Crown Paints joined forces with Bell Group UK to support a community event organised by Midland Heart Housing Association, which put painting and decorating under the spotlight.

Being a family-run organisation, investing in social regeneration is an essential part of Bell Group UK’s core values. Inherently Bell Group has one of the most successful apprenticeship programmes in the construction industry and they invest heavily in the long term development, training and support of their employees.

Midland Heart customers were invited to participate in a series of painting and decorating workshops held in Birmingham, which were sponsored by Bell Group UK and Crown Paints. Participants had the unique opportunity to put their skills to the test in practical sessions and to discuss career opportunities in the industry with Bell Group and Crown staff.

Crown Paints have a long standing partnership with Bell Group and through the amalgamation of resources and pledging dedicated staff time, both Companies are proud to be involved in many similar events across the UK and improve the lives of people within local communities. Bell Group’s Branch Manager stated “We have given the volunteers a chance to build up skills which may serve them in later life and we are delighted to have offered the tools and knowledge to build on underlying talent. It was a fun event and those involved had a unique opportunity to begin making steps towards a new career.”

Participants were also given the opportunity to sign-up to Crown Decorating Centres’ work experience programme, which works with Bell Group to offer placements across the country.

The event marks Crown Paints’ ongoing work in the areas of training and community, reflected in initiatives including the Crown Trade Apprentice Decorator of the Year competition.

For 36 years Crown Trade has operated the contest, which encourages hundreds of apprentices and trainees at the start of their careers to strive for excellence in their craft and reach the very highest professional standards.

It offers the opportunity for competitors to show their tutors and employers, along with a panel of expert judges, just how well they’ve mastered the skills and techniques required in the industry.

With a critical shortage of skills across the painting and decorating industry, the competition shines the spotlight on the next generation at a vital moment.

Figures released by the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) reveals a startling 13,250 painters and decorators will be needed between now and 2018 to meet growing demand.