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Preston College

Oddie’s Employees Gain Top Marks

News - Monday, 22nd June, 2015

Pendle MP Andrew Stephenson made a special visit to Oddie’s Bakery to present eleven employees with their hard earned qualifications.

The retail staff, who work across six of Oddie’s 16 stores in East Lancashire, have worked for over 12 months to gain their Level 2 Diplomas and Apprenticeships alongside Preston’s College.

Anne Banks, Sammaira Bashir, Janine Crewe, Jenny Hardacre and Fiona McLaughlin have all completed a Level 2 Retail Apprenticeship while Colleen Dower, Rachel Sawley, Linda Slinger, Jennifer Watson, Nicola Wilkie and Stephanie Young receive their Level 2 Diplomas in Retail Skills.

Established in 1905, Oddie’s Bakery now employ almost 200 members of staff between Colne, Blackburn and Todmorden who help maintain their reputation as a quality confectioner.

Talking about their achievements, Conservative MP, Andrew Stephenson said: “It is really important to celebrate what the Oddie’s Bakery staff have achieved and their commitment to lifelong learning.

“Recognition must also go to the bakery who have demonstrated a commitment to upskilling their workforce.

“In recent years, apprenticeships in Lancashire have doubled with learners of all ages capitalising on the opportunity to learn on the job while earning a wage. It also means that when learners finish their programme, they are work ready.”

To ensure that their staff maintain the high levels of service, Oddie’s Bakery have demonstrated a commitment to keeping their staff upskilled with the latest, industry required qualifications.

The initiative came into fruition in early 2014 when the bakery approached Preston’s College to help its front of house staff gain the qualifications to match their skills.

Bill Oddie, Managing Director of Oddie’s Bakery, added: “I’m extremely pleased for all of the Oddie’s Bakery staff who have received their qualifications from Preston’s College.

“With most employees having to now work well into their 60s, it’s important to maintain their skills with the latest industry standard qualifications.”

“I would like to thank Preston’s College for their training, tailored to meet the needs of our employees.

Preston’s College work with a number of employers across Lancashire to deliver bespoke training package to meet the needs their business needs.

Simon Abram, Retail Assessor for Preston’s College, commented: “A large number of the Oddie’s Bakery staff have not been in education for a large number of years. As such, the way they have applied themselves has been exemplary with a first class commitment and professionalism throughout their qualification.”

Oddie's Bakery apprentices holding up their certificates


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