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NETA Training has unveiled plans for the development of its £14m purpose-built centre in Thornaby.

A flagship project of the Thornaby Town Deal, the new campus will further enhance the delivery of quality engineering and construction training, within the borough, for young people and adults.

“After many months in the pipeline we are excited to be bringing the brand-new NETA Training site to Thornaby,” said the Education Training Collective’s chief operating officer Phil Hastie.

“NETA has a long history of meeting the skills needs of employers in our region and beyond, this development will now bring together NETA’s industrial heritage with fantastic new facilities.”

Made possible with £4.5m from the Government’s Town Deal fund, and delivered in partnership with Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council and with the support of the Thornaby Town Deal Board, the new building will be situated on the Stockton Riverside College site, with work expected to start late in the summer.  

Further funding has been secured from the Department for Education and investment from the Education Training Collective (Etc.).

Maintaining its strong identity and brand, NETA Training will have its own access point off Princeton Drive and continue to deliver its full range of training services, including commercial courses, testing and certification, apprenticeship training and full-time engineering programmes for school-leavers. 

The 5,000 square metre facility will comprise bespoke industry workshops for the delivery of engineering skills, including welding, electrical, mechanical, pipefitting and rigging and lifting.

Investment will see some of the latest high spec industry-standard equipment sitting alongside traditional heavy-duty machinery, maintaining NETA’s unique character and appeal.

Phil said: “A new building for NETA has been on our wish list for a number of years, it is incredible, thanks to the Thornaby Town Deal, to finally be able to make this happen.”

Working with employers, the local and combined authorities, this is the latest in a series of improvement projects delivered by the Etc., a group of Teesside colleges and training providers which includes NETA Training and Stockton Riverside College, to increase opportunities and create better facilities in which to learn.

Development of the new building in Thornaby will run alongside the creation of the NETA-led All Access Academy at Redcar and Cleveland College, announced in March, delivering training in the likes of scaffolding, rope access and rigging and lifting.

NETA director Sean Johnston said: “These are exciting times for NETA, our staff, learners, delegates and all the employers that we work with.  We can’t wait to see both our new centre in Thornaby and the All Access Academy in Redcar up and running.

“Engineering and construction skills have a massive part to play in Teesside’s industrial future.  We want to help create a workforce on our doorstep with the knowledge, talent and abilities to ensure our communities benefit from that.”

The relocation of NETA is one of the priority interventions that are set to bring long-term change and investment into Thornaby as part of its town deal.  The interventions were identified by the Thornaby Town Deal Board, a group of local stakeholders who support the town investment plan, made up of key public and private sector bodies.

Mark White CBE DL, chair of Thornaby Town Deal Board and chair of Stockton-on-Tees Strategic Education Board, said: “The opportunity for NETA’s relocation highlights how our Town Investment Plan will unlock fantastic opportunities for Thornaby-on-Tees.  It allows communities to prosper, employers to find staff that will help their businesses and the local economy to grow and flourish.

“Bringing a campus of such scale and significance to Stockton Riverside College is testament to the quality of ambition for the interventions and the hard work of the Town Deal Board.

“This is a very important step in making our ambitions for the Thornaby Town Deal a reality.”

Iain Robinson, assistant director for town centres development at Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council, said: “The Thornaby Town Deal is part of the council’s exciting regeneration programme that will help the borough to be recognised for its thriving economy at the heart of the Tees Valley and as a place where everyone has the opportunity to succeed.

“The plans for a new NETA Training facility, as well as our ambition to create the nationally significant Tees Valley Care and Health Innovation Zone, will help to breathe new life into Teesdale Business Park and bring a host of wider benefits for the borough.”

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