A new scheme, one of the first of its kind in the country, is ensuring the future of Cornish construction is "fit for work."

Budding carpenters, bricklayers and plasterers are receiving industry-specific fitness training as part of a brand new employability module provided alongside training in their chosen trades.

The six-week practical programme is called Fit for College: Fit for Work and will prepare students for the physically demanding workplace by teaching them safe lifting techniques, alongside ways to develop their own personal strength.

The first course has just been delivered and saw 28 carpentry students successfully complete the programme. Each student undertook observational assessments on safe movement of materials and weights, and demonstrated an understanding of being healthy and ensuring physical wellbeing.

The students were all awarded a certificate endorsed by leading names from the construction industry, Bovis Homes and Screwfix.

Developed and designed by Truro and Penwith College’s health, wellbeing and sport team, the majority of the technique training takes place in the college’s fitness suite, with some industry-specific practical sessions being undertaken in the construction workshops.

Cheryl Mewton, director of studies at Truro and Penwith College, said: “We recognise the importance of ensuring that our students are prepared for the work place, and developing employability skills is one of our key focuses. The Fit for College: Fit for Work training ensures our students undertake specific individual development that industry experts consider to be best practice.”

Following the success of the programme, the health, wellbeing and sport team will be working with senior management at the college to look at other areas of study where the project can be rolled out.