A new £1.2 million advanced manufacturing and engineering facility has opened in Lancashireâs industrial heartland.
Around 120 people attended the launch event for the Advanced Manufacturing & Automation Centre (AMAC) at Training 2000, a training provider base in Blackburnâs Furthergate Business Park.
Chairman of the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership, Edwin Booth, and Chief Executive of the North West Aerospace Alliance, David Bailey, were guests of honour on hand to open the facility.
Over the next two years, the training centre will allow over 250 local people to study for Higher Engineering Apprenticeships and participate in upskilling programmes, with opportunities to continue studying at degree level available for successful apprentices.
AMAC features advanced equipment and a team of trainers plucked directly from industry and was built with £800,000 from the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership as part of a £30 million investment scheme to upskill thousands and boost key areas of the economy in Lancashire.
Steve Gray, CEO of training provider Training 2000, said that the AMAC provides a unique environment in the heart of Lancashire which build on the countryâs rich heritage within manufacturing and engineering.
Gray added: By upskilling both the current and next generation of engineers and manufacturers on cutting-edge equipment, weâre helping companies develop the employees they need to drive productivity and growth.
Graham Cowley, Chair of the LEPâs Growth Deal Management Board, commented: Improving the skills of Lancashireâs workforce in key sectors of the economy is an important part of the LEPâs ambitious strategic programme to transform the county and drive economic growth over the next decade.
The LEP is funding a network of new, modern training facilities all across Lancashire which will improve the employability of thousands of local people over the coming years.
Cowley added that the company has committed to supporting 15 new training facilities via Growth Deal Skills Capital funding, of which the AMAC in Blackburn is the second to be completed.