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Welder wins gold in Europe’s biggest skills competition

Norwich welder, Josh Peek, won a gold medal at the EuroSkills 2016 competition. Photo: WorldSkills UK

Norwich welder, Josh Peek, won a gold medal at the EuroSkills 2016 competition. Photo: WorldSkills UK

Archant

A Norwich welder has won a gold medal in Europe’s biggest vocational skills competition.

Josh Peek, 20, was awarded the medal at the EuroSkills 2016 which were held in Gothenburg, Sweden from December 1-3.

Mr Peek, who works at L&G Skilled Engineering, won the medal after a demanding three-day competition where he was given a number of different welding tasks, despite injuring himself on the second day of the competition.

He said: “I managed to set my gloves alight, that hurt – but I just got on with the job.”

“I am in shock. I thought that I had done well – but when I heard the words ‘gold goes to the United Kingdom’ I was totally stunned.

“This is for my family, my training provider Great Yarmouth College and my colleagues at work who have all been brilliant.”

Mr Peek, who has spent several years training in preparation for the competition, received his award in front of 10,000 people at a ceremony on December 4 after beating competitors from 15 other countries.

EuroSkills gives young people across Europe, up to the age of 25, the chance to showcase and develop their vocational skills by compete against one another in a range of categories.

Team UK gave its best ever performance at the event winning four gold medals, one silver medal, three bronze medals and eight Medallions of Excellence, following three days of competition.

Dr. Neil Bentley, CEO of WorldSkills UK, which oversees the Team UK selection said: “We are overjoyed – our best ever performance – just at the moment when we really need it.

“These young people are going back in to their workplaces and sharing that knowledge and experience – which helps businesses thrive and that’s what’s going to help businesses compete with others across the World.

“They are the future, the future of our economy, the future of our nation. They are going to help our economy grow.”

Mr Peek has now set his sights on getting selected for the WorldSkills International Finals next October in Abu Dhabi.

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