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In your role you will learn to sustainably harvest fish and shellfish and learn a range of fishing methods from static gears such as shellfish pots through to modern, selective, high-tech trawl equipment. This is an excellent opportunity for a smart, ambitious and self-motivated individual to join a friendly environment.

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Closing date: 12 Feb 2023

Apprenticeship summary

  • Annual wage


  • Working week

    Shift days and times to be decided upon appointment

    Total hours per week: 40

  • Expected duration

    18 Months

  • Possible start date

    19 Feb 2023

  • Date posted

    12 Jan 2023

  • Apprenticeship level

    Level 2 (GCSE)

  • Reference number


  • Positions

    1 available

What will the apprentice be doing?

In your role you will learn to sustainably harvest fish and shellfish and learn a range of fishing methods from static gears such as shellfish pots through to modern, selective, high-tech trawl equipment.

You will be expected to work as part of a team, both onshore and at sea. In your daily work, you will interact with the skipper, boat owners and crew members and fisheries observers. They may include: Enforcement officers, Port and authorities, Scientists and Safety advisors. Onshore, you may have contact with logistics companies, harbour staff and fish market employees.

You will be involved in the entire end-to-end process

  • Catch, process, store and land the fish (or shellfish). · Log details of the catch and report them to the skipper or boat owner. This may include the species caught along with estimates of size and weight
  • Setting up the fishing gear and fit it to a boat and watch-keep on a navigational passage to and from fishing grounds
  • Deploy and retrieve gear & use onboard hydraulics and powered machinery. · Collect data for policy makers. This data informs plans for fishing, catch limits and quotas to ensure stocks remain sustainable
  • Adapt to seasonal changes and vary approach to catch different types of fish. Also adapting approaches in response to the sea, tides, and weather conditions
  • Complying with maritime and safety Regulations.
  • Using and maintaining personal protective equipment

This is a rewarding occupation. It involves working outdoors and can be physically demanding. You will initially work on a traineeship with South Devon College including sea survival, an ENG1 Medical before progressing to the Level 2 Fisher apprenticeship.

What training will the apprentice take and what qualification will the apprentice get at the end?

  • As part of the apprenticeship programme you are required to complete an initial traineeship, where you will attend college for 3 weeks, with 1 day a week to focus on maths, English and ICT. The remaining 4 days a week will be subject specific learning, including a sea survival course and an ENG1 Medical to ensure you are fit to go to Sea. You will then spend a minimum of 70 hours over a 4 week period, on board the fishing vessel
  • On progression to the 18 month Level 2 Apprenticeship, you will attend college on block delivery for a whole week, approximately every 6 weeks, where you will be supported to achieve the following 7 qualifications required as part of the apprenticeship as well as the knowledge, skills and behaviours required to become a Fisher
  • Complete basic training approved by any Maritime Administration which is signatory to the Seafarers Training Certification and Watchkeeping (STCW) convention
  • 1-day Seafish Fishermen’s basic sea survival or STCW Personal Survival Techniques
  • 1-day Seafish Fishermen’s basic firefighting and prevention or 2 day STCW Fire Fighting and Fire Prevention
  • 1-day Seafish Fishermen’s basic first aid or STCW Elementary First Aid (1 day)
  • 1-day Seafish basic health and safety covering: know your vessel, understanding roles and responsibilities, maintaining effectiveness, working safely on a fishing vessel, dealing with emergencies
  • Certificated 5-day Seafish Navigation and Watchkeeping course
  • Certificated 5-day Marine Coastguard Agency (MCA) Approved Engine Course Diesel Engine course
  • Certificated 1-day Seafish Stability Awareness for Experienced Fishermen course
  • Certificated 1-day Seafish Advanced Stability Awareness course
  • Certificated Royal Yacht Association VHF Short Range Certificate
  • Successful completion means individuals can become members of the National Federation of Fisherman’s Organisation (NFFO)

What is the expected career progression after this apprenticeship?

Progression opportunities include:

  • Experienced deckhand mate, skipper of the boat, onboard marine engineer, onboard chef/ fisher on larger boats, fisheries science/ observer, gear technologist, offshore survey and energy worker. There are also opportunities to become self-employed and a boat owner

Requirements and prospects

Desired skills and personal qualities

Communication skills, Attention to detail, Organisation skills, Problem solving skills, Logical, Team working, Patience, Physical fitness


GCSE or equivalent English (Grade 4/C) Desired
GCSE or equivalent Maths (Grade 4/C) Desired

Things to consider

This is a rewarding occupation. It involves working outdoors and can be physically demanding.

About the employer

The Blue Sea Food Company is an environmentally conscious organisation that acknowledges the potential impact our operations may have on the sustainability of the UK and EU crab fishery, fishing communities and the marine environment. We are also committed to ensuring the welfare of all the shellfish we handle. We endeavour to employ practices designed to reduce stress and maximise quality from landing all the way through to humane dispatch. All of our crab and lobsters are caught using pots or creels design to enable escape of juvenile animals and allow eventual escape of all over time. Pots are checked regularly and retrieved if lost to avoid ‘ghost’ fishing.








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Training provider



Tina Smee

Apprenticeship standard


Level 2 (GCSE)

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