This week Deputy Prime Minister and Leader of the Liberal Democrats Nick Clegg welcomed a local apprentice and employer to Parliament for the day to celebrate their successes.
Liberal Democrat MPs and Peers including Mike Thornton MP were invited to bring an apprentice and their employer to Parliament for the day.
Joining Mike was Eastleigh apprentice Jamie Doyle (pictured, middle left) and his employer Barry Stephens (pictured, right) of Arlington Fleet, based at the Eastleigh Railway Works.
Apprentices and their employers had the chance to quiz Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg during a question and answer session, as well as having their photograph taken with the leader of the Liberal Democrats.
Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said:
"The Liberal Democrats have helped to create a million jobs, now we want to create a million more and apprenticeships are crucial to that.
"Apprenticeships create new opportunities for young men and women and provide businesses with the loyal and capable staff they need to compete and expand.
"To see how much these young people have achieved through apprenticeships is inspirational.
"These young people are a credit to themselves, their employers, and an asset to our businesses.
"I want to see apprenticeships viewed as a much more mainstream route to work."
Commenting Mike Thornton MP said:
"Apprenticeships are a crucial building block for the stronger economy and fairer society we all seek."
"Through apprenticeships young people are learning the skills they need for their future careers.
"These young people are learning, not just in a classroom or lecture theatre, but in the working environment and they are getting paid for it. And for employers like Arlington Fleet, apprenticeships are incredibly useful in building up a loyal workforce."