OPINION: Follow lead set by this city firm

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IT pays to invest in youth, as proved by a success story at city engineering firm DavyMarkham.

It has revived its in-house apprenticeship scheme after not having taken on a trainee for 20 long years.

The firm now boasts that one in four of its shop-floor workforce is an apprentice, aged under 21.

And it has rightly won a prestigious award for its dedication to training, skills and apprentices.

DavyMarkham picked up a Westfield Health-sponsored National Skills’ Award given by the Engineering Employers’ Federation, which recognises the firm’s efforts to make apprentice training a key business priority.

The firm knows the future of manufacturing is dependent upon a constant supply of well trained, motivated and highly skilled people.

Let’s hope others follow its lead.

State of gallery is no excuse to close

THE scandal of Sheffield’s Graves Art Gallery is getting worse by the day.

The trust which runs galleries and museums in Sheffield want to close the much-treasured institution as it struggles to balance its books and save around £328,000.

That sounds a lot of money but it shrinks to near-insignificance to the figure tripping off the tongue of a Sheffield council ruling group councillor. He reckons that the building needs a whopping £26.5 million spending on it to make it ‘fit for purpose’.

This is scandalous because the building has not become dilapidated to this state overnight.

It is the victim of persistent and consistent neglect by successive administrations at the city council.

Our ruling politicians have simply not cared enough about this wonderful city treasure.

They have stood back and allowed it to crumble into its present unaccepted state.

The answer is simple. The gallery should neither be closed, as the trust suggests, nor mothballed, as the council may like to see. Keep it open and stop trying to scare the public by tripping out figures which are no excuse for years of neglect.

Preserving rhymes

BOYS and girls came out to play. And with the help of South Yorkshire’s very own bard, Ian McMillan, celebrated the success of a project which involved the updating, analysing and redesigning of the British Library National Sound Archive’s recordings of children’s games and songs.

These were gathered back in the 1960s and 70s though they date back generations.

And that is why it is wonderful to witness their preservation for the future - and that this process is being helped by the next generation!