Real-life learning donation

Washington and Riley is collaborating with Stoke on Trent College to provide free learning resources for its construction students.

The Burslem-based firm has donated door hardware, including hinges, handles and locks, to promote a real-life learning environment.

In addition to stocking door hardware, Washington and Riley supplies, installs and maintains fire doors and was the first UK company to gain certification as a BlueSky installer, the company said.

The hardware donated will allow students to learn and craft their skills in hanging commercial fire doors.

Jason Thompson, sales director at Washington and Riley, said: “We’ve witnessed growth in the construction and building services industry, but there is a skills gap. It’s our hope that donating industry-standard hardware will help to train the next generation of highly skilled carpenters and joiners.”

The management team has committed to offering work placements to the college’s carpentry and joinery students. This year, four students completed 30-hour placements, working alongside the firm’s fitting teams.

Rob Wilton, team leader for construction and building and engineering services at Stoke on Trent College, said: “The donation has provided our students with first-hand experience of using quality, industry-standard ironmongery. It’s an opportunity only made economically viable because of our partnership with Washington and Riley.

“The collaboration also helps us to promote to our students the value and benefit of supporting local independent business.”

Jason and his partners plan to continue their partnership with the college, supporting its construction courses with any further hardware needs, and continuing to provide its students with valuable work placements.