A plumbing apprentice from Northern Ireland has been rewarded for his skill, professionalism and quality of work with a gold medal in the international WorldSkills 2015 competition.
Gary Doyle, 21, is celebrating his win after going head to head with plumbers from 27 other countries.
The event, held in Sao Paulo, Brazil, was the largest competition in WorldSkills history, showcasing over 50 skills and 1200 competitors across three days in August.
Watched by around 200,000 visitors and working within a strict time limit of 21 hours, Mr Doyle’s task was to design a towel rail, order materials accurately, install heating, underfloor heating and hot/cold water systems, sanitary ware and a shower. He also had to install and commission a WC before handing over to a customer as part of a live task.
Employed by Kieran Trainor Plumbing & Heating and a student at Southern Regional College, he was a previous silver medal winner at SkillPLUMB 2013 before being selected to compete on an international stage at WorldSkills.
BPEC, organiser of the SkillPLUMB competition, was involved in the WorldSkills selection, training and development process and provided strategic support to Mr Doyle and his training manager Paul Dodds.
“What a great achievement not only for Gary but also for the UK plumbing industry – we really are on top of the world,” said Neil Collishaw of BPEC.
“Gary did exceptionally well and should be bursting with pride at what he has accomplished. His success is not only testament to his fantastic skills but also the support from his employer, college and training manager,” he added.
In addition to receiving the WorldSkills gold medal, Mr Doyle and his fellow competitors were also presented with a World Plumbing Council medal for promoting the plumbing industry at international level.
Competitors from this year’s SkillPLUMB UK final, taking place in November during The Skills Show at Birmingham’s NEC, have the opportunity to be selected for the next WorldSkills event that will take place in Abu Dhabi in 2017.