Mark Nevin’s fantastic achievement at WorldSkills came as no surprise to the marketing, sales and training teams at Crown Trade. They have watched this young Scot go from strength to strength in his career after scoring exceptionally high marks in the 2005 national final of the Crown Trade Young Decorator of the Year Competition, walking away with the coveted title, trophy and a cheque for £1000.

Debbie Orr Crown Trade Brand Manager said: “Mark’s success is well deserved. He’s a very talented, determined young man and a credit to everyone who been in involved in his training over the years and of course to John, his father, in whose footsteps he has followed.

“On behalf of everyone at Crown Trade, and indeed everyone at Crown Paints, I’d like to offer him our warmest congratulations and best wishes. We’re immensely proud to have been there at the beginning, recognising and encouraging his talent at an early stage. Because of our partnership with SkillBuild and Construction Skills, we were able to offer Mark a unique opportunity to compete on an international stage as a result of his brilliant performance in the Crown Trade Young Decorator national final four years ago, and we were obviously thrilled to see him win in Calgary.”

Mark has very clear memories of the Crown Trade competition that provided the stepping stone to the WorldSkills event in 2009. “I was there with one objective…to win. I realised I was up against the best in the country and that I only had one crack at it so I focussed all my efforts on doing the very best I possibly could.

“Others will tell you about the camaraderie and the social side of being away from home for this demanding three day event but I spent each evening on my own, completely tee-total, reading, checking and rechecking every last detail of the specifications and instructions for the test piece we all had to work on. The Crown Trade competition instils a discipline in you – to get the basics absolutely right at the outset and to then to carry on paying attention to detail at every stage of the project. It was a great foundation for all the competitions that have followed, none more so than WorldSkills.”

Mark is a great role model for anyone setting out on a painting and decorating career and proof of what can be achieved by those entering Crown Trade’s event, now renamed the Apprentice of the Year Competition. He has one last word of advice for any young decorators keen to emulate his success: “My motto is: Stay completely focussed all the way through. If you don’t have the mindset to win, you won’t!”