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New Logistics Academy unveiled

by Laura Johnston

The Northern Logistics Academy which provides qualifications and training in the logistics industry, has recently been launched to help close a growing skills gap and develop tomorrow’s workforce.

The academy was approved last year by Liverpool’s City Region growth deal fund.

Asif Hamid, Interim Chair of the Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “The Growth Deal funding secured will help unlock the region’s potential as an economic powerhouse and this investment in this new Northern Logistics Academy will help our young people acquire the right skills for the future.”

The academy has sites in Kirkby and St Helens with the recent VIP launch being held in Kirkby. St Helens College and Knowsley Community College were joined by more than 100 VIP guests including councillors, local MPs and employers from sectors across the global logistics industry.

On the day of the opening, visitors were taken on an interactive tour of the site. The tour included logistics software demonstrations, an interactive simulation of a manufacturing process, and equipment and HGV truck displays.

What will the Academy teach?

The academy offers a realistic working environment where students can learn about product movement from the initial receipt of goods all the way through to dispatching. Students have the opportunity to undergo forklift training and learn skills using the IT rich data processing centres with software suites and transport simulators.

The Northern Logistics Academy was designed and developed with key employers to meet the future skills needs of the sector. Key employers such as Asda, First Ark Group and Matalan have given their support, and industry and membership bodies including the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport are in connection with the academy.

George Howarth MP officially opened the facility and said: “This new development is a very important step forward in training local people for an employment growth area – logistics. I hope this will prove the first of many such training opportunities.”

Anne Pryer, Principal of Knowsley Community College and Jette Burford, St Helens College Principal said that the academy’s aim is to “provide a pipeline of professionals to the sector of the next 20-30 years.” They believe that “the Northern Logistics Academy will be truly transformational in creating an employer centred approach to skills development for logistics.”