Transport minister Mike Penning has opened Eddie Stobart’s new Training Academy in Widnes.

Together with Stobart Group chief operating officer, William Stobart, he also announced a new logistics apprenticeship programme, which will see 150 apprentices join the Eddie Stobart team annually.

The academy has been operational since March and provides specialist instruction for Stobart employees across all functions of the business. Its primary role is the instruction and standards training of drivers, both veterans and new starters, and importantly, youngsters joining the apprenticeship program.

18-year olds coming into the academy will receive an intensive six-month Logistics Apprenticeship, during which they will spend a minimum six-weeks alongside experienced drivers gaining on-the-road experience. Only then, upon successful completion of the programme, will they be brought into the business and introduced to life as an Eddie Stobart driver.