Queensberry, in partnership with Acorn recruitment, has appointed Carly Bodenham as a new apprentice at Friars Walk, the £110million shopping and restaurant destination in Newport, Wales. Having recently completed her A-Levels, Carly will join Friars Walk’s management team and retailers as part of Retail Path – the retail property industry’s apprenticeship scheme operated by the British Council of Shopping Centres (BCSC) Educational Trust and National Skills Academy for Retail.

The 12-month apprenticeship programme will be delivered on site by Acorn Recruitment and will enable Carly to secure a Business Administration BTEC Level 2 Diploma. Retail Path is now in its second year and to date it has seen 10 apprentices graduate and secure permanent employment contracts. The programme was set up by the BCSC Educational Trust and National Skills Academy in 2014 to address the issue of youth unemployment and to encourage more young people to consider a career in the retail property industry.

Paul Sargent, Chief Executive and Co-Founder of Queensberry commented:

“At Queensberry, we take our responsibility to the communities we work with seriously. We are particularly committed to investing in future generations, which is why we signed up to BCSC’s Retail Path initiative at an early stage.
We have worked hard to ensure this social ethos informs our entire approach to the development and management of all our schemes and Friars Walk is no exception. The scheme has helped to transform Newport, created 1,200 jobs and unlocked further regeneration, it is therefore right that Queensberry’s first apprentice should start at the scheme.”

Peter Drummond, Chairman of the BCSC Educational Trust, commented:

“We wish Carly good luck as she takes her first steps towards a rewarding career in retail property. The training programme will provide Carly with the practical experience in the different specialisms required to efficiently operate a shopping centre, from centre and facilities management to sales. Our team has witnessed first-hand the impact this opportunity can have on young people’s self-esteem and their future employment prospects, and we are delighted Queensberry and Friars Walk are also committed to this vision.”

Simon Pullen, Operations Director at Queensberry, said:

“We are looking forward to welcoming Carly to Friars Walk, where she will be working closely with industry experts in order to build her experience in the retail property sector. Throughout her time with us she will have the chance to learn about key management roles and, in turn, open a whole new world of opportunities for her future career.”