Stoke Staffs LEP
College benefits from cutting-edge training equipment

College benefits from cutting-edge training equipment

Hundreds of students are benefiting from new state-of-the-art training equipment thanks to funding unlocked through the LEP’s City Deal.

The Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire City Deal, which was agreed with central government last March, included a £1.45m capital grant from the Skills Funding Agency to deliver the first phase of an Advanced Manufacturing Training Hub.

The hub involves separate sites across sites throughout Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire, including Stoke on Trent College, which has used £604,000 from the fund to purchase new equipment, including a new body spray-painting bay that will be used for body repair and painting techniques, along with a body jig and motor vehicle rigs to train the local workforce with up-to-date skills in accident and maintenance repair.

Other facilities which have been installed at the college’s Burslem campus include a welding robot and lathes for training in high-tech precision welding and engineering manufacturing, and a specialist equipment to enable students to learn about solar thermal and heat pump technologies.

The investment will benefit more than 420 students currently enrolled on full-time courses and apprenticeships in subjects such as engineering, fabrication and welding, machining, and motor vehicle maintenance. The motor vehicle equipment is also being used by trainees from Bentley, in Crewe.

Paul Johnson, the college’s assistant director engineering and motor vehicle, said: “As technology in the engineering and motor vehicle industry advances there becomes an imperative need for new skills to be developed in the area.

“Having this new equipment is a huge boost to the local economy. It shows that steps are being made to ensure Stoke-on-Trent experiences strong growth moving forward.”

LEP chairman David Frost said: “It is rewarding to see students learning invaluable industry skills which will really set them up in their careers. This is a real mark of success for the Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering Skills Hub – creating a future workforce for world-leading companies.”

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