VIDEO: See how young people from the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King’s Lynn fared in apprentice team of the year final

Members of the QEH team at Windermere.

Members of the QEH team at Windermere. - Credit: Archant

A team of apprentices from Queen Elizabeth Hospital, King's Lynn narrowly missed out on a top three position in the search for the official 'apprentice team of the year' following a gruelling six month challenge against some of the country's top leading employers.

They were competing against seven other teams and raised over £2,700 for Dementia Resources provided by the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Charitable Trust.

The two-day long adventure finale at Brathay Trust's Windermere headquarters marks the end of six months hard work, involving some of the country's leading apprentice employers, whose apprentices' team building, leadership, logistical and communications abilities have been put to the test. The final concluded in a thrilling whaler boat race across Lake Windermere pushing the teams' strength and teamwork to the limit.

As part of the challenge apprentices built a reminiscence room at the QEH, to help patients in the hospital with dementia lead a much more comfortable and happy life.

Supported by the National Apprenticeship Service, the Brathay Apprentice Challenge tests non-technical work skills and the personal attributes of competing apprentices.

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The final stage, held at Brathay Trust's headquarters in Cumbria saw the QEH narrowly miss out on a top three spot to winners PepsiCo, second place QinetiQ and joint third place e2v Technologies and British Airways. Teams from Oxley Developments, South Worcestershire College and Virgin Media also competed in the finals.

The two-day long event in Ambleside tested the teams' problem solving and physical abilities, culminating in a whaler boat race, across Lake Windermere which pushed the teams' strength and teamwork to the limit.

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The eight finalists were selected from over 110 teams and 1000 apprentices who entered the competition. Since January, the competitors have staged more than 360 school visits to talk about the benefits of Apprenticeships and delivered 60 community projects. In the finals, the teams also recruited over 50 new businesses to offer Apprenticeships.

QEH team member, Samantha Mansfield, said: 'Just getting to the final and beating off more than 100 other teams was an achievement and we're proud to have represented our company in the finals.

'The Challenge was really tough and the other teams really pushed us to our limits. We're so proud of how far we have come and the experiences we have gained not just at the finals but throughout the whole six months.'

Hospital chief Executive, Dr Manjit Obhrai said: 'Apprenticeships are a vital part of our organisation and to see our apprentices perform so well in the apprentice team of the year competition makes us proud We have had apprentices here since 2010 and we have had over 100 young people on the scheme since that date.

'Apprentices work across the Trust performing many different roles. There are over 80 different apprenticeships available for healthcare settings and these provide an alternate route into NHS careers at the hospital, providing training up to degree level.'

In a message to competitors, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said:

'Together they have shown the genuine difference an apprenticeship can make to give young people the chance to pursue a dream job as well as helping a business grow and increase its productivity.

'It is important that we work together to encourage even more businesses to offer Apprenticeships so we can ensure Britain's long term success, building a stronger economy and fairer society for this generation and the next.'

Godfrey Owen, Chief Executive of Brathay Trust, said the QEH had set a great example in offering enhanced apprenticeships.

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