Talented winners of the first West Yorkshire Apprenticeship Awards unveiled during glitzy ceremony

After months of anticipation, the winners of the first West Yorkshire Apprenticeship Awards have been unveiled.

From construction apprentices to inspiring mentors - the talented individuals that bring apprenticeships to life were celebrated in style during a glitzy ceremony.

The Awards took place in the McCall Suite, in the home of Bradford City FC, on Thursday June 9 - just days after Bradford was named as the UK city of culture 2025.

Co-hosted by former BBC Look North presenter Harry Gration and the latest winner of The Apprentice, West Yorkshire's own Harpreet Kaur, it was a spectacular night of celebration.

The winners of the first West Yorkshire Apprenticeship Awards (Photo: Gerard Binks)

The Awards, launched by the Yorkshire Evening Post in collaboration with the Wakefield Express and Halifax Courier, were set up to shout about the value of apprenticeship schemes in the county.

Tasked with judging the entries were Annette Hobson, regional membership manager for Make UK, the Yorkshire Post's business editor Mark Casci and Nick Garthwaite, the chairman of Bradford and Airedale Manufacturing Alliance.

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Judges unveil the talented finalists of the first West Yorkshire Apprenticeship ...

They spent hours pouring over the applications, before whittling down the entries into a shortlist and deciding who would come away with the trophies.

Harpreet Kaur, the latest winner of The Apprentice, presented the awards with Harry Gration (Photo: Gerard Binks)

Guests enjoyed a drinks reception and a three-course meal before the ceremony began.

The winners across 12 categories were presented with a glittering trophy, as well as a box of baked goodies from Harpreet's brand Oh So Yum.

"It was amazing being in a room full of so much talent," Harpreet said.

"It was inspiring to learn more about why the finalists had been nominated and I was so glad that regardless of who won, there was so much recognition for everybody.

Guests enjoyed a drinks reception and a three-course meal before the ceremony began (Photo: Gerard Binks)

"I really enjoyed presenting the awards with Harry - we have different styles and we bounced off of each other and had plenty of fun."

Leeds Trinity University student Leanne Wilson came away with the Higher or Degree Apprentice of the Year award, in recognition for her work leading a specialist team at Leeds Community Healthcare NHS Trust.

"I'm thrilled," Leanne said, after collecting her trophy.

"All the other nominees were so incredible and I didn't think I had a chance.

"Working in the NHS during the pandemic has been tough. But I've got an amazing team, an amazing manager and my family have really supported me.

"I didn't get the opportunity to go to university when I was younger, I went straight into employment, so having the option to study and work at the same time is fantastic. I'd tell anyone to do it."

Josh Tipple, an apprentice at construction company Travis Perkins PLC, was named the Construction Apprentice of the Year.

His enthusiasm for his role, which will end with a Trade Supplier qualification, has got him noticed by the company's managing director.

"It's incredible, I didn't expect it," Josh said of his win.

"Doing an apprenticeship has moved my career so much. I started out as a warehouse assistant and now I'm in sales with the opportunity to progress."

The West Yorkshire Apprenticeship Awards were sponsored by Yorkshire Housing, Zenith, Appris, Royal Navy, Bradford College, Openreach, Haribo, Leeds Trinity University, Yorkshire and Humber Apprentice Ambassador Network, Northcoders, Occupational Awards Limited, Bradford Council and West Yorkshire Consortium of Colleges.

Here is every winner of the West Yorkshire Apprenticeship Awards

Construction Apprentice of The Year: Josh Tipple of Travis Perkins PLC

Diversity and Inclusion Programme: FDM Group

Engineering and Manufacturing Apprentice of the Year: Aman Athwal of Bowers Metrology Group. An honourable mention went to Joseph Flynn of Syngenta.

Health and Public Service Apprentice of the Year: Elie Caton of Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

Higher or Degree Apprentice of the Year: Leanne Wilson of Leeds Community Healthcare NHS Trust

Intermediate Apprentice of the Year: Muhammad Uddin of Yorkshire Housing

Large Business Apprentice Employer of the Year: Solenis

Mentor of the Year: Rachael Smith of Zenith

SME Apprentice Employer of the Year: Produmax

Technology & Digital Apprentice of the Year: Matthew Fletcher of Leeds & Yorkshire Housing Association

Training Provider of the Year: Bradford College

Professional Services Apprentice of the Year: Yousef Hussain of Azets