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Window on the future of Manufacturing goes live

posted 24 Mar 2010, 07:05 by RiDO Rotherham
Latest technology is turning a worldwide spotlight on companies that are continuing South Yorkshire's tradition of developing new ideas and innovations.

They are the focus of a new website promoting the region's super-technology park and the world-leading companies, large and small, involved there.

The Advanced Manufacturing Park (AMP), the only one of its kind in the UK, is a 100-acre site in Rotherham, on its border with Sheffield. It is a joint venture between public and private sector organisations, including regional development agency Yorkshire Forward and land-owner UK Coal, creating an internationally recognised centre for engineering, innovation, research and manufacturing excellence.

The new website,, provides information about the technologies and organisations already at the Park, and an overview of the development opportunities available to high-tech companies keen to move in and rub shoulders with industry innovators, including the University of Sheffield's Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre with Boeing. . The latest to announce it plans taking space at the Park is Rolls-Royce.

Yorkshire Forward's assistant director of business, Jim Farmery, said: “Some of the world's most important high-tech innovations are being made at the AMP. Dormer Tools and other R&D and manufacturing specialists are here. The likes of Boeing and Messier-Dowty are partnering the university. And these and others are increasingly collaborating and sharing knowledge with like-minded companies.

“The AMP is playing a vital role in helping our manufacturers share knowledge, improve productivity and achieve success in the global economy.”

The website is part of a wider campaign to raise awareness of the Park's successes and help intermediaries and companies seeking locations.

For some manufacturers, a key factor in the decision to relocate is the proximity and access to research organisations developing new technologies and integrating them into industrial processes.

Technologies at the Park are turning vision into business, and bringing contracts and jobs into the regional economy. They include friction stir welding, laser metal deposition and cold metal spray processes at the TWI Technology Centre (Yorkshire) – where the equipment is among the most advanced in the world.

The region's SMEs can access these key technologies and develop novel solutions through TWI's wide-ranging technology transfer programmes, which offer the opportunity to benefit from subsidised technical support. Since 2002, TWI Yorkshire has helped to create and safeguard 1,297 jobs and produce £81m in turnover for companies in the Yorkshire and Humber region, through a series of Yorkshire Forward-funded Technology Transfer Programmes.

TWI's Mark Roughsedge said: “The AMP has greatly enhanced our presence in the region and we have built strong professional and personal links with our neighbour organisations and companies. The convenience, accessibility and prestige of the Park have been a huge asset to TWI and we look forward to continuing to build and strengthen these links.” Development opportunities range from small office, workshop and lab space, through medium-sized hybrid and light industrial units to larger custom-built design and build options.