Six vehicle technician apprentices from Royal Mail Fleet were shown around Cartwright’s factory in Altrincham, Cheshire, to find out how the trailers they repair are designed and made.
They learned about every stage of the process, and saw Cartwright’s newly installed £1.8m panel press, the paint shop, and the freight and fabrications departments.
In addition, five Cartwright apprentices visited the Royal Mail Fleet’s workshop at Crick, Northamptonshire, to learn more about the role the trailers play in operation.
Royal Mail Fleet apprentice vehicle technician Daniel Carberry said: “Today really opened my eyes on the scale of Cartwright and how much work is actually involved in making our trailers. We’ve been really impressed by everything we’ve seen and have enjoyed seeing the bigger picture.”
Both groups have been asked to feed back ideas on any improvements they believe can be made.
“This was our first apprentice exchange and we look forward to hearing their views,” said Mark Cartwright, the trailer maker’s group managing director.
“Apprentices play an important part in Cartwright’s day-to-day operations and it is vital that we support the next generation coming through to make the most of their talents and skills.”
Paul Gatti, director of Royal Mail Fleet, added: “This was an excellent initiative from two companies that are committed to identifying and nurturing future talent. I’m confident the apprentices will have learned lots from the two days and be able to apply it in their respective areas.”
Cartwright has a long relationship with Royal Mail and the two companies have worked together to ensure designs meet Royal Mail’s operational requirements.
One recent example is a ‘lifting roof’ double-decker trailer that Cartwright designed to accommodate a Royal Mail route with a low bridge. A conventional trailer low enough to pass under the bridge would take 75 cages; Cartwright created one with a 95-cage capacity by adding a moveable roof and associated aerodynamic benefits.