Marshall has announced it will open a second UK-based Skills Academy in Cranfield, Bedfordshire, from September 2024 with an initial intake of 200 young people.

Located adjacent to Cranfield University’s campus, in a prime location at the heart of the UK’s eastern aerospace and defence cluster, the new site will make Marshall Skills Academy’s industry-leading apprenticeship programmes available to businesses across the aviation and engineering sectors.

In addition to its traditional apprenticeships offering, Marshall is also proposing that the new facility be home to one of the UK’s first University Technical College (UTC) ‘Sleeves’, a technical educational pathway which offers first-hand experience of engineering skills, delivered within an aerospace workshop, to secondary school pupils interested in careers in aviation or engineering from the age of 14 upwards. These proposals will form the basis of consultation with local schools in the area.

Marshall CEO Kathy Jenkins explained, “As the training arm of a business that has prepared well over 20,000 young people for technical careers over more than a century, Marshall Skills Academy is uniquely positioned to understand and respond to the problems facing the sector, but we certainly would not be taking this step without the support and collaboration of the wider industry.”

Supporting the Skills Academy

As a neighbour, Cranfield University will play a supporting role in the development of the new Skills Academy through its significant expertise and access to a wider network of local educational organisations.

Professor Karen Holford, CBE FREng, Chief Executive and Vice-Chancellor of Cranfield University, welcomed the announcement, saying: “We are proud that Marshall Aerospace has chosen Cranfield as the location for this vital new training facility, which is set to boost skills critical to the sector’s future.

“The relocation of Marshall Aerospace’s UK headquarters to Cranfield also provides an exciting and unrivalled opportunity for collaboration and skills development. As the UK’s only specialist postgraduate university and with a proud history in aviation innovation, we are looking forward to sharing our deep expertise in aerospace with learners at every level.”

Subscribe to the FINN weekly newsletter