Blog Article

Kieran Jones-Rees wins Bronze at Skillbuild National Finals

Kieran Jones-Rees wins Bronze at Skillbuild National Finals


We would like to extend a huge congratulations to Kieran Jones-Rees, NVQ Level 2 Plastering Shared Apprentice, for his success at the SkillBuild 2021 National Finals in November 2021.

Over the course of a truly intensive three-day competition at the National Construction College (East) in Bircham Newton, Norfolk, Kieran achieved the Bronze Award in the plastering discipline.  

SkillBuild, delivered by CITB, is the largest and longest running multi-trade skills competition for construction trainees and apprentices in the UK. The competition starts with regional qualifiers, with a select few in each discipline progressing on to the National Finals.

The Regional Qualifiers run UK-wide, from April to June each year. These one-day events bring together the country’s finest apprentices and trainees, with the overall eight highest-scoring competitors in each specialist skill going through to the next round – the SkillBuild UK National Final.

The National finals see the standard of competition intensify, as skill levels and pressure increase over a three-day event. Competitors are tested not only on their technical abilities, but also on their time management, character and commitment.

Gold, silver and bronze medals are duly awarded at a closing ceremony, with the potential for the highest-scoring eligible recipients to join the WorldSkills UK Squad and progress on to international competition.

Due to Covid restrictions during 2021, online assessments and remotely delivered physical tasks were introduced for qualifying for the first time. Almost 250 competitors participated in the qualifiers across 10 disciplines, illustrating the very high standards of construction apprentices and trainees we have up and down the UK.

The 10 competitive disciplines are: bricklaying, carpentry, furniture and cabinet making, joinery, plastering, plastering and drywall systems, painting and decorating, stonemasonry, wall and floor tiling, and foundation skills in woodworking.

Those lucky enough to be selected for ‘Squad UK’ get a chance to represent their country at the EuroSkills and WorldSkills competitions. The EuroSkills competition runs every two years, with participants drawn from 28 European countries. The WorldSkills competition is often referred to as the ‘Skills Olympics’. The next WorldSkills event is due to take place in Shanghai, China, in September 2022, with more than 1,300 competitors expected to take part from over 60 countries competing across 56 skills.

Kieran Jones-Rees, Bronze Award winner at the SkillBuild 2021 National Finals, said:

“It was a great thrill to take part in this year’s SkillBuild National Finals. The standard of competition was extremely high, and I’m very proud to have come away with the Bronze Award for plastering. I would highly recommend trying out for the competition to other apprentices as a great way to challenge yourself. I’ve learned a lot from the experience, and it has definitely boosted my confidence.”

Anthony Rees, Regional Manager, Cyfle Building Skills, added:

“Kieran is rightly proud of his achievement. SkillBuild attracts the best apprentices and trainees from across the UK every year, and the level of craftsmanship, confidence and competence on display at this year’s national finals was phenomenal. As well as their technical skill, competitors are judged on a number of other criteria, including their time-management and character. Taking part in the competition can help apprentices build their self-esteem and other life skills that they will carry with them into their chosen career.”