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Lean manufacturing launch proves a huge success

June 13, 2014

West Cheshire College is celebrating the successful launch of its new operational lean manufacturing line.

Over 60 potential students and employers visited the College’s Chester Campus to see the unique facility and discover more about the range of fault finding courses and Apprenticeships now available.

The innovative facility, developed with the help of Vauxhall Motors and Unilever, has enabled the College to offer two new courses in electrical fault finding and mechanical fault finding.

As part of the event, representatives from Vauxhall, Unilever, Burton’s Biscuits and Ball Packaging, who run Apprenticeship programmes and staff training with the College, gave speeches to employers who attended.

Mark Nuttall, Engineering Technical Trainer and Apprentice Co-ordinator from Unilever, said: “We currently have 35 Apprentices across the UK and we are keen to increase this number and continue to make Apprenticeships better.

“The best thing about working with West Cheshire College is that you ask for something, they listen to your needs and then they deliver.”

The College is one of only a few in the country to have a fully operational lean manufacturing line, which will be used as an innovative training facility.

Tracey Welch. Human Resources Officer from Ball Packaging, said: “The College has state-of-the-art facilities which meet the needs of our business.

“We have been impressed with the flexible staff, the passion for which they stand for as well as the standards they work to.

“We currently employ 12 Apprentices via the College and we aim to add another five this year as well as continue to commit to developing Apprentices throughout the company.”

Bernie Toolan, Plant Strategic Maintenance Manager from Vauxhall, said: “Ever since we started our relationship with West Cheshire College they have supported our vision of creating the engineers of tomorrow.

“I personally want to say a big thank you to them and hope that we will partner with them for a very long time.”

Tim Benn, Refinery Manager from Burton’s Biscuit Company, said; “We have partnered with West Cheshire College to train our staff and to date all our 24 staff have passed NVQ Level 2 in Engineering

“West Cheshire College is our preferred partner and long may it continue.”

Vauxhall Motors and Unilever have supported the College with the launch of the manufacturing line by donating components. 

The manufacturing line is now ready to use as a training facility for College courses and incorporates many features used in manufacturing and production industries, such as mechanical, electrical, pneumatics, programmable logic control (PLCs) and robotics.

For more information on courses offered at West Cheshire College, call the employer hotline on 01244 656499 or visit

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