Gurpreet SinghIn spring 2020 Gurpreet Singh gained his level 2 BTEC diploma in Construction Operations and Civil Engineering Services – Highways Maintenance.

Gurpreet joined the A14 Cambridge to Huntingdon scheme in 2017 aged 28, on a ‘Trailblazer’ apprenticeship through Arc Academy. After gaining his diploma, he was promoted to multi-skilled operative.

Gurpreet’s ganger on the A14 project was Satinder Pal Singh, helped him to learn on the job. “My fellow workers were very helpful,” Gurpreet said. “My aim is to work my way up through the company.”

James Burke and Gurpreet Singh
Delivery manager James Burke (L) presents Gurpreet with his BTEC certificate

“Everyone on the A14 project works together to support each other,” says delivery manager James Burke. “It’s an attitude led by the IDT general foremen; there’s a real feeling of teamwork.”

James mentors VGC’s apprentices on the project (23 in all), and arranged help for workers who need support to attend lessons in English, literacy and numeracy. James is one of our trained FIR ambassadors, and is one of our eight STEM ambassadors, encouraging school students to consider careers in science, technology, engineering or maths.

James also led a trial of work placements for local unemployed people to help them back into work.

After finishing on the A14 project, Gurpreet joined the VGC team working near Birmingham for client BBV. They are building a slurry treatment plant which will treat spoil from the HS2 tunnel boring machines.

Gurpreet (R) with his ganger Satinder Pal Singh on the A14

Gurpreet had expressed an interest in working with concrete. His role currently consists of a mixture of groundworking duties and concrete finishing. He has had the opportunity to work on some huge concrete pours as part of his career development.

Gurpreet’s ganger Kulwinder Singh said: “Gurpreet is very skilled in his role. He is reliable, and takes pride in what he does. He is a key member of the team – and always has a smile on his face.”

Gurpreet said: “I am happy to be part of the VGC team on HS2. I am still learning new things from my supervisor, colleagues and BBV staff.”