NTA Overall Winner Josh Lavin

The North West Aerospace Alliance (NWAA) held the 18th NWAA New Talent Awards on the 1st March 2018 recognising and rewarding the achievements of young apprentices and trainees from the North West of England’s aerospace and defence industry.

The ceremony, held at the prestigious Imperial War Museum North, Manchester, saw apprentices, employers, training provider’s and mentors from across the North West Aerospace industry battling the elements to enjoy a three course dinner and speeches from the 2015 winner of the Best North West Aerospace & Defence Apprentice award Aiva MeIngaile, Safran Nacelles and Dr Priyanka Dhopade, Senior Research Associate at the Oxford Thermofluids Institute and recently chosen by the Women’s Engineering Society as one of 2017’s Top 50 Women in Engineering under 35.

This year, following fierce competition and entries from organisations across the North West and Isle of Man, saw the overall winner of the award of North West’s Best Aerospace & Defence Apprentice, along with the £1000 prize kindly sponsored by recruitment consultants Ideal Recruit Ltd going to Josh Lavin from Paradigm Precision. In a change to the awards, and to acknowledge that apprenticeships are evolving by enabling apprentices to not only achieve a level 3 standard, but now support training up to Masters and PHD level two new awards were introduced – Aerospace Engineering Technician and Aerospace Engineer. The winners of these two inaugural awards, sponsored by the IET (Institute of Engineering and Technology which included a cheque for £250 each, were Sam Williams, Magellan Aerospace and Amy Wolstencroft, Safran Nacelles respectively.

Salima Bana from BAE Systems carried off the “One to Watch” trophy, sponsored by Preston’s College, while Themis, Burnley College scooped the Employer & Training Provider prize sponsored by Hyde Aero Products.

The Innovation Award, sponsored by Burnley College, went to Dalton Green from the Hyde Group. This award is about recognising an individual who through their innovative thinking and outstanding engineering skills has brought successful change to the business.

NWAA’s Business University Challenge aims to bring business apprentices, university and college students together to compete head-to-head in a series of challenges to test  their negotiation, innovation, communication and presenting skills.

11 teams of young people from North West universities, colleges and aerospace businesses competed for the title at Burnley College in January. During the ceremony Safran Nacelles were revealed as the winning team and presented with £1,500 prize money by Royal Aeronautical Society and a trophy sponsored by Wincanton.

Candidates who displayed outstanding leadership and performance during the Business University Challenge were identified by the judges and two Outstanding Professional Excellence awards and prize money of £200, sponsored by Safran Nacelles, were presented to Meghan Adamson, MBDA Missile Systems and Mohammed Rashid, from University of Central Lancashire (UCLAN). Due to the exceptional high caliber of  individuals, the judges really couldn’t decide between three candidates so NWAA sponsored a third Outstanding Professional award which was presented to Milli Sagar, Safran Nacelles.

David Bailey, Chief Executive Officer at NWAA, said: “The New Talent Awards has become a key event for the North West’s Aerospace and Defence Sector. It is important that we continue to recognise and reward the achievements of the talent emerging in our industry. It is hugely important to our industry that we increase the numbers of talented young people into apprenticeships to plug the skills gap that threatens our ability to achieve the growth the aerospace market is experiencing.

Sponsors of the New Talent Awards are:

  • Ideal Recuit Ltd – North Wests Best Apprentice Winners Prize Money
  • IET The Institute of Engineering & Technology – Aerospace Engineering Technician & Aerospace Engineer
  • MBDA MissileSystems – Drinks Reception
  • Prestons College – The One to Watch Award
  • Burnley College – Innovation Award
  • Hyde Aero Products – Employer and Training Provider Award
  • Isle of Man Aerospace Cluster – Event Partner
  • BAE Systems, Manchester University, Paradigm Precision,Training 2000, Nelson & Colne College


Sponsors of the Business University Challenge (BUC) are:

  • Prize Money – Wincanton
  • Winners Trophy – Royal Aeronautical Society
  • Professional Excellence Individual Awards – Safran Nacelles / NWAA

inning BUC team members:

Company Name – Safran Nacelles (1st Place):

  • Milli Sagar
  • Chris Cocklin
  • Mike Jackson

Company Name – MBDA Missile Systems (2ndPlace):

  • Peter Mather
  • Clayton Beattie
  • Meghan Adamson

Company Name – BAE System (3rdPlace):

  • Stephen Mercer
  • Laura Caunce
  • Beth Scott
Winners of Best Aerospace & Defence Apprentice Awards:

  • North West’s Best Aerospace & Defence Apprentice Winner Josh Lavin,
    Paradigm Precision
  • Aerospace Engineer – Amy Wolstencroft, Safran Nacelles
  • Aerospace Engineering Technician – Sam Williams, Magellan Aerospace
  • One To Watch – Salima Bana, BAE Systems
  • Innovation Award – Dalton Green, Hyde Group


Highly Commended (company alphabetical):

  • Ben Sharples - Addision Precision
  • Daniel Rothwell - BAE Systems
  • Gregory Nash - BAE Systems
  • Joshua Heap - Hycrome Aerospace Ltd
  • Samuel Gough - Hyde Group
  • Charlie Salisbury - Paradigm Precision
  • Joe Winwood - Paradigm Precision
  • Kyle Lord - Safran Group
  • Curtis Booth - Senior Aerospace Weston
  • Adam Burton - Senior Aerospace Weston
  • James Whitehead - T&R Precision


Images from the New Talent Awards event held on the 1stof March will be available to download from Flickr from Wednesday8thMarch

Amy Wolstencroft Winner Aerospace Engineer DSC 0008 Neil Burrows From Nelson And Colne College





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