Aviation Parliamentary Group visits London Stansted
London Stansted today welcomed Grant Shapps MP to view progress on the airport’s £600 million transformation programme and visit the brand-new Stansted Airport College which opened its doors to the first students this week.
Mr Shapps, visiting in his capacity as the Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on General Aviation, was shown the latest design concepts for the airport’s new £130 million Arrivals Terminal, the centrepiece of Stansted’s five-year investment project to help unlock spare runway capacity and enhance the passenger experience.
The visit to the Airport College, the first on-site college of its kind at any major UK airport and a joint venture between Harlow College and London Stansted, was an opportunity for Mr Shapps to see first-hand the facilities and courses on offer to students designed to bridge the skills gap in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) subjects as well as specific airport areas such as aircraft and airport engineering, logistics, asset management, hospitality and customer service.
The development of the college is critical to supporting Stansted’s ambitious future growth plans and will provide skilled on-site workers and training opportunities for young people in the regional community surrounding the airport.
I am delighted Mr Shapps was able to join us at London Stansted today to see the progress we are making with our multi-million-pound investment project to transforming the airport, and to visit the first on-site technical college at any airport in the UK.
Both initiatives are great examples of our commitment and focus on how we are developing fantastic new facilities and the next generation of employees to ensure Stansted plays a vital role in making the East of England one of the best places in the world to live, work and do business.
Over the next decade, runway capacity in the south-east will be at a premium and Stansted will be responsible for delivering 50% of London’s expected passenger growth and make a greater contribution to improving the UK’s connectivity with the rest of the world so it’s key we develop a supply line of talent and unlock our spare runway capacity.
With our parliamentary group about to launch a Working Group looking at aviation jobs and skills, our visit to London Stansted came at an incredibly opportune moment. The development of Stansted’s own Airport College means that Britain now has a pioneering new way to train for the many STEM related professions that aviation provides.
I know that parliamentarians are keen to look closely at this collaboration between Harlow College and the airport and we were impressed to meet some of the first cohort of 293 students who start there within the next week.