Blueprint for the future

Gareth Jones, Managing Director of In-Comm Training, looks forward to the opening of the MCMT.

Friday is a massive day in the future of skills provision in the UK. When the £4m Marches Centre of Manufacturing & Technology (MCMT) officially opens its doors it marks what could be a potential blueprint for the rest of industry to follow.

Don’t get me wrong; whilst the impressive 36,000 sq ft training hub is not enough on its own to make national waves, the fact it has been developed by an employer-led consortium – supported by Government funding – definitely is.

The three manufacturers are Classic Motor Cars, Grainger & Worrall and Salop Design & Engineering, working with ourselves at In-Comm Training to deliver bespoke trailblazer apprenticeships and a host of specialist upskilling courses.

We’ve decided to seize the moment and not wait for a traditional solution or for the public sector to give us what they think works. Instead, we’ve proactively scoped out the vision and, slowly but surely, transformed an old storage unit into a high-tech venue that will support ‘2020 learners by 2020’.

Industry has been quick to get behind the MCMT too. A significant proportion of the £2m state-of-the-art equipment has been supplied via sponsorship agreements with the likes of ABB Robotics, Engineering Technology Group, FBC Manby Bowdler, Filtermist, Halter, Hexagon Metrology, Mastercam, Mechatronics and Zwick Roell Group.

This means our apprentices and learners will have access to a CNC Zone crammed full of 3-axis and 5-axis machines, not to mention dedicated fabrication, foundry, lathe, metrology, milling, robotics and vehicle trimming sections.


On Friday, 250 people will get their first view of the Marches Centre of Manufacturing & Technology. It will, I have no doubt, create excitement, passion and a desire to get involved. This is the future of skills provision and this is just the start.