Cheltenham man left in limbo after being unable to finish training course
IMAGINE paying more than £5,000 for a training course, then being told you cannot complete it?
That is the situation landscaper Oliver Allchurch, from Charlton Kings, finds himself in.
The 35-year-old had been looking to train as a plumber so he could have another avenue of income.
He paid £5,500 to sign up with Trade Qualified Limited (TQ), a Hampshire company specialising in plumbing and electrical courses.
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Oliver said the courses, which were run by Apprenticeship Training Limited (ATL) in Hartlebury, stopped in November last year.
Engineering Real Results (ERR) then offered to take over the courses, but no contract was signed with TQ to take on the students previously with ATL.
Oliver cannot gain his qualifications despite having nearly completed the course.
He said: "I can't believe what has happened.
"No one has bothered to tell us what the situation was. I wanted to open up my options, and I have been going for my classes since November 2011.
"I have sat for all my exams, I have done the classes, and had travel to Hartlebury for them. When I tried to call TQ, they told me ATL was no longer providing the classes.
"There has been no contact with them, and all the numbers they have given to me have been constantly engaged.
"It is like they have disappeared. I've paid out the entire £5,500.
"I have been trying to get in with local plumbers and no one is interested because I haven't finished my course.
"I can't reach TQ at the moment. The line is always engaged."
Phil Prosser, managing director of ERR, said he had offered to take over the students from ATL who were still under TQ.
He said negotiations started with TQ, but were not concluded.
Mr Prosser said: "We have been contacted by a few of the students about the course, but we have never taken on any of them.
"We were in talks with TQ, but we had not accepted any of their students.
"The partnership dissolved, and we were asked to service the students, but we never took on any of them.
"We want to help the students, but we can't get through to TQ at all."
ERR are offering students the opportunity to take up their own courses at cost price because of what happened.
TQ could not be contacted for comment.