London and East of England Academy spoke launched at new Hethel Engineering Centre

02 May 2006 #SMMT News

There was good news today (Friday 26 April) for the automotive industry in the East of England as the Automotive Academy launched its new regional spoke at the Hethel Engineering Centre, and announced its first partnership in the region with Group Lotus.

The new spoke will be looking to upskill the supply chain in order to retain the key players in the automotive industry, key players such as local company Lotus.

John Bradley, spoke manager for the London and East region commented ‘Now the region has a world class upskilling resource in the Hethel Engineering Centre to match the world class manufacturing companies, like Lotus and Caterpillar (Perkins) within the area. The Academy is dedicated to ensuring that the UK automotive industry has access to globally competitive training. It is our job to make sure this happens with the thousand or so companies who represent the industry within the London and East of England area and we are very happy to be starting this process with Lotus.’

John Vigar, Manager: CIP & Business Coordination Manufacturing Lotus said ‘Lotus’ strategy to continue its quest to deliver world-class performance is now involving a partnership with the Automotive Academy.

The partnership will focus on manufacturing abilities through the continuous application of best practice and will encompass the whole of Lotus manufacturing creating an applied centre of manufacturing excellence.’

The Automotive Academy, led by the UK’s leading automotive companies, promotes globally competitive standards of training and skill development throughout the UK’s automotive industry. It supports the whole supply chain, not just vehicle manufacturers, to encourage universal best practice set against the Academy’s stringent validation process. The new spoke will provide a vital local presence based out of the Hethel Centre also launched today.

Bill Williams, chief executive at Hethel said, ‘We are delighted to be working closely with John and the Automotive Academy. Both organisations are looking to target high performance engineering and manufacturing companies and so the AA is a logical additional piece of the jigsaw. We will be working together in Norfolk and the surrounding counties with specialist providers to ensure the delivery of world class training for the industry.’

For further information on the training and skill provisions offered by the new spoke at Hethel please visit or telephone / e-mail John Bradley on, 0208 596 5149

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