Blenheim Palace is on course to reach it's goal of training more than 100 new apprentices by the end of 2027.

Since 2017, Blenheim Palace, spanning the Palace, Estate, and Property businesses, has trained 49 apprentices with 38 currently on board.

They are spread across various departments including built heritage, forestry, events and hospitality, game, finance, security, and construction.

Oxford Mail: Aimee Akinola, a built heritage apprenticeAimee Akinola, a built heritage apprentice (Image: Blenheim Palace)

Blenheim Estate Homes and Pye Homes recently welcomed five new apprentices learning trades from bricklaying to carpentry and plumbing.

These individuals are part of the 24-month Blenheim Estate apprenticeship programme, a pathway to full-time employment with the Oxfordshire house builder.

Dominic Hare, CEO of Blenheim Palace, said: "The Blenheim and Pye apprenticeship programme is something I am immensely proud of.

"We are helping young, local people learn and develop skills and set them up for a blossoming career.

“Our apprentices are some of our best people, and they are also injecting a new lease of life into the veteran staff who are being given the opportunity to teach their trades to a new generation.

"The passing down of skills, principles and practices is a vital part of building not only a legacy which anyone can be proud of, but also a community which improves the quality of life for future residents."

Emma Norridge, people manager at Blenheim Palace, explained that the apprenticeships provided at the Palace range from Level 2 to Level 7, equivalent to a master's degree.

She said: "Not only are we using our apprentice levy to develop young people but are also using it to allow people to learn new skills in their current roles and for those to have a complete career change."

One apprentice is 26-year-old Aimee Akinola, who is transitioning into a construction project manager role, following stints in architecture training and then project management at Blenheim Palace.

She said: "Working in what is a traditionally male-dominated environment can be daunting especially as a young woman.

"However, I am in a fortunate position to have a female line manager who has navigated and led in a male-dominated sector for years.

Oxford Mail: Aimee Akinola and Kelly Whitton, her line manager and head of built heritageAimee Akinola and Kelly Whitton, her line manager and head of built heritage (Image: Pete Seaward)

"She taught me the importance of resilience and being assertive."

Ms Akinola spoke of the apprenticeship pathway as a fertile learning environment that helped her acquire and practice skills daily.

She had spent five years at university but wanted a career change.

She added: "Rather than going back to university for another three years, I am able to learn on the job whilst putting it into practice on a daily basis.

"This style of learning suits me very well."

She said she hopes "to be able to lead on bigger projects in the future. Maybe one day becoming head of built heritage".