The company, part of the Premier Group, is working with Mencap and the Bristol City Learning Communities team to help young adults move into employment. The placement leads to a national APT Certificate in Work Preparation and is the first of its kind in Bristol.

The first candidate is Aaron Smith, 30, who was teamed with yard assistant Scott Greer. Depot manager Phil Steadman said: "I can honestly say Aaron is making a real contribution to our business."

Bristol Mencap employment co-ordinator Sandy Corke said Aaron had been treated as one of the team and was thoroughly enjoying working at Clarks Wood.