As part of our commitment to the Mill Street makeover in Perth we are giving five long-term unemployed local men a step-up onto the jobs ladder
We have teamed up with Perth and Kinross Council and The Hub in the city’s South Street to give the group hands-on work experience as the city’s “Cultural Quarter” takes shape.
The local authority grant aided employability scheme is designed to provide a stepping stone into regular work and Kilmac is a company eager to bolster our local workforce.
Managing director Athole McDonald explains: “When we won the Mill Street contract we decided to take on five men initially suggested by the council, with scope for more during the second phase around Perth Theatre.
“Initially they committed to a two-week trial and now they are working on-site with our foreman Derek Riddoch handling the mentoring role and every Wednesday they are seconded for training specific to the demands of a construction site.
“When the 12 weeks are up we are keen to add them to the Kilmac team. A similar scheme we ran with the council in Dundee proved successful. We took on three full-time and one of the guys is now a trainee engineer. It has proved a life-changing experience for him.
“Hopefully the five we have taken on as part of the Mill Street project will seize the opportunity given to them. As a company we are keen to continue our expansion programme and this scheme gives long-term unemployed a foot in the door.
“The opportunity is certainly there and now it is up to them to embrace it over the next few weeks.”
Our decision to contrast the old with the new in Mill Street has taken a trick with passers-by and shoppers.
Staff are reporting great feedback as locals and visitors to Perth as huge photographs on the Mill Street site office hoarding catches their eye.
We acquired old black and white photographs from the Perth Museum collection - dating back to 1932 and 1974.
“One photo captures workmen digging up Mill Street more than 80 years ago and people are intrigued by the cars in the picture from the seventies,” says Athole.
“It also gives us a chance to flag-up our image of what Mill Street will look like when the project is complete.”
So why not take a trip down memory lane next time you are in Perth city centre?