Wednesday, September 23, 2015

News: Councils on board at TRAM 2015

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Sheffield and Rotherham Councils hope to spark interest in plans to create an Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District spanning their borders among delegates attending a global advanced manufacturing conference later this year.

The Magna Science Adventure Centre in Rotherham is to host the global metalworking industry's premier aerospace conference, TRAM 2015.

Presented by University of Sheffield's Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) with Boeing, the Association for Manufacturing Technology, Gardner Business Media and the Royal Aeronautical Society, the conference programme is a collaboration between industry, academia and the media, spotlighting the latest trends in aerospace manufacturing.

Based around the Advanced Manufacturing Park in Rotherham and surrounding Enterprise Zone, the aim is to develop Europe's largest research-led advanced manufacturing cluster. A spatial plan is expected to be complete by the end of 2015, including the exploration of a mass transit connection for the Innovation District.

In the latest devolution proposals, the leaders have asked for a £250m commitment to the Sheffield City Region, based around the Innovation District as a national demonstrator for place based innovation programmes with LEPs. It adds that "Government investment will be matched by company investment at 50% and further leveraged through local resources to deliver a £600m science and innovation programme over five years."

Professor Keith Ridgway CBE, executive dean at the AMRC, said: "Plans to develop an Innovation District, incorporating the AMRC, the Advanced Manufacturing Park, Sheffield Business Park and local businesses will reinforce this region's role as the UK’s leading location for advanced manufacturing.

"TRAM provides an ideal opportunity to promote the District and the region's skills to a truly global audience of people at the forefront of advanced manufacturing, as both Sheffield and Rotherham Councils have realised."

The council's economic development arms – Creative Sheffield and RiDO – have joined forces as Gold Sponsors of the event and delegates will get an insight into the potential for business development when they travel on council sponsored shuttle buses between their hotels and the event and during promotional tours of the region.

Cllr. Leigh Bramall, cabinet member for business, skills and development at Sheffield City Council, said: "I look forward to discussing our plans for an Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District with delegates at TRAM.

"Our unrivalled connection of industry and research-led innovation at the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) has already been a force for the agglomeration of advanced manufacturing and technology firms.

"And this critical mass of expertise and experience presents the UK with a unique opportunity to create an Innovation District of global significance, where we can design and make the next generation of whole industries.

"The innovation and expertise is already here in Sheffield and Rotherham, and ready to be built upon, to create an Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District of huge importance regionally, nationally and globally."

Cllr. Denise Lelliott, Advisory Cabinet Member for Housing and the Local Economy at Rotherham Council, added: "We have a host of attractions for business - not least available land and property within an Enterprise Zone. From our award winning business centres to the UK's Premier Advanced Manufacturing Park, businesses will discover a borough that is totally committed to manufacturing.

"Even during the economic downturn, Rotherham businesses have continued to manufacture and export goods and services, investment has been secured, and companies have expanded.

"Rotherham is continually evolving, attracting world class investment and growing its manufacturing base by providing quality commercial opportunities for the people and businesses of the borough."

Taking place on November 10 and 11, TRAM 2015 has secured speakers from the likes of Rolls-Royce, Boeing, Siemens and BAE Systems.

TRAM 2015 website

Images: Boeing

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