SHINING A LIGHT ON SKILLS
Wednesday 23 March 2011
Birmingham’s Lord Mayor, Cllr Len Gregory, and the Lady Mayoress, visited Toye Kenning & Spencer in the city’s Jewellery Quarter to find out more about the skills of the company’s craftspeople and the training and development opportunities it provides.
The couple toured the factory seeing stampers, silver smiths, gold smiths, enamellers and finishers.
They were told that attracting young people in particular to the trade crafts is vital but not easy. Chief executive of Toye Kenning & Spencer, Fiona Toye, explained: “Every product we manufacture goes through the hands of our experienced craftspeople; more than ten are needed to produce a Jewel for a Lord Mayor. So it’s easy to see that encouraging the craft skills is essential to our long term success and that of other manufacturers in the Quarter.
“We took the opportunity of the visit to explain the work we are doing with the School of Jewellery and The Goldsmiths’ Company to create high quality training and development programmes. We are putting in place a new apprenticeship scheme that we hope will lead to an industry specific qualification.”
Founded in 1685, Toye Kenning & Spencer is still family run.