Building the future has begun at Whitehill & Bordon’s Future Skills Centre (FSC) with the then Minister of State for Employment, East Hampshire MP Damian Hinds, opening the new facility.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, Hinds said, “I was delighted to be part of the official opening of the Future Skills Centre, and to meet students already at work in the new facility.”
The transformation of the whole Enterprise Zone is truly impressive, and the FSC is a key part of the vision to deliver first-class construction skills that can be used across the Whitehill and Bordon re-generation programme and elsewhere.
“It’s certainly an exciting time for the area.”
The innovative £4m building was built by Hampshire County Council and substantially funded by the Enterprise M3 Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP). The Basingstoke College of Technology will be operating the facility and using their extensive and expert knowledge, they will train the younger generations in crucial skills which will facilitate long-term growth for the wider economy of the area.
Comprehensive ranges of vocational training courses in the construction sector will be available, including apprenticeships and also technical training.
Anthony Bravo, principal of Basingstoke College of Technology, said, “We’re proud to be playing an important role in training and upskilling the next generation of site operatives and construction professionals. Our curriculum is specifically designed to directly target the current skills needs in the area and together with our investment of just under £200,000 on fitting out the centre and our outstanding industry and employer links, students will be exposed to the latest technologies, designs and developments in the industry.”
Due to the fact the Whitehill & Bordon regeneration is right in the centre of the UK’s tech corridor, students will have first-class access to some of the most groundbreaking and pioneering companies operating in and around the area, such as the gaming mecca that is Guildford.
Lionhead Studios / Gaming Developers
Hampshire County Council’s executive member for education Cllr Peter Edgar said, “The Future Skills Centre is the latest in a series of new, world-class technical training facilities we’re delivering across the county, which will transform the skills infrastructure in Hampshire.”
The investment pouring into the area is a sign of the business potential everyone was quick to identify. IBM have joined the team to enhance Whitehill & Bordon’s telecommunications to a level that could have the town’s connectivity sit beside any city. The ‘smart town’ that will be created will facilitate rapid expansion and growth for the businesses that choose Whitehill & Bordon.
Chairman of Enterprise M3 LEP Dr Mike Short commented on the various schemes setting the area up to thrive, “The Future Skills Centre will play a key role in… the redevelopment of Whitehill & Bordon. The Centre sits alongside other significant investments made by Enterprise M3, including the BASE Bordon Innovation Centre, the Inner Relief Road and the Sustainable Transport Package, bringing our total investment in the area to £28.7m.”
Schemes such as the FSC are another example of the hub being created for burgeoning talents to set up their businesses and also live in the green and open space we have here. Whitehill & Bordon is a town for the future; it will be a home to tech start-ups that can tap into the region’s already impressive tech and gaming portfolio, to ensure they unlock the maximum potential for their company.
Whitehill & Bordon