Shufflebottom and Future Generations

In 2022, after more than 27 years manufacturing steel-framed buildings, Shufflebottom is proud to have grown to be a multi-million-pound turnover business with a core of 87 staff, plus contractors, and a growing list of clients across the UK in the commercial, industrial and agricultural sectors. But, at its heart, it still retains the family and community values on which it was founded all those years ago.

We endeavour to take our social, corporate and environmental responsibilities very seriously, and as part of this ethos, we have forged strong links with education providers in the local area, including Swansea University, Coleg Sir Gar, local primary schools and Young Farmers. We are committed to playing our part in Future Generations. That’s why on Thursday, 10th February we were thrilled to open our doors here at our offices and factory at Cross Hands to Llandovery College.

Llandovery College is an acclaimed, independent day and boarding school in Carmarthenshire whose mission is to “provide education tailored to excite and inspire young minds in a stimulating and fulfilling learning environment which aims to be rich and varied.” As evidence of this, they have recently added the innovative BTEC in Engineering to their curriculum, and four learners from Year 12 and their Design & Technology teacher, Sean Rodgers, stepped out of the classroom to experience what Mr Rodgers called, “a whole different scenario,” designed to show theory in practice.

We had an action-packed morning, introducing the learners to our industry. We started off with a PowerPoint presentation of the history of Shufflebottom; a listing of all the awards it has won for Training, Design, and Health & Safety, delivered by Director, Alex Shufflebottom. This was followed by the students enjoying a tour of the factory, dressed in high-vis jackets and their ears well-protected. To finish, Shufflebottom’s H&S Manager, Peter Dixon, took the students through the minefield of Health & Safety Law (to correlate with the BTEC module currently being studied) and its implementation in the factory and offices at Cross Hands and on the sites where Shufflebottom delivers and erects its steel products. We were proud to be able to tell the learners that Shufflebottom has been instrumental in, and been recognised for, developing systems of best practice that help drive our particular industry forward. We couldn’t resist the story of the unannounced H&S Inspection we once had, when we were told by the inspectors that they “wished everywhere was like Shufflebottom.”

At Shufflebottom we applaud Llandovery College for introducing the BTEC in Engineering to the syllabus. It is a great option for young people looking for a practical and creative qualification and provides students with the skills and knowledge that employers such as Shufflebottom value as well as the confidence to progress into fulfilling and exciting careers. Who knows? Perhaps one day, one of Llandovery College’s learners will be back here as part of the Shufflebottom Team.

It happens this way in the real world. You have to see it in real life.

Sean Rodgers
Design & Technology Teacher
Llandovery College

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