October 2019





Crown Paints and Bell Decorating Group have given trainee painters and decorators at South Gloucester and Stroud College an insight into how colour and technique work together at the college’s recently opened Bell Decorating Academy, as part of a 10-workshop programme with Bell Decorating Group.


A group of 17 students at SGS College attended a morning workshop with Crown’s colour consultants as well as a demonstration of technical skills. In the afternoon the young decorators had the chance to showcase their skills in a competition devised by Crown’s technical demonstrator Kevin O’Donnell, a judge in the prestigious Apprentice Decorator of the Year competition.


The two-hour competition was designed to test the students’ painting and wallpaper application ability, working from a set specification and to be completed within the given timeframe. Kevin O’Donnell judged the competitors on their setting out, cutting-in and opacity, plus matching the pattern and clean cutting for the wallpaper element.


A close contest saw Unique Bennett chosen as the winner, with Abdinasir Dualeh and Joshua Walker taking second and third place.


Representatives from Bell Decorating Group and Crown Paints were on hand to answer any questions the students had. The team from Bell Decorating Group included their community engagement co-ordinator, Kim Lawrence, contracts supervisor Dave Murphy, and Crown’s specification sales manager for the south west region, Richard Roberts attended the workshops and competition.


Iain Johnston, business executive at SGS College added: "Here at SGS College we really value the strong links we have forged with the business community in developing these fantastic opportunities for our students. This is the start of a unique and hopefully long term partnership with an organisation that puts a huge emphasis on their apprenticeship programme to grow their future workforce".


Crown Paints’ Richard Roberts said: “We are very proud to be supporting the Bell Decorating Academy at SGS College, and it was fantastic to meet with the talented young decorators who attended the workshops. The standard of work in the competition was very impressive, and I’m sure that some of these students will go on to be leading lights of the decorating industry.”


Bell Decorating Group’s Kim Lawrence, Community Engagement Co-ordinator said: “We created the Bell Decorating Academies at colleges across the country to help painting and decorating students to gain valuable knowledge and work experience placements. Events like the one hosted at SGS provide students with the opportunity to gain hands-on experience and get to know manufacturers like Crown. It’s great to work collaboratively with Crown Paints again to help the students improve their skills and their employability.”


For more information on Crown Paints’ specification services, please call 0330 024 0310, email or visit You can also follow @CrownTradePaint on Twitter and Crown Paints on LinkedIn.