Shropshire’s construction sector is set to have the right skills for the job now and in the future, thanks to the work of an ‘outstanding’ rated Ofsted college in the region which one local business leader has the chance to visit behind-the-scenes recently.

As the result of a partnership between Dudley College of Technology and the Construction and Design Centre of Excellence (Cadcoe) training provider, Paul Hinkins, Chair of Telford Business Board, was invited to a tour of the industry-leading training facility to learn about some of its plans to develop the sector, and position the region for continued growth during 2018.

Cadcoe is a training provider which offers advanced apprenticeships in digital design and engineering construction, with students able to develop comprehensive skills in 2D computer aided design (CAD) and 3D modelling during a fast-track programme, as well as gain in-depth understanding of a range of disciplines within the engineering and construction sector.

Paul was welcomed to the college by its Principal, Neil Thomas, as well as Daniel Leech, Managing Director of Cadcoe. The two formed a partnership in early 2017 as part of the college’s large investment in Advance II, a state-of-the-art £12million building for advanced construction technologies.

Daniel Leech explained: “We were delighted to welcome Paul Hinkins and provide him with the opportunity to learn more about the industry-leading apprenticeships we provide at Cadcoe, as well as show him around the Advance II training site within Dudley College of Technology, which provides the perfect environment for our students to thrive.

“Together with Dudley College, we’re building a model of best practice and innovation which is helping to not only remove the stigma around apprenticeships, but which addresses the shortage of skills the construction sector is facing. We’re passionate about encouraging the next generation of tech-savvy thinkers and doers, who will play a huge role in the progression of construction and engineering technologies across the whole of the UK in the months and years to come.”

Paul added: “Thanks to both Neil and Daniel for welcoming me to the Advance II to learn about some of the hugely exciting work that they’re doing. We’re very fortunate to have such industry-first facilities like this here in the region, which is dedicated to spearheading change across both the UK’s construction sector, as well as placing a spotlight on the important role apprentices play in the development of organisations of all types.”

Telford Business Board (TBB) is made up of a dynamic collection of outstanding business leaders and sector champions which represent a wide variety of industries. An organisation committed to driving positive change, TBB helps to bring together the public and private sectors, and act as a bridge between the diverse and vibrant sectors which make up the Telford business community. For more information, please visit