APPRENTICES from an Essex-based technology firm have been shortlisted for a national award backed by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg.

The team from e2v in Chelmsford has made it into the final eight of the Brathay Apprentice Challenge 2014 after being crowned champions of the London and South East region.

The shortlist was revealed during a special reception at the House of Commons by Nick Clegg this morning.

During the competition, apprentices at e2v have completed a number of community projects including refurbishing Hatfield Peverel Cricket Club's pavilion and Chelmsford Scout Hut.

George Williams, advanced apprentice engineer, said: "We are really pleased that the judges have put us through to the final and recognised our hard work.

"In these past three months we have be able to make a positive impact to our local community while also becoming closer as a team.

"We are looking forward to the final to prove that we has the country’s best apprentice team."

The winning team will be announced on June 11.