The Judges

To judge this award, we've created a panel of three judges working within the trades and construction space who between them hold a wealth of experience and knowledge in what it takes to carve out a successful career.

Together, they will be going through a shortlist of nominations to choose three deserving recipients of The Nation's A* Apprentice award.

Robert Rees - Divisional Director, Markel Direct

Rob Rees, Divisional Director at Markel Direct.

Leading Markel’s Direct division, Rob has a wealth of experience within the construction industry with over 20 years of experience within the trades’ insurance sector.

Speaking about the competition, Rob said: “As we celebrate National Apprenticeship Week, we are excited to launch this award to promote the outstanding work apprentices are doing within the UK trades and construction industry.”

Louis Timpany - CEO and Founder, Fix Radio


Having launched the builder’s radio station Fix Radio in 2017, it has become the fastest-growing radio station in the UK. Louis’ background within the construction industry helped him to identify a gap in the market for a trades focused radio station.

Speaking of the competition, Louis said: “As a station whose shows are fronted by tradesmen turned radio presenters, we all understand the key role that apprentices play within the UK construction industry.”

James Wilson - Marketing Manager, Festool

James Wilson

James is the Marketing Manager for Festool UK Ltd, a premium supplier of 18V professional power tools and accessories. He is a driven, passionate and creative leader, and firmly believes that you can be whatever you want to be – you just need to be enthusiastic, work hard, and a bit of luck.

Speaking of the competition, James said: “Festool are committed to supporting apprentices, further education and training, which is why we are excited about this amazing initiative led by Markel.”