The Worshipful the Mayor of Barnsley, Councillor Linda Burgess officially opens the Barnsley Construction Skills Village.

The Worshipful the Mayor of Barnsley, Councillor Linda Burgess, officially opened the new Construction Skills Village in Barnsley at a launch event on Monday 30 January.

The new Skills Village is a collaboration between Henry Boot Construction, Northern Regeneration, Barnsley College and Barnsley Council and is a result of Barnsley Council’s £100m investment in the Better Barnsley town centre redevelopment. The redevelopment is aimed at creating a brighter future where people achieve their potential and a better Barnsley with a thriving and vibrant economy that supports the creation of more and better jobs and good business growth, which are key priorities for the council.

“The Skills Village is a fantastic opportunity for students to gain the practical industry skills required for a successful career within construction. We are looking forward to working with our partners to help provide the next generation of skilled construction workers in Barnsley.”

The launch event began with a welcome by the Operations Director of Henry Boot Construction, Tony Shaw, and Managing Director at Northern Regeneration, Graham Ratcliffe. Both Tony and Graham explained in further detail why the Skills Village was created and how it will help close the skills gap within the construction industry by providing the people of Barnsley with the opportunity to gain practical construction related skills in order to make them ‘work ready’, whilst also supporting the construction skills required for the Better Barnsley town centre redevelopment.
The Worshipful the Mayor of Barnsley, Councillor Linda Burgess, then officially opened the Skills Village in a ribbon cutting ceremony which was followed by a tour of the site.
Guests had the opportunity to see Barnsley College students working on training areas around the site on activities such as brickwork, surveying and joinery. The Mayor spoke to the students to find out how the Skills Village is helping to equip them with the necessary skills required for a successful career within the construction industry.

The Skills Village also provided an opportunity for students from other departments at Barnsley College and University Campus Barnsley (UCB) to get involved. Alice Firth, HND Graphic Design student at UCB, won the hoarding design competition. Her creative design will now be displayed on the boarded fencing around the site.

Catering and Hospitality students provided refreshments for the event and Horticulture students have started to prepare an area of garden space inside the Skills Village which they will eventually landscape.

The Worshipful the Mayor of Barnsley, Councillor Linda Burgess said: “It was fantastic to be invited to the site and meet the young people of Barnsley who will be able to use the skills they learn here to achieve their potential. The students here have a great opportunity to gain a wide range of skills and it was great to see them all so eager to put them into practice.”

Ryan O’Loughlin, Project Director at Henry Boot Construction, said: “The Skills Village is a fantastic opportunity for industry and education to collaborate and contribute to reducing the construction skills shortage. Henry Boot Construction are committed to leaving an employment and skills legacy in Barnsley. The Skills Village, underpinned by the Better Barnsley redevelopment, provides the perfect platform to achieve our objectives.”

Graham Ratcliffe, Managing Director at Northern Regeneration, said: “Thank you to The Worshipful the Mayor of Barnsley for officially opening the Skills Village. The partnership is now looking forward to working with local construction enthusiasts to develop their skills and knowledge by learning on a real-life site environment.”

Barnsley College Principal Christopher Webb added: “The Skills Village is a fantastic opportunity for students to gain the practical industry skills required for a successful career within construction. We are looking forward to working with our partners to help provide the next generation of skilled construction workers in Barnsley.”

For further information about the Skills Village call 07506 745808 or email melissa@northernregeneration.co.uk

Last updated: 2nd Feb 2017

Originally posted on: 2nd Feb 2017