Macaulay’s looking for gold in the Gulf State skills show

By Grimsby Telegraph | Posted: 6 Oct 2017

GRIMSBY sheet metal fabricator Macaulay Reavill is gearing up to go for gold, representing Team UK in the prestigious WorldSkills Final in Abu Dhabi next week.

The 20-year-old, who works for Allied Protek, will join the talented British hopefuls across a range of disciplines for a send-off in Westminster on Tuesday, before travelling to the Gulf for the intense competition described as the Olympic Games of construction.

It follows a series of gruelling regional and national heats – in which all three competitors were from the South Bank – and the bar-raising European finals.

“The last two years have been a massive challenge. I’ve been up against some highly skilled engineers from a range of different industries,” he said. “In my mind, everyone deserved to win. But at the end of the day only one person can go to Abu Dhabi and I’m thrilled that this person will be me.”

Ahead of the “biggest challenge of his life,” Macaulay, who is from Holton-le-Clay and joined Allied Protek as an apprentice in 2013, described representing Team UK as the “best feeling in the world”. 

The former Tollbar Academy pupil, who recently completed the apprenticeship with his employer and Grimsby Institute, will go head-to-head with 14 of the best young metalworkers from across the globe, including engineering powerhouses China and South Korea. 

“It has given me the real confidence to believe in myself and be proud,” he said. “It is mind-blowing that I can now be considered best young metalworker in the country. But of course I wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for the support of everyone at Allied Protek. They’ve allowed me the time to do this and have helped me every step of the way.

“It is going to be tough; I’ll be competing with people who have trained for five years and in places like South Korea where they are selected from school for this.”

In the UAE capital, Macaulay will be tasked with making a structure out of materials using detailed fabrication instructions. It could be a miniature train, log burner or tipper truck, with the margin for error as slim as half a millimetre.

Back at the Armstrong Street base, Allied Protek operations manager Iain Cowan said: “We have every confidence that Macaulay can do it. We’re already cheering him on as he embarks on the final training. It’s going to be tough, but he knows we’re all behind him 100 per cent. We are all incredibly proud of him. He has fought off tough competition to ‘go for gold’ and we hope that his example will prove an inspiration to other young people who may be considering a career in engineering. 

“We’re delighted to have recruited such a dedicated and talented young man, and we wish Macaulay every success.”

The opening ceremony, at which he will join other Team UK members to parade the Union Jack, will be streamed live on the internet on October 14, with the close also broadcast live on October 19.

WorldSkills, featuring 1,000 competitors from 70 countries, helps to inspire the next generation and fill the engineering skills gap. 

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