Portsmouth Opportunities Fair set to inspire young people

BUSY Last year's fair. ''Picture: Malcolm Wells (123185-1061)
BUSY Last year's fair. ''Picture: Malcolm Wells (123185-1061)
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THIS year’s Portsmouth Opportunities fair is going to be music to the ears of the city’s youngsters.

A partnership between the Portsmouth Cultural Trust and some of the city’s music and performance venues will be launched at the October event, meaning for the first time young people will be able to reach direct advice on how to get started in the industry.

The launch will be a high note in an event that is already promising to get the Guildhall buzzing.

The event will take place on Saturday, October 19 from 10am until 3pm.

It is being organised by the Portsmouth and South East Hampshire Education Business Partnership on behalf of the Shaping the Future of Portsmouth initiative.

Cath Longhurst, chief executive of the EBP, said: ‘We’ve got some really good and exciting businesses coming along to the Guildhall, and we’ll also have quite a few exhibiting in the square, too.

‘There will be a lot of stuff going on, and there’ll be a real buzz, which is brilliant.’

First Bus is going to be bringing a bus along for youngsters to explore, while Raymarine will be showing off a rigid inflatable boat with an interactive trailer showing those attending how the company develops its internationally-renowned navigational gadgets.

Hampshire Fire and Rescue will also talk about careers within the fire service.

Inside the Guildhall itself, companies will fill all the rooms on the ground and first floors, offering a vast range of activities for visitors to try.

They will range from the science experiments of IBM, the simulators of BAE Systems, and cycling to make a fruit smoothie.

‘We want to ensure we get a wide range of people coming to the fair from across the city,’ said Cath.

‘We will be having lots of role models coming along, who will be wandering around the event, talking to people about their job, how they started and then how they progressed.

‘The event is about all different levels of jobs, and we think it’s getting better and better every year.

‘We’re twice as booked up now as we were at the same point last year, so our message to companies is that if they want to join in they really have to get in touch quickly.

‘It’s going to be a really exciting day.’

Entry to the event is free, and its aim is to showcase the wide range of careers and jobs on offer in Portsmouth and the surrounding area, as a way to inspire young people and raise educational attainment in the city.