17th Oct 2017

Vital grant: local economy

In 2015 The Platten Family Fund awarded £50,000 to the IGNITE Centre for Engineering and Innovation at TyneMet College to help create a redeveloped specialist Milling & Turning workshop.

The grant helped unlock a £1.5m funding package, including funding from the North East Local Enterprise Partnership and North Tyneside Council, for the IGNITE Centre. It directly supported the purchase of new lathes and milling machines that allowed for effective delivery of milling skills training for the first time. This enabled young people to gain core skills and NVQ qualifications required by the manufacturing sector in North Tyneside where many companies supply specialist equipment for the offshore oil and gas industry.

The grant reflected Tony Platten’s commitment to using his philanthropy to enable young people to share his passion for engineering and be part of its future in the region:

“As far back as I remember I have had a screwdriver in my hand and I knew exactly what I wanted to do with my career”, says Tony. “I am disappointed that many students do not know what they want to do with themselves or their careers. Local firms are losing out to industries in other parts of the UK and have not got the apprenticeship schemes in place to recruit more engineers with an enthusiasm for engineering. The dedication of TyneMet College and its staff is an asset to the local community. I am impressed with plans for the centre and proud to be a founding donor to its cause.”

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