AN EVENT to help boost young people's career opportunities in Ryedale has been hailed a success.

Opportunity Knocks, organised by a team led by Ryedale District Council, NYBEP Ltd and Derwent Training Association, provides students from year's eight to 13 with the chance to network and interact with businesses to help to raise their awareness about local career training and apprenticeship opportunities.

This year's event, held at Lady Lumley's School in Pickering, involved 20 companies and 400 school pupils from all four of Ryedale’s secondary schools.

Councillor Linda Cowling, Leader of Ryedale District Council, said: “Opportunity Knocks 2014 has proved to be a massive success for all those involved,” said Councillor Linda Cowling, Leader of Ryedale District Council.

“Local schoolchildren at a key point in making decisions on their futures are able to meet local businesses and get face to face advice on the best way to achieve their chosen careers. I look forward to future events.”

David Macdonald , general manager, The Talbot Hotel, in Malton said: , ‘’This was my first time at the event and I am happy to say that it was very much worthwhile.

"An opportunity to speak to hundreds of students over the day is not one to be missed and I was impressed with the organisation and flow of the day."

Mr Macdonald added: "The students had clearly been prepared for the event and had lots of pertinent questions and showed a genuine enthusiastic approach to all the stands. Further to this it has been a good networking opportunity for the Talbot Hotel and Malton Cookery School to meet like minded business across a variety of sectors. I look forward to attending next year.’’ Companies from a range of sectors took part in Opportunity Knocks 2014 including : Forum Energy Technologies (UK) Ltd, Swinton Technology, Marshall Aerospace, North York Moors National Park, Derwent Training Association, JTL Training, Rosti, Access to Music, Third Energy UK, Ryetools Ltd, McClarrons Insurance, Tyro Training, Yormed, Adult Learning Services, Jobcentre Plus, Askham Bryan College, James Fisher Nuclear, Ellis Patents, MM Microwave and The Talbot Hotel.

Louise Lunn, business liaison manager at Ryedale District Council, said: “ We are so fortunate that companies in Ryedale that take part in this annual event recognise the importance of linking with students at an early age to help them influence their career choices in the future.”