£33m investment in Leeds City College approved by West Yorkshire Combined Authority

£33m investment in Leeds City College approved by West Yorkshire Combined Authority

Following the West Yorkshire Combined Authority’s approval last week of £33m investment in new life science and digital facilities for Leeds City College, a total of £79m has now been committed towards new FE college infrastructure in the region.

On top of the latest approval, 10 college projects have already secured investment and are now underway. These 10 projects combined are expected to make a £600m impact on the regional economy through an 18% increase in the number of college students by 2021 and the creation of 3,000 apprenticeships.

The £79m investment was secured through an overall £1bn Leeds City Region Growth Deal agreed with Government in 2014. As well as creating college facilities, the investment aims to ensure that growing industry sectors in the region have access to a pipeline of high quality skills and that young people can develop the skills to match future demand.

The Leeds City College Quarry Hill project has received its £33m grant approval to build an ambitious new healthcare and life science training centre that will equip young people in the region to enter this growing industry.

Following the green light from the Combined Authority, construction of the new facility is expected to get underway in January 2017.

Colin Booth, CEO and Principal at Leeds City College, said: "We’re thrilled to have received the go-ahead for this exciting development.

"The Quarry Hill Campus will highlight our commitment to providing exceptional learning spaces and will aim to enhance and complement this growing cultural quarter."

The Kirklees Process Manufacturing Centre (PMC) in Huddersfield is another pioneering scheme that has recently been realised through £3.1m of Growth Deal funding. The Centre, which opened its doors to students earlier this autumn, provides specialist training for apprentices on cutting-edge equipment used in industry with the aim of fast-tracking their careers in the chemical, pharmaceutical and manufacturing sectors.

Cllr Susan Hinchcliffe, Leader of Bradford Council and Skills Lead for the LEP said: "We have an ambition to exceed the national average on higher level skills and to do this, we need to support our education institutions to provide the best quality learning environments for young people to be inspired and to learn.

"These investments in new college facilities, alongside our other skills priorities of increasing apprenticeships, creating more and better jobs, and supporting skills development in the region’s key growth sectors will go a long way towards ensuring that all young people in our City Region have access to a good job with progression opportunities, and that businesses have access to the right mix of skills to grow, innovate and succeed."


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