MAKEOVER: Jane Teasdale of Stainton Village Hall, Andrew Coxon of Trades4Care, Michelle Andelin of Bishop Auckland College, student Lucy McCrindle, business advisor John Atkinson and Charlie Wright from Trades4Care during the renovation of Stainton Villag
MAKEOVER: Jane Teasdale of Stainton Village Hall, Andrew Coxon of Trades4Care, Michelle Andelin of Bishop Auckland College, student Lucy McCrindle, business advisor John Atkinson and Charlie Wright from Trades4Care during the renovation of Stainton Villag

A DALE village hall underwent a major makeover ahead of an important commemoration, thanks to a scheme that is giving students workplace experience.

Stainton Village Hall was completely redecorated last week, just in time for a service and afternoon tea to pay tribute to the village’s First World War fallen. The village counts the Queen’s uncle, Capt Fergus Bowes Lyon, among their heroes who made the ultimate sacrifice.

The makeover was completed through Trades4Care, a scheme that offers care facilities and community buildings an opportunity for a spruce up while also offering training to college students.

Trades4Care is the brainchild of Andrew Coxon who, through his knowledge of the care industry, realised that many care homes are short of cash and struggle to meet Care Quality Commission standards. He also realised that many colleges struggle to find work experience places for their students, and decided to solve both problems by bringing them together.

He said: “It is bridging a gap. This is a collaborative project working closely with local colleges and organisations to provide an enhanced journey of opportunity for our young people, including work placements, life skills, coaching and mentorship.”

The redecoration of Stainton Village Hall was one of two pilot projects undertaken by Trades4Care.

Blenkiron

Michelle Andelin, from Bishop Auckland College, praised the scheme because of the difficulty in finding work experience placements for students who might otherwise be involved with project work at the college.

She said: “It is absolutely fantastic."

Lucy McKindle, from Stainton Grove, was one of the five students helping out at the village hall. She said: “It has been amazing and a great opportunity.”

She chose to follow in her builder dad’s footsteps because she gets to use her love for art while doing redecorating work. Also satisfied was village hall member Jane Teasdale. She said: “I think it is brilliant for the students to have the opportunity to be in a proper work place. I am sure it is helping them.”

Mr Coxon added that the contractors benefited from having the students on board as well. He said: “Everybody benefits. The kids are learning things in the first two days they never learned in a year at college. The five students have saved about a day [of work for the contractors], which they feed back to the students through demonstrations, coaching and advice.”

For more information visit trades4care.co.uk.