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Spades hit the ground at Chatteris training school



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Work has officially started on a new £3million training facility in Fenland.

Cambridgeshire Mayor Dr Nik Johnson was joined by MP for North East Cambridgeshire Steve Barclay to mark the start of building work for a new training school based at Stainless Metalcraft in Chatteris.

The facility is funded by a £3.16 million Local Growth Fund grant through the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority Business Board and is planned to be finished in spring 2022.

Digging in to start the work on the new facility are from left: Chris Boden, Steve Barclay, Martin Lawrence and Nik Johnson. (49815381)
Digging in to start the work on the new facility are from left: Chris Boden, Steve Barclay, Martin Lawrence and Nik Johnson. (49815381)

Also joining the event was Martin Lawrence, commercial director of Stainless Metalcraft.

The facility will provide training across a range of vocational subjects for between 80 and 130 apprentices each year. The apprentices will then be equipped to find good careers in the local economy and help businesses meet their skills needs, including at Stainless Metalcraft.

The Combined Authority has a strategy to invest in the growth of advanced manufacturing in the region, tackling areas where there are skills deficits like Peterborough and Fenland, and open up new jobs and opportunities for people.

From left Chris Boden, Steve Barclay and Nik Johnson at the start of work on the new facility. (49815386)
From left Chris Boden, Steve Barclay and Nik Johnson at the start of work on the new facility. (49815386)

The training school is part of a longer-term ambition to create an advanced manufacturing innovation launchpad in Chatteris, aligned with the aim of the Combined Authority’s Local Industrial Strategy aim to promote growth in the sector.

A provider to deliver the training at the school will be in place in due course.

Mayor Dr Johnson said: “If we want to tackle disadvantage and support a more equal, fair recovery from Covid-19 then we can’t do much better than invest in the future of our young people by providing places whether they can get the skills they need to thrive.

“There is already a fine manufacturing and engineering heritage in this region, exemplified by Stainless Metalcraft, and this centre will help one of the Combined Authority’s priority industry sectors continue to thrive into the 21 st Century.”

Mr Lawrence said: “We’re delighted work is now underway on the training school. Our apprenticeship programme has provided training for local people for more than 100 years and half our senior management team began their own careers as apprentices. As recipients of the Queen’s Award for Enterprise for Creating Opportunity through Social Mobility, we’re committed to creating rewarding, long-term careers in the local area and this new training school will play a key part in realising that vision.”

Mr Barclay said: “Well done to Stainless Metalcraft; this milestone is a great tribute to everyone in their team. The key to levelling up is skills and that’s what this is about. As we come out of the pandemic, everything is about jobs, jobs, jobs. It is great to have the community, the Mayor, Councillor Chris Boden as leader of the district council and myself coming together with our business leaders and it is very exciting for the future.”

Nitin Patel, member of the Business Board, said: “I’m delighted that this project backed by the Business Board has moved to another key milestone.

“We’re here to invest in our industry, and invest in people to help them into good jobs most demanded in the local economy. This is just the start of a broader vision for Chatteris to be at the centre of an innovation boom in advanced manufacturing in this region over the coming decades.”



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