Yesterday (12th April) saw the completion of the SPARKS UK Electrical Apprentice of the Year Competition and the 2018 winner was announced as Matt Taylor from Farnborough College.

The two-day final took place at the 3M Customer Innovation Centre. Contestants had a total of ten hours to complete the most difficult test the competition has ever seen to date.

It consisted of wiring, various conduit bends, a consumer unit, switches and bulbs which were all live tested at the end of the second day.

Platinum sponsor Schneider Electric donated all of the materials for the bays, whilst BASEC provided all of the cable used throughout the competition, including all seven of the regional heats.

The test was created by EAL Product Specialist Darren Oates, who judged the competition as it travelled to seven regions throughout the UK, including Northern Ireland.

Matt Taylor attended the final with his lecturer Richard Taylor and despite the extremely close competition, he managed to come away as the overall winner.

Luc Mathlin from DCET came in at a close second and he was announced as the runner-up.

Amongst the many prizes donated by the competition’s sponsors, Schneider Electric gave away thousands of pounds worth of Schneider Electric products to Matt, Luc and their colleges.

Every entrant also took home lockout kits from gold sponsor CEF, drills from bronze sponsor Hitachi and 3M packs and Amazon vouchers from bronze sponsor 3M.

Matt Taylor, winner of the 2018 SPARKS UK Electrical Apprentice of the Year Competition, said: “I’m ecstatic – I just didn’t see myself winning. I entered to give myself a challenge and I’ve definitely achieved that.

“The other competitors were great and what I’ll take away from this is the knowledge that I can do something that I thought I couldn’t.”