National Apprenticeship Week 2020 – find out about our CSA to Team Leader programme

One of Central England Co-op’s most thriving and popular apprenticeships is a nationally recognised programme which gives those interested in building a career in food retail a fantastic opportunity to grow within the Society.

This National Apprenticeship Week (February 3-9) Central England Co-op is highlighting the great opportunity on offer through its CSA to Team Leader programme.

The programme offers applicants with the right attitude and desire a chance to start their career as Customer Service Assistants and develop their skill sets to become a Retail Team Leader within 12 months, all while gaining a nationally recognised qualification. 

Working as part of a multi-skilled team, the role is varied and could include working on checkouts, putting out stock, ensuring the store looks inviting, date code checking, temperature checking, administration, or even working in the in-store bakery.

It offers applicants the opportunity to complete the apprenticeship while they are working. It is a great chance to earn and gain their qualification at the same time.

Those on the programme will see 20% of their working week taken up with the completing of their apprenticeship work, with support through the programme from a tutor who each month will make contact with them either remotely or face to face.

The programme is open to people completely new to the business, as well as existing colleagues who are encouraged to speak to their managers to find out how they can progress within the business through the CSA to Team Leader programme.

Here some of the latest apprentices talk about what attracted them to embark on the programme.

Clare Addison, who already worked in store before deciding to take part, said: “This apprenticeship felt like a natural progression within my role and it also appealed as it is a nationally recognised qualification.”

Liam Dilley saw the programme advertised when looking for a role in retail. He said: “When I saw the job advertised I liked the idea of working in retail while having the opportunity to progress to a higher level at the end of the apprenticeship.

“It gives you hands on experience, so you can build confidence in the job role while learning.”

Matt Burrows also joined the Society after being attracted by the apprenticeship programme. He said: “I decided to do the CSA to Team Leader apprenticeship because it was a really good opportunity and a way to improve as well as work with an ever-expanding business.

“It gives you a better insight into the working world and a more hands on approach to training.”

People can find out more about apprenticeships at Central England Co-op at


Notes to editors

About Central England Co-operative

Central England Co-operative is one of the largest independent retail co-operative societies in the UK. 

It is a modern, forward-looking organisation employing over 8,000 staff, with the Society’s principal areas of activity being food, funeral services, travel shops, and property investment.

Central England Co-operative has over 430 trading outlets across 16 counties including; West Midlands, Warwickshire, Worcestershire, Staffordshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Rutland, Nottinghamshire, Northamptonshire, Lincolnshire, West Yorkshire, South Yorkshire, Suffolk, Norfolk, Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire.  The Society has an ambitious food store development programme for 2020.

Central England Co-operative is proud of its reputation for ethical business practices and corporate responsibility.  It is a member of Business in the Community, the membership organisation that stands for responsible business, and has also won many business awards for excellence.  The Society supports several charities including Dementia UK and invests a percentage of its trading profit into local communities.

Becoming a member of Central England Co-operative offers a whole host of benefits ranging from collecting points every time you spend in store to earn a share of the profits, access to members activities and community initiatives including the Community Dividend Fund, which hands out grants of up to £5,000 to charities and good causes across the Society’s trading estate.

Find out how to become a Central England Co-operative member by calling 0800 0501 601, emailing or visiting

For more information visit, follow Central England Co-operative on Twitter: @mycoopfood, and on Facebook:

Rob Smyth and James Brindle at Central England Co-operative on 01543 421390

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