Keeley scoops STEM challenge mentor award

July 8, 2019

A design manager from an award-winning Shropshire construction company has been named Business Mentor of the Year at a county awards event.
Keeley Fox, from Knockin-based Pave Aways, was awarded the title at the Shropshire Star STEM Challenge 2019 awards for her work with the Marches School in Oswestry.
Keeley helped students at the school develop an adapter to fit on taps and open jars or pots for persons with poor hand control.
She worked alongside the Marches team for six months guiding them along the process. This included product selection, design, programme production, building prototypes and preparing for the presentation.
Fourteen schools took part in the challenge to develop a product which had some positive impact for people or the environment using elements they had learned from STEM subjects – science, technology, engineering and maths.
The mentor award was sponsored by the Careers and Enterprise Company (CEC) in partnership with the Marches Local Enterprise Partnership.
James Staniforth, chairman of the Marches Local Enterprise Partnership skills board, said: “We are delighted to be supporting this initiative alongside the Careers and Enterprise Company.
“It provides an opportunity to engage more local employers with schools across the region. Business mentors provide far reaching benefits to schools in the form of knowledge, experience and skills and we are continuing to work with employers and educators to further build on these partnerships.”
Martin Wright, editor of the Shropshire Star, added: “Some of the ideas look like they could go into production and onto the market tomorrow – it just shows the level of talent we have in the schools in Shropshire.”
Steven Owen, managing director of Pave Aways, said the company was delighted with Keeley’s success and the work of students at Market Drayton’s Grove School and the Sir John Talbot School in Whitchurch which it also supported. The Sir John Talbot team won the Entrepreneurial Team award.
“It was a privilege to be part of this STEM Challenge and work with these groups of young people over the past six months. Their ingenuity, passion and hard work was a joy to experience and we are delighted to have been able to mentor these three teams.
“Watching them do their presentations today made us all so proud of what they have achieved in such a short time. The task now is to take the enthusiasm of the children and bring that into our work at Pave Aways. And if we struggle then we have got the best mentor in Keeley to help us through! We are already looking forward to being part of this next year.”

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The Marches Local Enterprise Partnership has now ceased trading and transferred all its functions to Shropshire Council working with Telford & Wrekin Council and Herefordshire Council, in line with the UK Government's plans for devolution.

The Marches LEP was established in 2011 and hands over an impressive legacy from its 13-year life. In that time the LEP invested over £196m in projects across the Marches, securing in excess of £100m of match funding and supported more than 66,000 business interactions.

The schemes supported have made tangible differences to local communities, increasing skills, creating jobs and improving the physical appearance of many towns.

We would like to thank all the LEP Board Members who have given their time freely over the life of the LEP, as well as all the staff who worked for the LEP over the years. We also want to thank our delivery partners, local education providers and local, regional and national stakeholders who helped us achieve so much.

The Marches Growth Hub will continue to support businesses and will be managed by Shropshire Council, supported by Telford and Wrekin and Herefordshire Councils. Each of the three Local Authorities will also continue to provide direct business support locally. Details of this support will be available through the Marches Growth Hub website and from the Local Authorities directly. Website: | email:

The Marches Careers Hub will continue to be delivered and will be managed by Shropshire Council, supported by Telford & Wrekin and Herefordshire Councils. Website: | email:

For any queries about Getting Building Fund (GBF), Local Growth Fund (LGF) and Marches Investment Fund (MIF) projects supported by the Marches LEP please contact:

For any finance queries please contact:

The solvent liquidation of the Marches LEP is being managed by the Evelyn Partners Limited. For any matter related to this please contact:

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