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National Skills Academy for Creative and Cultural Skills: Thurrock

Volume 498: debated on Wednesday 28 October 2009

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what progress has been made during the summer recess on securing the funding package for the National Skills Academy for Creative and Cultural Skills in Thurrock; and if he will make a statement. (295804)

My officials have been working with officials from the Learning and Skills Council (LSC) over the summer to secure a way forward for this and other National Skills Academy capital proposals. On 9 September, Geoff Russell, Acting Chief Executive of the LSC, wrote to all National Skills Academies, setting out a process for taking capital proposals forward. Since then, the NSA Creative and Cultural proposal was approved by the LSC Regional Committee on 14 October and is due to be assessed by the LSC's national Capital Committee on 2 November; if successful, it would then be able to proceed to implementation.

I and colleagues from the Department for Communities and Local Government believe that the NSA Creative and Cultural has a key role to play in the regeneration of the Thames Gateway through transforming the delivery of skills to meet business needs in this important sector. It will play a valuable role in the development of technician skills in the Performing Arts in the run-up to the 2012 Olympics and will provide a centre of excellence in these skills not available elsewhere.

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what recent discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government on the funding provision for the National Skills Academy for Creative and Cultural Skills in Thurrock; and if he will make a statement. (295805)

I can confirm that I had representations from my hon. Friend the Under-Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (Mr. Malik) during the summer recess in relation to the National Skills Academy for Creative and Cultural.

I and colleagues from the Department for Communities and Local Government believe that the NSA Creative and Cultural has a key role to play in the regeneration of the Thames Gateway through transforming the delivery of skills to meet business needs in this important sector. It will be playing a valuable role in the development of technician skills in the Performing Arts in the run up to the 2012 Olympics and will provide a centre of excellence in these skills not available elsewhere.