Bassetlaw District Council has been awarded £3.5m from D2N2’s Getting Building Fund (GBF) allocation to refurbish a long-term vacant building in Worksop into a state-of-the-art skills and education hub, creating 50 jobs and supporting 300 learners.
The Worksop Access to Skills Hub will offer opportunities across a range of subjects including health and social care; digital and digital transformation; green technologies and low carbon and construction.
The project will be delivered in partnership with the RNN Group (of Colleges) and the University of Derby, who will provide skills and training along with access to University-level education and for communities and businesses.
Planning permission has been granted for the site and the GBF investment will allow works to start on the renovation, with an expected completion date of March 2022.
The Worksop project is one of ten across Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham, and Nottinghamshire which has received funding from D2N2’s £44 million share of the government’s £900 million Getting Building Fund.
The programme of investment is being used to improve digital infrastructure; support skills and career opportunities; and the transition to a low carbon economy, to drive economic growth following the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
D2N2 Chair Elizabeth Fagan said: “I’m delighted to see D2N2 support this scheme and bring a state-of-the-art skills and education hub to Worksop town centre.
“Through the Getting Building Fund, we are investing to transform the skills opportunities within Worksop and meet new and emerging needs within the local economy.”
Councillor Jo White, Cabinet Member for Regeneration at Bassetlaw District Council, said: “When the Council purchased Bridge Court, we saw the potential to transform a neglected building into a place where future generations of local people can give themselves the opportunity to create a more promising future.
“Thanks to D2N2, along with our partners RNN Group and Derby University, who share this vision, the funding announced today will help to address the skills shortages that have already been identified in our area, enhance the further education provision already on offer in Bassetlaw and create a positive impact on life outcomes for future generations.
“In the coming years, people who want to gain skills in areas such as the health, digital and green technology sectors will be able to learn and train close to their homes and our brightest talent may not be lost to neighbouring areas.
“We also firmly believe that a Skills Hub will benefit the town centre and as well as directly creating jobs, it will help to secure jobs in the hospitality and retail sectors and directly support the growth of our high street – something that will be desperately needed following the Coronavirus Pandemic.
“On behalf of Bassetlaw, I’d like to thank D2N2 for their support, and our partners who will help to make this vision a reality.”