Queen's Silver Medal Prize

Congratulations to Pendennis Surface Finisher Billy Hamilton, who last week was awarded the Prize for Most Notable Endeavour in the The Worshipful Company of Shipwrights Queen’s Silver Medal. Billy graduated from Pendennis’ Surface Finishing Apprenticeship scheme last year and now works full time in Pendennis’ Finishing department.

The Queen’s Silver Medal (QSM) was instituted in 1944 by His Majesty King George VI, Permanent Master of the Shipwrights’ Company, to be awarded to the Shipyard Apprentice of the Year. Today the scheme is run each year by calling for nominations from every known yard in the United Kingdom, the best are then selected by the Company to undertake a week’s course and evaluation at Hawkhirst on Kielder Water in Northumberland in September. The directors of the course short list six candidates to attend the Education and Charities Committee for interview in early December, at the end of which the winners are announced. In addition, the Shipwrights’ Best Company Prize is awarded to the company judged to provide the highest degree of training and support to its Apprentices during the various stages of the process.  The QSM competition is intense for the competitors but is designed and run to ensure that every individual who takes part gains considerable benefit from each stage of the experience and is provided with the opportunity to develop as a direct result.

Billy and fellow graduate apprentice Neythan Mitchell were both selected to attend the course at Kielder Water, an excellent achievement in itself, for which we congratulate them both. The course was a valuable learning experience for them and leaves them with great memories.

Billy said, “It was such a fantastic event and I have made some friends for life through competing in the QSM. We were thrown plenty of curve balls and taken out of our comfort zone, but I now know that I can face challenges I would never have thought possible before.”

In December Billy received the news that he was to be the second ever recipient of the Prize for Most Notable Endeavour and was invited to the The Queen’s Silver Medal Lunch and Presentation last week to receive his award.  The Prize for Most Notable Endeavour is for the individual whose perseverance and determination has taken them on the longest journey and can be awarded to any competitor, not just the finalists of the competition.

Justin Broomhead, who oversees Pendennis’ Surface Finishing Apprentices commented, “I think the QSM is a great challenge for all of the competitors and is certainly one that I recommend to all Pendennis apprentices. The Company keep the details of the day-to-day tasks very secret as they like to see how the participants deal with on-the-spot pressure and problem-solving tasks. The awards ceremony is like nothing else I have ever been to – steeped in tradition and quality, it truly is an honour to be a part of such a prestigious event.”

Billy joins our list of previous successful entrants in the Queen’s Silver Medal and recognitions for Pendennis’ Apprenticeship Scheme:

2006 Bronze Medal Winner – Tim Tregear

2010 Best Company Prize Winner – Pendennis Shipyard

2010 Queen’s Silver Medal Winner – Tom Clegg

2012 Best Company Prize Winner – Pendennis Shipyard

2013 Bronze Medal Winner – Matthew Angove

2013 Derek Kimber Prize Winner – Samuel Jones

2014 Bronze Medal Winner – Joe Chambers

2016 Queen’s Silver Medal Winner – Joshua McKnight

2019 Prize for Most Notable Endeavour – Billy Hamilton

You can learn more about the QSM competition here:  http://www.shipwrights.co.uk/education/queens-silver-medal