An apprentice from Braintree has won a national award while working as a scientist for GlaxoSmithKline (GSK).

Former Notley High and Braintree Sixth Form student Charlotte Hughes was named as the Higher or Degree Apprentice of the Year at the National Apprenticeship Awards during an exclusive ceremony at Grosvenor House in London.

The awards are run by the National Apprenticeship Service and recognise excellence in two areas - businesses that grow their own talent with apprentices and apprentices who have made a significant contribution to their workplaces.

Miss Hughes said: “I am extremely proud and grateful to be receiving this award.

“I chose an apprenticeship because university is an expensive route to take, and university education is now commonplace.

“I am also aware many employers value relevant work experience when hiring new staff, particularly in the scientific field.

“The apprenticeship has allowed me to earn while I learn and gain industry experience far beyond what I would’ve gained at university.”

Miss Hughes now works as an associate scientist for GSK, where she has worked and studied as an apprentice since September 2015.

After completing her initial apprenticeship ahead of time in December 2017, she is now undertaking a top-up qualification that will award her a bachelor of science degree from the University of Kent in two years.

She added: “I am extremely positive about my future as I have gained a permanent position at GSK and will start my bachelor’s degree this year.

“I truly believe my apprenticeship has allowed me to grow as a person and in my self-confidence.”