A FORMER Clitheroe apprentice has come full circle by offering his former employer’s son an apprenticeship.

Clitheroe’s Derek Austin employed Kieron Bardsley in 1990 as his apprentice at his firm, Derek Austin and Son Plumbers and Heating Engineers.

Kieron also studied one day a week at Blackburn College and won an Apprentice of the Year award in 1992.

Now, 20 years later, Kieron has taken on Derek’s son Lewis as his apprentice at his Ribble Valley company KIB Sustainable Energy Ltd.

Lewis also spends one day a week at Blackburn College and, to follow in Keiron’s footsteps, recently won an Apprentice of the Year award at the Apprenticeship Awards night at Scholars restaurant on the campus.

Derek, whose dad was also a plumber, said: “Kieron worked for me for around six years. He was a good apprentice and hopefully I taught him everything he knows.

“I gave up my business around three or four years ago but I am delighted Lewis is carrying on the family tradition of being a plumber and I am glad he has been employed by Kieron.”

Kieron started his own business in Clitheroe and admitted he learned a lot in those early years as an apprentice.

“I was also at Blackburn College and being at college one day a week taught me a lot.

“I took Lewis on, on merit and because of his dad.

“I think apprenticeships are the way forward as you get to train and learn on the job.”

Lewis said: “I go to Blackburn College once a week and really enjoy it. Now I have to try and follow in everyone’s footsteps and create my own business.”