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From footballer to a career in construction

Alsager’s Shaun Miller has swapped the football pitch for a building site in Congleton, embarking upon a brand new career aged 34.

Having enjoyed a fulfilling career as a professional footballer playing for Crewe Alexandra, Sheffield United, Coventry City FC and Bolton Wanderers, Shaun was well aware that his time with the beautiful game was coming to an end.  Having been interested in construction whilst at school he started to make enquiries regarding roles in construction locally.

Bellway North West, who are currently building one, two, three, four and five bedroom homes at Somerford Gate on Black Firs Lane in Congleton, immediately saw potential in Shaun and enlisted him on its apprentice scheme on a three month trial basis.

Having successfully impressed Bellway during this initial period, Shaun was taken on by the housebuilder on a permanent basis and is a trainee assistant site manager at Somerford Gate, just 20 minutes from his home.

Shaun says: “I knew I would need to change career paths as my football career came to an end and so I approached a number of North West-based housebuilders to see what opportunities they could offer me.

“Bellway responded with a really strong apprenticeship scheme that incorporated training and NVQs, alongside working full time on site.  I am loving working on site.  As a footballer I spent a lot of time outdoors training and playing matches, so being in the fresh air is great.  I was mentally ready for a change so this experience is new and exciting for me and I am enjoying every second.

“The training is superb and I am looking forward to achieving some qualifications and in due course, furthering my construction career with Bellway.  I have my sights set on an assistant site manager role next, before progressing to site manager in time, and who knows, even further!”

Ian Hopkins, construction director at Bellway North West, adds: “Bellway’s apprenticeship scheme is ideal for someone like Shaun looking for a career change, as no prior experience is required and we provide on-site experience, full training and educational opportunities, with future job progression very much in mind.  Shaun has proved himself to be a hard working, committed construction professional in just a few short months and we are thrilled to have him part of the Bellway team.”

Shaun concludes: “Construction is an excellent industry to get into as housing demand remains high across the UK.  Apprenticeship and trainee schemes are a brilliant way to start a brand new career as prior experience is not necessary, which was perfect for me.  Plus there are so many qualifications to gain, which is great as it means you can pick several modules and learn from each one, taking away a vast amount of construction knowledge.”

Away from work, Shaun still plays football part time.  He has three boys, aged two, six and eight, who occupy much of his spare time.  The oldest two boys play football and Shaun loves watching them, as well as enjoying family days on a Sunday.

There is currently a selection of three and four bedroom homes available at Somerford Gate, with prices starting from £319,995.

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