Thirteen's Durham Routeways gets a ‘thumbs up’ after its first assessment

Thirteen’s Durham Routeways project has been awarded the top grading, a Grade 1, in its first assessment by DurhamWorks.

Durham Routeways Team Photo External Use

8 Apr 2019

The scheme was launched by Thirteen’s employability service in February this year and supports 16 to 24 year olds in County Durham who are not in employment, training or education. 

The service is funded by DurhamWorks as part of the Youth Employment Initiative and the assessment looked at all aspects of the scheme from the quality of the learning environment to the style of teaching. The gradings available are 1, 2 and ‘requires improvement’.  

During the assessment, DurhamWorks noted that there was clear mutual respect between the tutor and learners, and that learners were respectful of one another and worked collaboratively, seeing the relevance of content and how they could apply it to the working environment. All participants were happy with the provision and delivery of the programme and didn’t feel it could be improved.


The two-week Durham Routeways programme, in either hospitality or customer service, provides a level two qualification and guaranteed interviews for live job vacancies with local employers. The first three cohorts of young people have now completed their routeways and are currently preparing for interviews for live job vacancies, with one-to-one support from Thirteen’s employability service. 


The next Customer Service and Hospitality Routeways are now open for enrolment in Crook and Stanley. Both run from 15 to 29 April, award a Level 2 qualification on completion and offer access to interviews with local employers. The Cairn Hotel Group (Redworth Hall) is attending the Crook routeway and sharing live vacancies and the Ramside Group is attending the Stanley routeway.


Susan Borrow, employability contracts manager at Thirteen, said: “Durham Routeways offers a great opportunity for young people in County Durham to gain valuable skills and a qualification that will stand them in good stead in the future. We are over the moon with the first independent assessment of our provision and the progression already made by those who have completed our Routeways, which is testament to the hard work of our staff and the young people taking part. It gives us a solid foundation to keep building on with new participants.”


Courses take place every month in various localities across County Durham. For more information or to book a place, contact the team via email at or by calling the employment support team on 07764 695 631 or 07816 070 370.