AN electric vehicle parts maker, which revealed it was suffering from a lack of skilled North-East engineering talent, has taken on three apprentices.

Sevcon, in Gateshead, has welcomed 18-year-old Adam Lewis to a trainee IT support technician course, with Kristopher Fisher, 17, and 16-year-old Shaun Angus studying four-year electrical engineering apprenticeships.

The students are all former pupils at Whickham School, in South Tyneside, and were introduced to the firm by TDR Training.

Loading article content

Sevcon previously launched a £200,000 bursary scheme to fund students through university after telling The Northern Echo it was bringing in specialists from China, Iran and Colombia.

Employing more than 100 workers, it makes motor controllers for Renault's two-seater Twizy quadricycle and parts for Brammo motorcycles.

Matt Boyle, Sevcon’s president and chief executive, said: “Ensuring we have a pipeline of skilled engineers is vital to the future of our business.

“The skills situation in the North-East is critical and we need to ensure we have the right people with the right abilities to match our future growth projections.

“I’m delighted to welcome these apprentices, and I’m sure they will all prove their worth to the business.”

Earlier this year, Sevcon launched a venture targeting the multi-billion pound agriculture market, unveiling low carbon systems for the tractor and machinery market.

The move created an initial ten jobs and was supported by a £300,000 grant from the Government's Regional Growth Fund.