Seafarers Apprenticeship: P&O Ferries continues to support Local Talent

P&O Ferries’ 2019 Apprenticeship Intake Front row (L to R): Stefan Palmer, Joel Venner, Ryan Sarahs, Blaze Robson-Davis and Alex Roberts Back row (L to R): Jack Marsh, Liam Care, Jordon Newport, James Goudie and Jack Smith

After receiving a record number of over 180 applications, ten new recruits have been selected to join P&O Ferries’ apprenticeship scheme – the two-year course commences this month.

The trainees, aged between 18 and 26, come from a variety of backgrounds in Kent, including a former railway worker, security guard, retail supervisor and two P&O Ferries’ stewards.

Seven members of the group are in training to become Deck Ratings and three members as Engine Ratings, with the course resulting in a SQA Level 2 Diploma in Maritime Studies, certified by the Merchant Navy Training Board and the Maritime & Coastguard Agency.

The full group are employed on a ‘Shoreside Learning Contract’, meaning that they will split their time between the classroom and at sea. They will spend three one-month periods at the National Maritime Training Centre at North Kent College learning essential skills, which they will then put into practice on board. While at sea, the trainees will gain additional insight from former apprentices who are now in full-time employment with P&O Ferries, as well as individuals from the operator’s officer cadet programme.

Commenting on the programme, trainee Blaze Robson-Davis, aged 19, said, “My family has a seafaring background and recommended it to me. It is a good life and you get to see a lot of the world at the same time which really appealed to me.”

Fellow apprentice, James Goudie, aged 25, added, “What attracted me to apply is the fact that P&O Ferries put your career progression first and the apprenticeship offers a better salary than I would have been able to get elsewhere. I can’t wait to be on board.”

Mike Willis, Learning and Development Advisor at P&O Ferries, said: “We received a huge amount of interest in our scheme this year and are pleased to welcome our new apprentices to the P&O Ferries family. Our scheme is geared to set individuals up for life, which is reflected through the quality of training we provide and the significant investment we place in each person’s progression.”

P&O Ferries launched its apprenticeship scheme in 2014 and has since welcomed four successful cohorts to its Dover to Calais route. Applications for the next apprenticeship scheme open next summer – to register for job alerts visit

Sea News, November 20

Baibhav Mishra
Author: Baibhav Mishra