£9.75m UTC plan gets underway

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STUDENTS are under starter orders after the green light was given for the procurement process for the £9.75 million Silverstone University Technical College.

Last year the Government gave its go ahead for for 13 UTCs throughout England and in October applications for UTCs in Daventry and Silverstone were approved.

Last week Northants County Council cabinet member Andrew Grant (Cons, Towcester) was given the authority to negotiate a 125 year lease with the circuit at a peppercorn rent.

A university has always been included in the Silverstone Masterplan and is part of the on going redevelopment of the circuit which has already seen the construction and opening of a new pit and paddock suite.

Mr Grant said: “We’ve started the process now, therefore the whole thing is gearing up to start the process to get tenders and bids and work will commence so that it can be open by September 2013. It’s not too big a site but certainly it will be a prestigious building on the circuit. I think it will be fantastic for all the young people who will have the opportunity to pursue technical skills. But it will also be a great place to work being at the forefront of technology on a world famous motor racing circuit.”

While the Daventry UTC will specialise in emerging green technologies the Silverstone UTC will specialise in high performance engineering and events management and could cater for up to 800 students.

South Northants Council’s Dermot Bambridge said the UTC would create jobs and hopes it could lead to improvements to public transport.