This National Apprenticeship Week we catch up with CBL apprentice Ali Burrows 

19 year-old Ali from Burton in Kendal is studying a Blacksmithing apprenticeship at the National School of Blacksmithing in Hereford.  Ali spends 6 weeks of the year at Hereford and the rest of the time with us here in Ulverston. 

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Ali Burrows 

What does it mean to you have an apprenticeship with CBL?

Ali - I've always looked up to Chris' work and the opportunity to learn in his workshop with his helpful team has been brilliant.  Every day is different, i'm given a healthy amount of responsibility but always offered help, advice and guidance when needed.

What sort of things have you been doing at college?

Ali - I've been learning traditional forgework skills, through a range of projects, including firewelding, decorative scrollwork, industrial smithing, copperwork and toolmaking.  We also learn how to draw and design. 

What sort of things have you got involved with at CBL?

Ali - Working in the forge on a variety of jobs, large and small, with some of the best craftsmen in the industry.

What advice would you offer to others thinking about taking the apprenticeship route to their chosen career?

Ali - If the apprenticeship is within a job you know you'll enjoy, do it!  You'll always get back what you put in and the opportunity to work on real projects for real clients is a powerful educator.  Also, apprentices can completely avoid student debt.

What has been your favourite CBL project that you have been involved with so far?

Ali - Forged gates and railings for a private estate in Cumbria. 

And finally, what are your aspirations for the future?

Ali - I'd like to become as good as I can at what I do!