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Motor technician named Suzuki Apprentice of the Year

A motor technician from Cirencester car dealership Pebley Beach has been named Suzuki Apprentice of the Year, while a senior colleague from the firm's Swindon branch has been named among the top technicians in the UK.

Jai Gill (19) won the Suzuki Apprentice of the Year accolade for his achievements during his first year of a three-year apprenticeship.

His achievements were recognised at an awards ceremony Suzuki's headquarters in Milton Keynes in what was a double night of celebration for Pebley Beach, as former Apprentice of the Year finalist Arron Smith – who started his career as an apprentice in 2005, and is based at the firm’s Swindon dealership – was named one of the top six Suzuki apprentices in the UK.

After a footballing injury scuppered his chances of joining the Army as a motor mechanic, Jai worked as a pallbearer for a firm of undertakers before joining the Suzuki dealership in August 2017.

The former Deer Park School pupil underwent constant assessment during his first year, and every two months would spend a week in a classroom environment at Suzuki's training centre in Doncaster.

"We were assessed on all kinds of things, from giving a vehicle a visual health check to manual work like drilling and riveting," said Jai.

"We were marked on the tasks we'd done during the year, and I think that's where I picked up points. 

"Pebley Beach is such a supportive environment, and the team are keen for me to work on all aspects of motor maintenance – under strict supervision, of course. I learnt so much in my first year."

Pebley Beach's workshop maintains, services and MoTs any make or model of car – giving Jai experience in working with a wide range of marques. 

His favourite part of the job is diagnosis. "I like helping motorists who come in with a problem, identifying the fault, and fixing their car for them,' said Jai. 

And the youngster has set himself high standards: "I'm in year two of my apprenticeship now, and after year three I can work towards becoming a fully qualified technician and, eventually, a master technician."

Managing director Dominic Threlfall said: "We had high hopes for Jai and we're delighted that he has done so well in his first year. We look forward to more successes in years to come.

"If he can be half as good as Arron that’s classified as a result.”

"Arron joins a number of other Pebley Beach staff recognised as being among the highest qualified in the country.

"I've been an advocate of quality apprenticeships for as long as I've been in business, and the recognition of Jai, Arron and other members of the team prove that investing in apprenticeships can provide an employer with excellent fully-qualified staff for the long term."

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Financial Disclosure

Pebley Beach Limited is an Appointed Representative of Automotive Compliance Ltd, who is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA No 497010). Automotive Compliance Ltd’s permissions as a Principal Firm allows Pebley Beach Limited to act as a credit broker, not as a lender, for the introduction to a limited number of lenders and to act as an agent on behalf of the insurer for insurance distribution activities only.

We can introduce you to a selected panel of lenders, which includes manufacturer lenders linked directly to the franchises that we represent. An introduction to a lender does not amount to independent financial advice and we act as their agent for this introduction. Our approach is to introduce you first to the manufacturer lender linked directly to the particular franchise you are purchasing your vehicle from, who are usually able to offer the best available package for you, taking into account both interest rates and other contributions. If they are unable to make you an offer of finance, we then seek to introduce you to whichever of the other lenders on our panel is able to make the next best offer of finance for you. Our aim is to secure the best deal you are eligible for from our panel of lenders. Lenders may pay a fixed commission to us for introducing you to them, calculated by reference to the vehicle model or amount you borrow. Different lenders may pay different commissions for such introductions, and manufacturer lenders linked directly to the franchises that we represent may also provide preferential rates to us for the funding of our vehicle stock and also provide financial support for our training and marketing. But any such amounts they and other lenders pay us will not affect the amounts you pay under your finance agreement, all of which are set by the lender concerned. If you ask us what the amount of commission is, we will tell you in good time before the Finance agreement is executed. All finance applications are subject to status, terms and conditions apply, UK residents only, 18’s or over. Guarantees may be required.