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Prime Minister Visits North Halifax Skills Centre

10th October 2013 <b>Prime</b> Minister Visits North Halifax Skills Centre

Today, the Prime Minister visited the North Halifax Skills Centre (NHSC) - part of Calderdale College to congratulate the teaching and ‘hands-on’ learning that takes place at the Centre, which contributes to meeting the anticipated growth in construction.

Chris Jones, Principal at Calderdale College was pleased to have the opportunity to share with the Prime Minister the valuable work undertaken by the Centre in equipping local people with skills to enable them to work in the construction industry: "I am pleased that the work of staff and students at North Halifax Skills Centre has been recognised and that the Prime Minister was able to hear first-hand from our students that the training provided is supporting them to address their ambitions.

“Since the beginning of 2012 we have had over 1,500 students on construction courses at the College and over 100 construction apprentices in small and medium sized enterprises in and around Calderdale - I hope to see the number continue to grow in the coming months.”

Over the last year, the North Halifax Skills Centre has trained over 280 students aged 14-19+, enabling them to obtain an in-depth knowledge and gain quality training in a variety of trades from Brickwork to Joinery and Plastering to Painting & Decorating in North Halifax Centre.

During his visit to the Centre, which was his first trip to the region since last June after the floods hit Calderdale; David Cameron also commended the importance of construction centres such as North Halifax and said: “It’s great to be in a college like this training young people.”

According to the UK Contractors Group, the construction industry is fundamental to the growth and development of the Yorkshire and Humberside economy with 92p in every £1 spent on construction retained in the region, creating 6% of regional jobs. The region’s construction industry has promise for further growth with the value of new contracts awarded in the region – at £1.2bn in first quarter of 2013 – one of the highest outside London.

Over the last two years, the College has invested 15 million pounds into its state-of-the-art facilities and resources and on Monday 14th October, Calderdale College will be officially opening their £6 million state-of-the-art Technology Centre which will aid Calderdale in reaching its current low carbon 2020 targets. The Centre provides specialist learning resources for low-carbon technologies, such as photovoltaics, solar thermal, wind, biofuels, heat pumps and water recycling, as well as the College’s existing curriculum provision of plumbing, electrical installation and electro-technical technology.

The Leeds City Region report and the Office of National Statistics Business Register & Employment Survey (BRES), specifies that approximately 62,600 people work within the construction industry in the Yorkshire and Humberside area. As such, there is a now a greater need for jobs within the construction industry to adapt and incorporate new ‘green’ sustainable technologies. According to a recent report by Leeds City Region of the existing jobs in construction, 20,000 will be low carbon jobs by 2020.

#Photograph by Sarah Mason Photography

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