New future for the Flybe Training Academy at Exeter Airport

(L-R) John Laramy, David Allen OBE, Rufus Gilbert, John Hart. Picture: GRW Photography

(L-R) John Laramy, David Allen OBE, Rufus Gilbert, John Hart. Picture: GRW Photography - Credit: GRW Photography

The future of the former Flybe Training Academy has been secured this week.

The former Flybe Training Academy at Exeter Airport has been relaunched as a centre offering opportunities for young people and adult learners looking to upskill or retrain for a new career.

Devon County Council has invested almost £4million in the Future Skills Centre and agreed a lease with Exeter College which will provide the courses.

The college had previously been chosen as the academic partner of the Flybe Training Academy delivering a range of programmes from the building since 2007.

In addition, the college has secured a £1million grant from the Government’s Getting Building Fund to enhance, transform and equip the Future Skills Centre to be a nationally significant hub for training and education.

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Devon County Council’s Cabinet member for economy and skills, Rufus Gilbert, said: “High-tech skills for engineering and digital are vital to our economy.

“Engineering and its aligned professions account for some eight per cent of Devon’s workforce but provide around 20 percent of our output.

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“Around two percent of Devon’s engineers retire each year and there are key gaps in the engineering sector. Ensuring a steady supply of experienced engineering professionals is a key element of our long-term growth plans.”

Exeter College Principal and Chief Executive John Laramy said: “We’re delighted to be able to work with Devon County Council for the benefit of learners, our city and the wider region.

“The Future Skills Centre will be the home of our forward-facing programmes of study, designed to help learners at different stages of their lives get the skills they need to fulfil the jobs of the future.

“This collaboration reinforces our position as an innovative training and education provider, but more importantly ensures that the wider community has access to the very best opportunities.”

Council leader John Hart said: “Creating and retaining a highly skilled workforce will underpin the economic prosperity of Devon and will be a key part of our recovery plan after Covid-19.”

Courses are being taught now from the Future Skills Centre, with courses on offer to both school leavers and adult learners.

Applications are now open to join Exeter College in 2021.

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