Kevin Devlin, production manager of West Port Timber Windows & Doors, won the award for Leader in the recent Excellence in Cumbria Awards organised by Learning and Skills Council Cumbria.

The criteria for the award included an ability to motivate a team and apply learning and development to the team and the business as a whole, with a demonstrable positive impact on the business performance and profitability.

Sean Parnaby, West Port managing director and chairman of the Wood Window Alliance, said Mr Devlin had been extremely proactive, not only with his immediate team but in all West Port’s manufacturing areas, encouraging many people to play an active role in training and development.

West Port, which recently completed a new training suite, has a strong emphasis on training and more than 130 employees have completed courses in the past 12 months. As well as covering literacy and numeracy, the company has a continuous improvement programme through to NVQ level 2 in business improvement techniques and training courses have included health and safety, risk assessments, manual handling, work at height, team leading and specific business needs programmes with advanced machine technology and computer aided design.

As around 25% of its workforce is from eastern Europe, West Port has translated training documents and provided translators and one-to-one sessions.