Blog Type, Fellowship Blog, Fellowship Type, Sector based Fellowships | February 2017

Catherine McKinnell MP Steps Up a Gear at Orange Bus

MP for Newcastle North, Catherine McKinnell, visited Orange Bus on Friday 10 February to learn more about training and apprentices at the Newcastle based digital strategy company.

Catherine’s visit took place as part of her Industry and Parliament Trust (IPT) Fellowship* exploring the opportunities and challenges facing local employers. Since its launch in 2006, Orange Bus has gone from strength to strength employing over 75 people and recently winning the Large Digital Agency of the Year at the Northern Digital Awards 2017.

During the visit, Catherine met Julian Leighton (Orange Bus CEO), Mike Parker (Orange Bus CTO) and Kris Kennedy (Orange Bus MD), who talked to her about Orange Bus’s history as well as how the company provides solutions to business challenges for both the public and private sector. Catherine then found out about how Orange Bus are supporting apprenticeships and developing tech talent within the North East in order to boost its workforce of the future.

Julian and Mike also explained to Catherine about Orange Bus’s ambitious expansion plans for the future and Catherine was taken on a tour of the offices where she was able to see first-hand how the company is expanding to accommodate its growing team.

Catherine’s IPT Fellowship is helping her to gain an increased understanding of the employment issues and opportunities available across her constituency, supporting her work as a member of the Education Select Committee and as Co-Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Apprenticeships.

Commenting on the visit Catherine McKinnell MP said:

“I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to Orange Bus this morning and it is fantastic to see such a young and ambitious company flourishing in Newcastle. The work Orange Bus is doing to support and promote apprenticeships and develop talent is extremely impressive and I am delighted that although Orange Bus is expanding, they are committed to keeping their base in the North East.”

Julian Leighton, CEO of Orange Bus, added:

“I was delighted to be able to host Catherine at Orange Bus this morning as part of her IPT Fellowship. Catherine is obviously passionate about apprenticeships and training in the North East and this is something which came across clearly during her visit.”


Notes to Editor:

*Fellowships are educational, non-lobbying attachments for parliamentarians, providing a unique perspective of the challenges and issues facing UK industry. Fellowships are available to all parliamentarians, including MPs, Peers and senior House staff from the Houses of Parliament, and also for MEPs from the European Parliament. They can take place in a range of organisations, from FTSE 100 companies to SMEs and voluntary organisations.