From education to employment

Department for Education get first look at the Blackburn College’s new HEAT facility

Representatives from the Department for Education have been given the first look at Blackburn College’s new Hybrid Electric Automotive Training (HEAT) facility.

HEAT is part of the £1.3m Lancashire Automotive Skills Accelerator Project, which will bridge the skills gap in low-carbon vehicle mechanics. The facility will focus on Electric and Hybrid vehicle maintenance, service and repair.

The College is leading the Lancashire Automotive Skills Accelerator Project funded by the Department for Education, as part of The Skills Accelerator Strategic Development Fund.

The centre, located in the College’s Regional Automotive Technology Hub (RATH), will support the Government’s commitment to withdrawing the sale of new petrol or diesel cars in 2030 as part of the UK’s net-zero targets.

The event saw representatives from the Department for Education take a first look at the new facilities along with representatives from a number of the College’s partner garages including Bowker BMW, Chorley Nissan, West Riding Hyundai and Alan Price Automobile Services.

HEAT will be officially opened later this year, with a range of hybrid and electric vehicle courses being offered.

A Department for Education Spokesperson said: “Colleagues from the department were delighted to see, first-hand, how the Strategic Development Fund is enabling Blackburn college to meet local skill priorities, reduce carbon emissions and help boost the economy.

“Managed by the Department for Education, the fund is giving colleges access to cutting-edge equipment, such as Blackburn’s world-class automotive facilities which will help deliver the skills needed to allow even more automotive business to service hybrid and electric vehicles.”

Blackburn College Principal and Chief Executive Dr Fazal Dad said: “It was a pleasure to welcome representatives from the Department for Education to visit our new HEAT facility. HEAT will be a vital tool in helping to bridge the skills gap in low carbon vehicle mechanics in Lancashire.

“Working alongside businesses we will be able to provide our students with access to cutting-edge hybrid and electric vehicle technology and skills development that will help meet the needs of their future employers.”

Alan Price, owner of Alan Price owner of Alan Price Automobile Services in Blackburn said: “The new HEAT facility is a superb addition to Blackburn College. The facility is state-of-the-art and will provide a huge benefit to students who will have access to the latest technology to ensure their skills are up to date.”

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