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Manufacturers appoint directors to Automotive Academy

Although the Automotive Academy announced by the Government will not be fully operational until later next year, BMW, Honda, Jaguar, Land Rover, MG Rover Group, Nissan, and Leyland Trucks are amongst those who have already appointed senior directors to sit on the Academy's Project Board.

They have been joined by senior representatives from GKN, Perkins Engines and Unipart. Also on the Board, headed by Launch Director Nick Barter, former Director of Product Development at Jaguar, are representatives from the SMMT's Industry Forum and the DTI's Automotive Unit. The Automotive Academy is also receiving support from General Motors, PSA Peugeot Citroën and Toyota.

The Automotive Academy is being established to help orchestrate a new nationwide approach to improving skills standards across the manufacturing branch of the automotive industry in Britain and to create a range of kite-mark approved courses. With an administrative 'hub' in the West Midlands, the Academy will co-ordinate training and development across the UK via 12 regional 'spokes'. The first two will be in the Midlands and the North East. The Government has committed £15 million to fund the start-up of the Academy over the next five years but the eventual aim is to become self-financing. UK universities, colleges of higher education and trade union representatives are also backing the new initiative.

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