Norton have partnered with Engineering Technology Group (ETG) to open the Norton Tehcnical Academy, with the aim of training the next generation of engineers.
The facility is the first of 15 to be opened by ETG, who are putting £6million into the project, and is 250 square metres wide, situated at Castle Donington, and has been opened with the aim to train 300 young engineers over the next two years.
Featuring a range of Bridgeport Hardinge, Quaser, Chiron and Nakamura CNC machines, the centre will also enable Norton to trial the manufacture of new parts for their British-built bikes.
ETG Managing Director Martin Doyle said, "These centres will be further reinforced by equipment and software from technical partners keen to help bridge the gap, creating what will – in essence – be advanced manufacturing cells capable of training young people, existing workers and supporting SMEs with production issues.”
The Norton academy, will provide companies with the opportunity to train their staff on these CNC machines, with some providing a full apprenticeship curriculum. In the first year they will train 40 apprentices and Norton employees, alongside a further 60 students from ETG.
Norton CEO and owner Stuart Garner said, "We are very proud of our British heritage and the reputation UK manufacturing carries across the world. However, in order for us to remain competitive we have to take it into our own hands and do something about bridging the skills gap.
"Working in partnership with ETG, we are proud to launch the first technical academy at our facility in Leicestershire and look forward to using it to improve the skills of our workforce and to support the wider supply chain in embracing advanced manufacturing.”
Mr Doyle added, “There is a real need for industry to get to grips with developing the skills of the next generation of engineers and those already working in the sector.
"Put bluntly, the current education platform is broken and not relevant to the world we operate in. Instead of bemoaning our luck and lack of support, we’ve decided to do something about it with the launch of our national network.”
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