Silver for Cornish student at Worldskills final

A Penzance painting and decorating student has won silver in the UK Worldskills Competition held at the NEC, Birmingham. Thomas Nowell from Penwith College has achieved overall silver medal in the competition being pipped to the post by a student from City College of Building, Glasgow, a specialist construction college, by only two points.

Thomas, who has a number of accolades under his belt including gold in the regional final of UK Worldskills, held at South Devon College, and silver in the Johnstones Young Painter of the year, was delighted with the results.

Andie Bishop, his lecturer who accompanied Thomas to the NEC, said: “I think it is a remarkable achievement considering the advanced geometry required. Thomas’ brushwork and accuracy was amazing, particularly since he was working in the NEC, which is noisy with lots of people watching.”

Thomas has now finished his Level 3 course and is in full-time employment locally. Thomas was employed by the firm with whom he did his work experience as they were so impressed with his work ethic and skills. They are also delighted with his achievements.

Programme Team Leader, Steve Piff, said: “The UK Worldskills competition for Painting & Decorating was sponsored by Crown paints. They devised a very difficult challenge for the students, transposing a design from A4 paper size to fit a whole wall. This is a very technical exercise incorporating not just painting skills but a lot of maths and geometry. I am delighted that after only five years offering the trades at Penwith College we have students who are right up there in ability with other specialist colleges in the country who each have hundreds of students to choose their entrants from.”