Ten newly qualified warehouse operators from West Cumbria are due to depart for work in Amsterdam in a week’s time.

They will take up permanent positions with the cargo department at Schiphol Airport.

Organised by Inspira, the county’s career management and personal development organisation, and Ian Nelson of NCG Solutions, a North East training company, the 10 young men took part in a pre-employment training programme to equip them as warehouse operators.

Joshua Armstrong-Morfoot, 22, of Thornhill, near Egremont, said:"I was unemployed for almost 12 months before seeing this opportunity and thought it was the chance of a lifetime.

"I am looking forward to experiencing a different culture and putting my newly learned skills into practice.”

As warehouse operators, they will be responsible for unloading deliveries from around the world, stacking and wrapping pallets or freight forwarding to countries around Europe.

Chris Gibson, deputy area manager for Inspira in West Cumbria, came across the opportunity and thought it would be something different to offer unemployed people in West Cumbria.

During the pre-employment programme, the candidates undertook rigorous training, which included basic employability skills; completing application forms, and developing team building skills as well as completing the level two warehouse operator course.

Though it will be a challenging role in one of the busiest airports in Europe, the new recruits can’t wait.

Josh Craig, 21, of Workington said: “I enjoyed meeting the people on the course new and forming a solid bond with those I will be working with in the future.

"I am looking forward to the experience this new challenge is going to give me.

"I’m grateful for the opportunity as things like this don’t seem to happen around here very often.”

Mr Gibson said that Inspira would be running the course again in the autumn and urged other employers who have vacancies to get in touch with him as Inspira has access to training and personal development funding to support unemployed people in their journey to work.