Choose Cumbria
Chris O Brien Jack Stansfield Arch

Talented brickwork students craft complex arch

Published on: Monday 19th June 2017
Categorised under: Learn , Barrow, Construction, Education, Furness College, Stay

Two talented Furness College construction students have created an intricate arch of crafted brickwork after being challenged by their tutors.

Chris O’Brien and Jack Stansfield built the complex Elliptical Bulls Eye structure after they finished their Level 3 in bricklaying.

The pair planned the arch, which features a basket weave panel, and spent four days putting it together in the construction workshops at the Channelside campus.

Construction lecturer Pete Gabriel said the tutors had challenged the students to take on the complicated task after they had finished their course.

He said: “This is the first time students have taken on a task such as this. It is a fantastic piece of craftsmanship and the effort and enthusiasm they had for the project was brilliant.

“Every day they would come in and get on with the work, and it has taken a lot to produce this.”

Chris, 25, who was unemployed when he joined the college, is now a valued member of the team at J Nuttall Building Services in Millom and will return to college in September to start a foundation degree in construction management. He won the regional round of the Heart of Skillbuild competition last year.

He said: “Each brick in the bullseye is individually cut to fit. It was a great project to do and to see the end product.”

Jack, 19, who works at Mulberry Homes, started at Channelside on a full-time course before securing an apprenticeship with the support of his tutors. He said it had been great to put their skills to the test on something different.

There are plans to build more than 3,000 homes across Furness and Ulverston in the next few years.

Construction lecturer Darran Curtis said it was great to see how the students had progressed through the course and that several were now going on to higher education.

“Bricklayers and plasterers are in high demand in the area and the work the students are producing here shows they have top quality skills that will set them up for an excellent career in the construction industry.”

Subscribe to our newsletter: get a glimpse of what it's really like to live and work in Cumbria.