University of Lincoln to bring higher education to South Kesteven

A new University Technology and Innovation Centre serving South Kesteven will open in Grantham next summer thanks to a £2 million grant from the Greater Lincolnshire Local Enterprise Partnership.

The grant comes from the Government’s Growth Deal as the result of a joint bid from South Kesteven District Council and its regeneration company InvestSK. It will enable SKDC and the University of Lincolnranked 22nd in the country in the latest Guardian University Guide – to open the centre in 2019.

Tailored to meet local business needs, the centre will enable degrees and degree-level apprenticeships, diplomas and short courses to be delivered in Grantham by the University of Lincoln.

The University Centre will be located on the first floor of the new cinema complex on St Peter’s Hill in Grantham. It is just one part of the wider regeneration plans for Grantham, bringing more people into the town and strengthening its offer as a place for learning.

Initial courses will include the Chartered Management Degree Apprenticeship as well as short courses and masterclasses tailored to meet business needs.

Professional business services will also be offered to include start-up advice, growing your business and business networks, and events and talks will be hosted at the centre.

There will also be the opportunity to touch down and use a desk in the centre in the early stages of developing new business ideas.

Councillor Jacky Smith, Cabinet Member for Communities, Health, Wellbeing and Skills at South Kesteven District Council, said: “We are delighted with this award from the LEP’s Growth Fund.

“The centre will provide a place for the university, business and local people to come together, innovate and continue professional development, particularly through the opportunities that Higher Apprenticeships can bring for all to earn and learn at the same time.

“This is a major milestone towards delivering our plans to enable our businesses to develop, retain and attract talent across South Kesteven. Local companies across the area face recruitment difficulties in attracting higher level skilled staff. Having a facility like this will help to grow and attract more investment and we are keen to work with other partners to ensure our business environment remains innovative and competitive.

“We are particularly pleased to welcome to Grantham the University of Lincoln as a highly prestigious institution which has been awarded the Teaching Excellence Gold standard.”

Ursula Lidbetter MBE, Chair of the Greater Lincolnshire LEP, said: “The LEP is delighted to be supporting this transformative skills-driven project for Grantham.

“Responding to local employer requirements, the centre will provide a new model of university and sector collaboration, ensuring that there is a gateway to higher-level skills that cultivates a culture of enterprise and innovation.”

Professor Toby Wilkinson, Deputy Vice Chancellor at the University of Lincoln, said: “As a civic university, we’re focussed on supporting the skills and innovation which can drive economic growth across our region. We have a strong track record of responding to local needs, working with public and private sector partners.

“We’re pleased to be working with InvestSK and other organisations on this exciting proposal to develop new facilities for higher education provision in the centre of Grantham. The centre will draw on our expertise in science, engineering and business subjects, including through short courses and new degree apprenticeships, as well as providing new business incubation and networking spaces for employers.”

The Minister for Local Growth, Jake Berry MP, said: “We are committed to boosting economic growth across the whole of the Midlands Engine and building a country that works for everyone.

“Through this £2 million investment from the Local Growth Fund, residents and businesses in Grantham and its surrounding area will benefit from access to training and specialist support that will boost the local economy.”

Notes to Editors:

Greater Lincolnshire LEP

• The Greater Lincolnshire LEP was set up in 2010 and works with businesses and local authorities to develop and grow Greater Lincolnshire’s diverse economy.
• It is a public / private partnership led by the private sector.
• It works with central government and the private sector to invest in infrastructure, skills, innovation and productivity.
• More than 100 businesses are involved in its strategies, and 80 business people sit on its boards.
• The LEP has an ambitious and balanced strategic economic growth plan for Greater Lincolnshire.
• The LEP’s six priority sectors are agri-food, the visitor economy, manufacturing, logistics, health and care and low-carbon energy.
• The LEP has invested £307 million in local economic growth schemes in Greater Lincolnshire since 2014.
• The Greater Lincolnshire LEP covers an area including North Lincolnshire, North East Lincolnshire and the administrative county of Lincolnshire and is led by a LEP board made up of leading figures in the public and private sector.
• To find out more visitor follow the LEP on Twitter: @greaterlincslep.

South Kesteven District Council

• South Kesteven is a district going places. With a population of over 140,000, its main towns include Grantham, Stamford, Bourne and Market Deeping.
• There are plans for 14,000 new homes and 10,000 more jobs by 2036, ensuring the district’s economic growth
• South Kesteven has excellent connectivity making it a great place to conduct world-class business
• InvestSK is South Kesteven District Council’s economic development company. Responsible for leading South Kesteven’s ambitious economic growth agenda, InvestSK works to support local businesses to grow, deliver new inward investment projects, boost the arts, heritage and visitor economy offers, and enhance the skills of the district’s future workforce.
• A number of leading organisation already have their headquarters in the area
• The district has a heritage of discovery and innovation which spans many industries and sectors including agriculture and engineering
• Sir Isaac Newton shaped the laws of physics from his home near Grantham and Bourne boasts rich motor racing heritage thanks to British Racing Motors
• Stamford, as the UK’s first conservation area, is one of the finest Georgian towns in the country and has become a modern magnet for significant businesses, independent retailers and restaurants

University of Lincoln

• The University of Lincoln was awarded Gold – the highest standard possible – in the national Teaching Excellence Framework, an independent assessment of teaching quality in UK higher education. The award reflects its exciting teaching, great support for students and excellent employment outcomes.
• Lincoln is ranked 22nd in The Guardian University Guide 2019. The institution is known for a pioneering approach to working with employers, which has been recognised with a Lord Stafford Award and Times Higher Education Award.
• In the National Student Survey 2018, students rated Lincoln in the top 10 in the UK for overall student satisfaction with several of its courses placed number one overall for their subject areas.
• Among its most recent graduates, 96 per cent were in work or further study six months after finishing their course with more than 80 per cent in graduate level roles.
• More than half of its research is judged to be internationally excellent or world leading (Research Excellence Framework).

For media information contact:
Jez Ashberry
Shooting Star
01522 528540
07780 735071