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11th Mar 2018
Keys Fine Art Auctioneers apprentices Oscar Crocker left and Freddie Knight with associate director Tracey Rust Andrews

Two Norfolk teenagers are pursuing their dreams of a career in the fine art and antiques world after starting on a new apprenticeship scheme set up by East Anglia’s leading auction house.

Eighteen-year-old Oscar Crocker and Freddie Knight, 17, are the first to take part in the scheme, which has been created by Keys Fine Art Auctioneers in Aylsham.  The pair will study for business administration qualifications while working full-time at the firm.

Oscar has joined the apprenticeship scheme after completing his A-levels in his home town of Sheringham.  Currently working in Keys’ Fine Antiques and Interiors department, he realised he wanted to turn his long-standing interest in militaria into a career after what he describes as a ‘Eureka’ moment while on holiday in Greece.

Meanwhile Freddie has joined the scheme on a two year apprenticeship after taking his GCSEs.  From Norwich, he has been interested in antiques from an early age, inspired by his grandmother, a keen collector.  Currently gaining experience in the firm’s Fine Art department, he has a particular interest in mid 20th century furniture.

“It is vitally important for the profession that we convince young people that there is a worthwhile career path in antiques and fine arts,” said Tracey Rust-Andrews, associate director at Keys Fine Art Auctioneers.

“We have created these apprenticeship opportunities very much with an eye on the future, both of Keys and the wider profession.  The auction world has traditionally been a very difficult place for young people to break into, which means that in the past we have missed out on promising talent.

“As Keys continues to grow, we will need a new generation of enthusiastic and knowledgeable experts, and this scheme is the first step in ensuring that we grow that talent in-house.”