Pembrokeshire College, Merlins Bridge, Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire, SA61 1SZ


First Minister Officially Opens The Welding and Fabrication Centre of Excellence

First Minister Mark Drakeford with Pembrokeshire College Principal Barry, Nick Revell, Iwan Thomas and Engineering learner Rhiannon stood beside the Welding and Fabrication Centre of Excellence Plaque

Pembrokeshire College were delighted to welcome the First Minister of Wales Mark Drakeford to officially open the Welding and Fabrication Centre of Excellence.

Upon arrival, First Minister Mark Drakeford was greeted by College Principal Dr Barry Walters, Assistant Principal Jackie Mathias and Chair of the Corporation Board Iwan Thomas for a tour through the College reflecting on Engineering students achievements within the College and externally in WorldSkills UK competitions.

The Welding and Fabrication Centre of Excellence was filled with local employers from the engineering industry to witness First Minister Mark Drakeford open the Welding and Fabrication Centre of Excellence where the prospective workforce is developing pivotal skills.

Head of Engineering, Arwyn Williams opened the event with a welcoming speech, followed by Advanced Level 3 Mechanical Engineering learner Rhiannon Clapham and Nick Revell the Managing Director of Ledwood Engineering before the First Minister officially opened the centre with a speech before unveiling the Welding and Fabrication Centre of Excellence plaque.

College Principal, Dr Barry Walters commented:

“I am delighted and grateful to the First Minister for finding the time to attend and formally open the Centre.

“As ever, the building of this facility would not have been possible without the support and input of so many and I want to publicly thank those who have had such an input. First of all, Welsh Government for their Sustainable Communities for Learning Programme which has funded 65% of the £3.4m cost of this new build and WB Griffiths for the building of this facility.

“I must also highlight the fantastic contributions made by Andrew Nixon (Powell Dobson Architects), Adam Penny (Quantum CLS), Dylan Gravell (CB3 Consult) and Electrical and Mechanical Consultants, Richard and Paul Bullock and Neal O’Leary and his team from Welsh Government for their guidance and funding support through the Sustainable Communities for Learning Programme.

“I also want to recognise the contribution provided by the College’s Corporation Board and the work done by Steve Jones and Alex Hesse from Estates and the Engineering Faculty Management Team.”

First Minister of Wales Mark Drakeford and all guests were invited to look inside the Welding and Fabrication workshops within the centre to gain a deeper insight into where College learners and future engineers are developing their skills to meet industry needs and help support the local economy.

Level 3 Advanced Mechanical Engineering learner, Rhiannon Clapham added:

“The new Welding Centre will help many students learn valuable skills that will be applied in the workplace. These skills include learning the different kinds of welds in MIG, TIG and MMA welding, as well as grinding and more.”

With the emergence of the floating offshore wind energy industry in Milford Haven and green energy developments, the College are pleased to provide an industry-standard facility where aspiring engineers can be equipped for the professional careers that will become available locally.

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