Worcester MP Robin Walker has welcomed today’s announcement by Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Sajid Javid, that £4 million has been allocated to create a new Further Education Engineering Campus in Worcester city centre. The facility will be part of Heart of Worcestershire College, and courses are expected to begin in 2019/20.
The announcement comes as part of a £17.5 million funding allocation for Worcestershire from the New Local Growth Fund, published in the Government’s Midlands Engine Strategy Report.
It follows Robin’s call for increased capital funding for Further Education in Worcester – with a particular focus on Engineering and other STEM subjects – in a 2013 speech in Parliament. The first two rounds of growth fund allocation totalled £54.2 million, meaning Worcestershire’s support so far from the fund has reached a total of £71.7 million.
The Midlands Engine Strategy includes significant investment in skills, connectivity and local growth, and sets out how the government plans to drive the region’s huge potential and promote it to the world.
Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Sajid Javid, said:
“This Government is backing Worcestershire with this new £17.5 million funding pot. Exciting projects to benefit include a new engineering facility for Heart of Worcestershire College and improvements to the A38 to speed up journey times.
“This new funding will help create jobs, boost skills and give businesses support.”
Commenting on the announcement, Robin said:
“This is brilliant news for Worcester, I gave a speech in 2013 saying I wanted the Government to invest more in engineering and further education – now we will have the top-class training facilities that our young people need to succeed and prosper in the modern job market.”
“The biggest challenge from businesses is that they have got jobs but have not always been able to find enough people with the right skills locally – this funding will go a long way to closing the skills gap in the city.”
“Following on from the positive news for the local economy in yesterday’s Spring Budget, this is a much needed confidence boost for Worcester, and a further indication of this Government’s commitment to creating an economy that works for everyone.”
Notes to editors
For the full details of Robin’s 2013 speech calling for increased capital funding for Further Education in Worcester, please see: https://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201213/cmhansrd/cm130124/debtext/130124-0004.htm#13012438001806
To read the full Midlands Engine Strategy Report, please see: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/597770/Midlands_Engine_Strategy.pdf