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Chief Secretary to the Treasury visits expanded Birmingham apprenticeship centre

EEF offers new courses to train apprentices as workers show off skills with 3D printed model of Gladstone, the Treasury cat

The Chief Secretary to the Treasury, David Gauke, visited the EEF apprentice training centre in Aston, Birmingham to help launch its new courses and see its expanded facilities.

With £11 million investment from EEF, the site will soon train over 400 apprentices a year in manufacturing and engineering. Apprentices and students will now be able to study on site for Higher National Diploma (HND) and Higher National Certificate (HNC) qualifications.

The centre offers the latest manufacturing technology training including robotics, computer-aided design and automated factory working on behalf of more than 90 organisations including Jaguar Land Rover and Severn Trent. A 3D model of Gladstone the Treasury cat was presented to the Chief Secretary, made by apprentice Tom Middleton on the centre’s 3D printer.

Chief Secretary to the Treasury, David Gauke, said:

“EEF’s investment in its Birmingham apprentices will equip workers with the cutting-edge skills needed to keep the UK’s manufacturing sector world-class.

“Apprentices are vital to improve productivity so that companies – and the economy – can grow and prosper. That is why we are creating 3 million new apprenticeships by 2020 and introducing the apprenticeship levy.

“The skills of the apprentices I’ve met today are outstanding. The 3D model of Gladstone is so good that the real-life version will think he has a new rival at the Treasury.”

Since 2010, more than 330,000 apprenticeships have been created in the West Midlands. The government’s UK-wide apprenticeship levy will be introduced in April 2017 for all employers with a pay bill of over £3 million to help fund increased and improved training.

The levy will double the annual level of spending on apprenticeships in England between 2010-11 and 2019-20 in cash terms to £2.5 billion.

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