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High achieving students from Chester are celebrating after receiving prizes for exceptional performance at West Cheshire College’s annual Freemen and Guilds Awards Evening (7th November 2011) at the Guild Hall in Chester.

The prizes, given out to 15 students from the College, recognise the hard work and achievement of students working in industry and commerce in the North West.

The awards are a tradition spanning back to 1968 and represent the historic bond between education and the companies of the Freemen and Guilds, who support the recruitment and training of Apprentices within their trades.

The companies that make up the Freemen and Guilds of Chester include Clothworkers, Walkers and Masons Company; Cappers, Pinners, Wierdrawers & Linendrapers and Victuallers and Saddlers and Curriers.

Thomas Challoner, 19, from Chester won the award for Saddlers and Curriers for his work during his Advanced Apprenticeship in Vehicle Maintenance and Repair. He said: “I did the Apprenticeship through my job at a garage. It was great to have hands-on experience whilst learning and really helped me to improve my skills.

“I’ve finished my Apprenticeship now and I’m still working at the garage. I’m shocked to have won the award but I’m really pleased.”

Shannon Williams, 17, from Chester won the Freemen and Guild 14-16 Pre-Apprentice Award for Outstanding Achievement. She said: “I studied hair and beauty while I was at high school as it’s something I’ve always been interested in. I really enjoyed studying it and I’ve since signed up to the Level 2 Hair and Beauty Make-Up course at College.

“I really enjoy the course and I’ve learnt so much from it. We’ve covered a variety of things like styling for a photoshoot and I’ve done a two-week work experience placement which was great experience.

“In the future I would really like to work on a cruise ship and eventually one day I would like to open my own salon.”

West Cheshire College Principal, Sara Mogel who presented the awards, said: “The Freemen and Guilds Awards are one of the highlights of the College’s calendar and it is important to keep their tradition alive as well as recognise the students who have worked so hard.”

For more information about West Cheshire College call the College hotline on 01244 656 555 or visit

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