A NEW multi-million-pound educational centre to train engineers of the future has been unveiled at a Hampshire college.

Fareham College has revealed plans to open a new £4.1million campus at Daedalus airfield in Fareham to train hundreds of civil engineers through apprenticeships, leadership and management qualifications and training programmes, a selection of short courses and traineeships with industry partners targeted at 16-18 school or college leavers, adult career changers and unemployed adults.

The campus, which will be known as the Civil Engineering Training Centre (CETC) will be located near the college’s existing Centre of Excellence in Engineering, Manufacturing and Advanced Skills Training (CEMAST) which opened on the airfield in 2014.

Nigel Duncan, principal and chief executive of Fareham College, said: “Based on economic demand, this project is to establish a purpose-built Civil Engineering Training Centre (CETC) that will meet the increasing and long-term needs of a sector of the industry that has been largely forgotten in the national training landscape.

“Initiated and driven by a group of large, highly regarded and regionally active civil engineering companies based in the Solent, the centre will fill a gap in the construction training landscape that is in great demand and based on an immediate and long-term economic need.”

Mr Duncan added that with £15.4bn of planned development in Hampshire over the next five years, the centre will deliver the range of critical skills that underpin all sectors of the construction industry and that by 2020, CETC will be the centre of excellence for skill-based occupations in civil engineering for the Solent and south Hampshire areas.

Civic and business chiefs have also welcomed the plans.

Councillor Sean Woodward, leader of Fareham Borough Council said: “I support their proposal, it’s an important expansion and I am delighted that they are taking up their option with Fareham Borough Council to expand CEMAST at Daedalus.”

Ross McNally, executive chair at Hampshire Chamber of Commerce, said: “The Fareham College proposal addresses a key skills shortage which is felt across the region. This development could make an important contribution to developing these skills and contributing to job opportunities of lasting value.”

The new campus, which is being funded by the college and the Solent LEP who are contributing £2.8 million will be completed in August 2019 ready for the 2019/20 academic year if the plans are approved by Fareham Borough Council later this year.