Skip to main content

Apprentice in national engineering finals

Apprentice in national engineering finals PR Story

Bedford College and Lockheed Martin advanced apprentice Ben Copperwheat has won a regional round of the National Apprenticeship Awards 2019.

He will now go forward to the national final, to be held on 27 November 2019 in London.

Ben, aged 21, from Ampthill, Bedfordshire joined the Lockheed Martin UK team three years ago and is now Deputy Scout SV Engineering Lead. He was nominated for the award by Head of Technical Facilities Mark Lawson, who is a Governor for The Bedford College Group and an inspiration for young people wanting to go into engineering.

Apprentice in national engineering finals PR Story

Ben commented: “Apprenticeships are an equal choice to going to university. I want to demonstrate through my own success just what can be achieved by doing an apprenticeship with the right organisation, such as Lockheed Martin.”

Neil Hebron Director of Engineering and Technology at Lockheed Martin UK Ampthill said:
“We are so proud that Ben has been announced as the East Midlands Region Advanced Apprentice of the Year. He is a fantastic role model for apprenticeships and Lockheed Martin UK.”

Now in their 16th year, the National Apprenticeship Awards showcase the diverse and growing range of sectors engaged with apprenticeships, whilst celebrating the achievements of outstanding apprentices, apprentice employers and individuals to inspire others to follow in their footsteps and champion apprenticeships across England.

Following the regional ceremonies that took place across England, employers from sectors including banking, the public sector, TV and engineering will compete to win four national employer titles. An Apprenticeship Champion will also be crowned on the night, alongside the winner of the coveted Rising Star award – which is decided in part by a public vote.

Ian Pryce CBE, CEO of The Bedford College Group said:

We are so pleased for Ben. A superstar apprentice with a superstar employer with whom we are proud to work.

Andy Osborn a Course Manager in Engineering at Bedford College, who has watched Ben’s progress from the college-run University Technical College (UTC) at Dunstable, said: “Ben is a fantastic example of how the routes into the very best careers in engineering do not need to involve university. Ben came to us from Hartlington Upper School, thrived in the UTC environment, gaining exceptional grades and winning a Duke of York Gold award along the way. From there he was accepted into the Lockheed Martin apprenticeship position, and has since completed his HND at Bedford College, and is now with us to top up to his BSc in Engineering degree.

Via Bedford College and our links with major employers, talented teenagers can rise through the ranks rapidly – without the burden of a three year university debt.”

For more information about the apprenticeship programmes available at the College visit

What else is going on?

The latest from The Bedford College Group

View more