Image of Mark Breathwick, Assistant Director of Culture and Community
Mark Breathwick, Assistant Director of Culture and Community
Published: Tuesday, 6th February 2024

This week is National Apprenticeship Week (5-11 February), and to mark the occasion we’re shining the spotlight on one of our most successful apprentices, Mark Breathwick.

Mark began his journey in 2002, aged 16, when he was recruited as an apprentice in our housing team, while studying a GNVQ in business administration – and 22 years later he’s now Medway’s Assistant Director of Culture and Community.

If you’re interested in becoming an apprentice, or know someone who might be, Mark’s story could be the inspiration you need to take the first step.

Mark’s rise through the ranks began when he was employed as Housing Support Assistant in 2003, dealing with issues like homelessness, repairs, housing register and other enquiries, before he was promoted to Homechoice Officer and Senior Health and Housing Strategy Officer. The skills and experience from those roles led him to become manager of one of the housing teams in 2009, and he undertook a Diploma in Management Studies at Canterbury Christchurch University to help him with the role, with support from the council.

Eight years later he was appointed as Head of Strategic Housing, and when the role was combined with responsibilities for Council Housing in 2018, he took the post as the council’s Head of Housing.

Among his many recent achievements, Mark also led our Homes for Ukraine scheme in 2022, supported by Tracy Partridge and Lenka Trent in the housing team, along with many other partners both internally and externally.

In October 2023, he was appointed as Assistant Director of Culture and Community, just the latest step in an amazing career that highlights the council’s dedication to apprenticeship schemes.

Shaping the future

Speaking about his journey from apprentice to assistant director with Medway Council, Mark said: “I am incredibly proud of my career at Medway, I have been working here since I was 16 and every person that I have come into contact with has supported me and provided me with opportunities to learn and take on new things. I am pleased to see that apprentices still have such an important role in the council delivering important services to the community and shaping the future of the area. We run such a broad range of services and that provides an excellent opportunity for anyone looking to undertake an apprenticeship to work in a field that they are interested in and passionate about.”

Kick-start your career

Cllr Zoe Van Dyke, Portfolio Holder for Business Management said: “Apprenticeships are one of the best ways young people can kick-start their career and put themselves on the right track for a successful future. Medway council is proud of the value it puts on apprentices, and Mark’s career is proof of how individuals and employees benefit from apprenticeship schemes. Our future is dependent on the younger generation, and we need to offer them as much support as we can.”

Medway Council remains passionate about apprenticeship posts and uses as many different apprenticeship programmes as it can. We have a dedicated Apprenticeship Academy giving advice, guidance and support to apprentices, apprenticeship programme learners and line managers.

The approach led to the council taking on 91 new apprentices between 1 April 2022 and 31 March 2023, and we currently utilise 32 different apprenticeship programmes.

Find out more about apprenticeships at Medway Council.

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