Sparks' Remarks podcast cover art.

Sparks will fly with this new podcast!

We are thrilled to have collaborated with the Scottish Electrical Charitable Training Trust (SECTT) and SELECT to bring their vision to life for the Sparks’ Remarks podcast, which has officially launched today.

Walking around with invisible wheelbarrows and being sent to look for left-handed screwdrivers are just some of the highlights of the fun new podcast which will delve into the lives and experiences of young electrical apprentices as they navigate the beginning of their careers in the electrical industry.

The launch episode, entitled ‘The Good, The Bad And The Fallopian Tube Windups’, sees the electrical talent of tomorrow open up to Kim McAllister, our Senior Communications Consultant and Barrie McKay, Training and Development Manager at SECTT. 

We hear the thoughts of five first-year learners from West Lothian College – Fay Greens and Mason Arthurs who work for West Lothian Council, Nick Anderson of Glasgow Rewires Ltd, Robbie Super of Everwarm Ltd and Aaron Muir from Westrigg Electrical Services, as they share their funny stories about all of the pranks they and their colleagues have experienced during their time in the classroom and on-site.

There is also a more serious side to the podcast, where the apprentices talk frankly about the ups and downs of working in the electrical trade, revealing the things they find most challenging about the job – including early starts and cold mornings. The apprentices also discuss the support they receive from tutors and employers as they learn their trade, as well as the useful advice they’ve been given from older and more experienced apprentices and colleagues in the trade.

The podcast is aimed at current and would-be apprentices, and is hoped to offer more transparency on the journey of becoming and being an electrical apprentice, therefore encouraging more to enter into the industry.

Barrie McKay said: “Sparks’ Remarks is designed to be a light-hearted and honest reflection of what apprentices really think of their training journey. So in this first episode they make it clear that there’s a lot of hard work, but there’s a lot of fun and camaraderie to be had too. The electrical apprenticeship is not an easy course, but hopefully this podcast shows how learners are supported every step of the way. As we release each episode, it will also be great to see how the talent of tomorrow is shaping up and taking their future into their own hands.”

CEO of SECTT Anne Galbraith, – which manages high-quality training on behalf of the Scottish Joint Industry Board (SJIB), said: “It’s been a delight to listen to this podcast and hear the enthusiasm with which these apprentices are embarking on what, for many people, can be a very steep and daunting learning curve.

“It is good to hear about the support that they receive, not only from their employers, college staff and lecturers, but also from the electrical professionals on site who take time to help them learn their trade in the best possible way.”

Iain Mason, Director of Membership and Communications at SELECT, added: “By hearing real voices from Scotland’s electrical apprentices, hopefully we can encourage more talented young learners to join a rewarding industry which is already playing a key part in all of our lives.”

The new podcast comes during a record year for electrical apprenticeships in Scotland, with 934 apprentices and adult trainees recruited for the 2022/23 intake. It also comes just weeks after SECTT, SJIB and SELECT welcomed additional funding for electrical apprentices and adult trainees following a plea to government – but insisted that support must continue to prevent future shortfalls of talent.

The bodies say it is “worrying” that extra places may not be funded in 2023 and beyond – and insists the Scottish Government must support the sector by providing full funding for those seeking to be apprentice electricians and help the country on its journey to net zero.

Listen to the first episode of the new Sparks’ Remarks podcast here.