Published: November 18, 2019 | Updated: November 18, 2019

Weymouth College on the road to success after opening new motor vehicle technology centre

Ian Girling, Dorset LEP Board member and Chief Executive, Dorset Chamber of Commerce & Industry, and Matt Prosser, Chief Executive, Dorset Council, jointly cut the ribbon.
By Andrew Diprose, editor

A new Centre of Excellence for Motor Vehicle Technology has been officially opened at Weymouth College.

Ian Girling, Board member of Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and Chief Executive of Dorset Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and Matt Prosser, Chief Executive, Dorset Council, jointly performed the traditional ribbon-cutting.

The ceremony was also attended by college staff, motor vehicle lecturers and local businesses.

It was held just five months after Dorset LEP awarded £250,000 of the government’s Local Growth Fund to Weymouth College to establish the centre.

Mr Girling said: “This project has provided Weymouth College with fantastic facilities at the cutting edge of hybrid and electric vehicle engineering and manufacturing.

“There is already a thriving advanced engineering and manufacturing (AEM) sector in Dorset.

“These new facilities will give our next generation pioneering tools and teaching which will benefit our local economy and national vision for the future of transport.”

Lorna Carver, Director of Dorset LEP, added: “Dorset LEP are proud to launch a project which aligns with our proposed local industrial strategy.

“These facilities will unlock our local talent, support our AEM economy and train for a sustainable transport future in Dorset – and indeed the UK.”

The redevelopment has upgraded 500m2 of motor vehicle workshop facilities and will add hybrid and electric vehicles to the college’s motor vehicle fleet.

The facility upgrade has included the introduction of new ramps, tooling, shelving and work-desks.

There is now a dedicated hybrid section of the workshop where the college are planning to offer Hybrid Level 2 courses during the 2019/20 academic year once staff are trained.

Brian Oman, Head of Engineering Weymouth College, said: “The physical rebuild and refit of the motor vehicle workshop is now complete and ready for our students.

“This milestone – together with the continuing arrival of the enhanced motor fleet – has created a great air of anticipation among our current motor vehicle engineering students at all study levels.

“At our recent College Open Day we were able to outline our vision for the Centre of Excellence for Motor Vehicle Engineering to prospective new students who will be the first to fully benefit from this exciting new development.

“The reaction to the new course and training opportunities offered by the enhanced up-to-the minute facilities was – unsurprisingly – without exception 100 per cent positive.”

Mr Prosser said Dorset Council’s vision was for the county to be a great place to live, work and visit.

He added: “We live in a fabulous county and in order to keep that unique environment we need to look after it; one way we can do this is by reducing our carbon output.

“As the electric motor vehicle industry opens up, Weymouth College is equipping young people with the skills to be able to compete in future markets, adding value to Dorset’s economy.”