Latest Rail News

07.01.15

Doncaster confirms location for its High Speed College

The location for the national High Speed Rail College’s centre in Doncaster has been confirmed. 

Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council has stated that the ‘ready to go’ five-acre site at Lakeside, on Carolina Way, will be the local authority’s contribution to the college. 

Ros Jones, mayor of Doncaster, said: “We fought hard to bring the National High Speed Rail College to Doncaster and it will be one of the most important investments in the borough for many years, providing fantastic opportunities for local people to secure highly skilled, well-paid engineering and manufacturing jobs.” 

More than 200 rail and engineering businesses are based in Doncaster and the Sheffield City Region with many world-leading firms like Volker Rail, Network Rail, DB Schenker, SPL Powerlines, Unipart Rail, Wabtec, Rhomberg Sersa and the new £70m Hitachi rail maintenance facility already based in and around Lakeside. 

In September 2014, the government announced that the High Speed Rail College would be based in Doncaster and Birmingham. The local authority is optimistic that the decision will place the South Yorkshire town at the heart of a ‘booming’ rail sector. 

Jones added: “We plan to develop a rail and engineering campus at Lakeside, which encourages further specialist training provision and links in with our schools and colleges so there are clear pathways for our young people into long lasting and rewarding careers. 

“This really is a game-changer for Doncaster.” 

A recent study by the National Skills Academy for Rail Engineering (NSARE) revealed that the industry needs approximately 1,000 apprentice engineers every year, but no more than 600 are currently being created. 

This skills gap is to be exacerbated by HS2, but it is hoped the High Speed Rail College will address the shortage by providing people with the training, skills and qualifications needed by rail businesses to thrive and win contracts worldwide. 

“The college will be the fulcrum for substantial growth in the rail and associated sectors, delivering far-reaching economic benefits for Doncaster, the Sheffield City Region, Yorkshire, the North-East and beyond,” concluded Jones. 

The college’s headquarters will be located in Birmingham’s city centre Aston Science Park. 

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