Thursday, July 5, 2012

News: AMI Training Centre gains planning approval


The University of Sheffield's plans for a world-class £20.5m advanced manufacturing training centre in Rotherham have been approved.

The 5,566 sq m AMI Training Centre will form part of a complex of state-of-the-art facilities at The University of Sheffield's Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) with Boeing on the Advanced Manufacturing Par (AMP).

It will be a key part of the university's Advanced Manufacturing Institute (AMI), created last year in response to the continued success around the AMRC in Rotherham.

The AMI Training Centre will provide training in the practical and academic skills that manufacturing companies need to compete globally, from apprenticeship through to Doctorate and MBA level. It's focus will be on 250 young people training as apprentices each year and it could have up to as many as 400 students.

The centre will focus on high-level apprentice training, concentrating on sectors such as aerospace, energy and Formula One. It will also host part time CPD courses with the training schedule guided by the AMI's industrial partners and participating companies.

Professor Keith Ridgway, research director and founder of the AMRC, said: "The AMI Training Centre is essential to our vision of bringing together research and world-class engineering of the kind carried out at The University of Sheffield with real business challenges and issues in manufacture."

The development will be located on a site owned by Harworth Estates, the property arm of UK COAL and sitting within the Sheffield City Region Enterprise Zone. Duncan Armstrong-Payne, development manager at Harworth Estates, said: "This is the green light for a key new development on the AMP site. The AMI Training Centre will provide world class facilities which will complement the work already being carried out at the AMP, where Rolls-Royce recently announced it will build its new turbine blades facility."

Simon Spode, marketing manager at the AMP, added: "The need for a suitably skilled workforce is one of the toughest challenges to overcome before the UK advanced manufacturing industry can reach its full potential. Initiatives like the AMI Training Centre and other apprentice programmes in the city region are key to meeting these challenges."

The Department for Business Innovation and Skills has awarded £9.2m from the Regional Growth Fund to establish the centre with the remainder coming from participating companies and other funding streams.

The target date for opening is September 2013. It is set to employ around 40 members of staff, taking the total number employed by the University on the AMP to 220.

Advanced Manufacturing Institute website

Images: University of Sheffield / Bond Bryan


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