40 sign-ups for £4m Shropshire training hub

July 26, 2017

More than 40 young people have signed up to be among the first cohort of students at the Marches Centre of Manufacturing & Technology (MCMT) following the recent open day.
The £4m state-of-the-art training hub in Bridgnorth threw open its doors to give young people, parents and employers the opportunity to see how they can benefit from this ambitious venture that will provide ‘2020 learning opportunities by 2020’.
Ron Whittle, the Mayor of Bridgnorth, joined more than 500 visitors at the Stanmore Industrial Estate facility, which is being run by a consortium of Classic Motor Cars, Grainger & Worrall, In-Comm Training and Salop Design & Engineering.
He praised the four employers for joining forces in a bid to start solving the county’s critical skills gap and commented on the scale of the MCMT and the amount of new technology that will soon be installed.
“This was the first time we’d been able to showcase what we are doing in the nearly-finished building and the response was fantastic,” explained Matthew Snelson, Managing Director of the Marches Centre of Manufacturing & Technology.
“Over 500 visitors joined us during the 5 hours and, importantly, we had lots of school pupils keen to explore a possible career in engineering and manufacturing. Once they saw what we had planned, spoke to In-Comm about the training opportunities and saw the robotics/CNC machines we were putting in, 40 of them signed up on the spot.”
He continued: “I think we’ve captured the imagination with this venture, where a company-led approach is harnessing public sector funding to creating Apprenticeships and upskilling opportunities that will make a real difference to firms in the county.”
The Open Event was the first time people could look inside the vast 36,000 sq ft training hub, which used to be an old storage unit for Grainger & Worrall.
There was 11 employer stands present, all keen to be matched with young apprentices looking to start their first step on the engineering and manufacturing career ladder.
Some of MCMT’s key backers were also present, including ABB Robotics, Engineering Technology Group, FBC Manby Bowdler and Hexagon Metrology.
Matthew concluded: “The building should be handed over to us in a few weeks and then we’ll have the job of kitting it out with up to £2m of technology and machinery.
“We’re also still looking to recruit both employers and apprentices so there’s still time to be part of a ‘Shropshire first’.”
The Marches Centre of Manufacturing & Technology has received £1.9m of Government Growth Deal funding via the Marches LEP to bring the concept into reality, with £1.1m of private funding already pledged.
It will provide a high-tech environment for individuals to learn from engineering experts on the latest technology – all geared towards giving them opportunities to apply their new found skills on real life manufacturing situations.
Located on The Stanmore Industrial Estate in Bridgnorth, the MCMT will house dedicated fabrication, foundry, lathe, metrology, milling, robotics and vehicle trimming sections, as well as a specialist CNC Zone and spray booth/mixing capabilities.
There will also be an auditorium lecture theatre, bespoke learning environments, five vehicle ramps and a rolling road test facility.
For further information, please visit www.mcmt.co.uk or follow @marchescentre on Twitter.

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The Marches Local Enterprise Partnership has now ceased trading and transferred all its functions to Shropshire Council working with Telford & Wrekin Council and Herefordshire Council, in line with the UK Government's plans for devolution.

The Marches LEP was established in 2011 and hands over an impressive legacy from its 13-year life. In that time the LEP invested over £196m in projects across the Marches, securing in excess of £100m of match funding and supported more than 66,000 business interactions.

The schemes supported have made tangible differences to local communities, increasing skills, creating jobs and improving the physical appearance of many towns.

We would like to thank all the LEP Board Members who have given their time freely over the life of the LEP, as well as all the staff who worked for the LEP over the years. We also want to thank our delivery partners, local education providers and local, regional and national stakeholders who helped us achieve so much.

The Marches Growth Hub will continue to support businesses and will be managed by Shropshire Council, supported by Telford and Wrekin and Herefordshire Councils. Each of the three Local Authorities will also continue to provide direct business support locally. Details of this support will be available through the Marches Growth Hub website and from the Local Authorities directly. Website: www.marchesgrowthhub.co.uk | email: enquiries@marchesgrowthhub.co.uk.

The Marches Careers Hub will continue to be delivered and will be managed by Shropshire Council, supported by Telford & Wrekin and Herefordshire Councils. Website: www.marchescareershub.co.uk | email: info@marchescareershub.co.uk

For any queries about Getting Building Fund (GBF), Local Growth Fund (LGF) and Marches Investment Fund (MIF) projects supported by the Marches LEP please contact: gary.spence@shropshire.gov.uk

For any finance queries please contact: michelle.hodgkiss@shropshire.gov.uk

The solvent liquidation of the Marches LEP is being managed by the Evelyn Partners Limited. For any matter related to this please contact: Camilla.Mulholland@evelyn.com

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