Allan, aged 43, from North Shields started his career at the MOD Vickers factory in an engineering role. He quickly moved into the scaffolding industry, working onshore for coatings specialist, Pyeroy on prestigious projects all over the UK such as the refurbishment of Tower Bridge in London and on bridges across North East England.

After 16 years as an advanced scaffolder, Allan was headhunted to work offshore four years ago and successfully completed all of his mandatory offshore training with AIS Training.

The offshore lifestyle really suited him.

Allan explains: "At first I was working two weeks on, two weeks off and people couldn't understand how I could cope being away from my three children. But for me it worked really well. The long stints at home meant I actually saw far more of my family. I could even pick the kids up from school - something unheard of."

When job uncertainty hit the oil and gas industry, Allan decided to protect himself by investing in additional rope access skills. He headed straight to AIS Training for help.

Allan said: "Rope access skills are always in demand from employers so I was keen to add the certificate to my CV. I signed up for the IRATA Rope Access Level 1 course at AIS Training and successfully passed first time. The instructors were simply brilliant. As well as being extremely knowledgeable, they spend a lot of time making the course enjoyable and explaining everything in a really clear and interesting way to make sure you pass.

"Within days of passing the course, I was offered lots of work in rope access. Although I'm still weighing up my options, it's good to know that my CV is stronger and more marketable to potential employers."