The D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) has awarded Derby City Council over £9m in funding – £6.875m from its Getting Building Fund and £2.2m from its Growing Places Fund – to support the development of a Nuclear Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (Nuclear AMRC) at Infinity Park in Derby.
The Nuclear AMRC Midlands research and development facility will provide c.4,300m2 of new floorspace dedicated to research and development, which will support productivity growth and sustainable practises within the manufacturing sector and help to position Derby and the wider D2N2 region as a key advanced manufacturing and innovation hub for the UK nuclear centre and beyond.
Bringing together the University of Sheffield’s Nuclear AMRC and the University of Derby’s Institute for Innovation in Sustainable Manufacturing (IISE), the facility will carry out research, innovation, supply chain development and teaching with the purpose of developing the skills and capability of businesses in the region and nationally, to support the UK Government objectives for Net Zero by 2050 and growth in manufacturing from 11% GDP to 20% GDP by 2030.
Locally, the facility will support local SMEs to improve their productivity by providing access to high quality research and development opportunities, tailored business support and opportunities to upskill their workforce, creating a broader and more resilient economic base. Workers will have access to specialist training and development to equip them for more productive and higher paid roles.
The Nuclear AMRC Midlands will deliver 70 direct jobs, support 35 collaborative R&D projects and support 100 businesses through the Fit For Nuclear supply chain development programme in its first five years of operation. Fifty learners will be supported, with a further 50 employees upskilled.
Elizabeth Fagan, Chair of the D2N2 LEP Board said:
“Our recovery and growth strategy highlights the importance of low carbon growth and raising productivity levels across our region. Our investments into Infinity Park and the Nuclear AMRC will play a critical role to in developing clusters of highly productive and sustainable businesses across D2N2 and supporting local economic development.”
Paul Simpson, Chief Executive at Derby City Council added:
“Another step forward for this fantastic project. The proposed facility is great news for Derby’s SME businesses. We hope that this will further propel Infinity Park Derby as the manufacturing destination of choice. Having a world-class research facility on our doorstep is a huge boost for the city and supports our drive to emerge stronger in our economic recovery.”
Andrew Storer, Chief Executive Officer of the Nuclear AMRC, said:
“We’re delighted to secure funding for the new facility at Infinity Park, and will continue to work with D2N2, the University of Derby and other local partners to deliver high-value jobs and support the region’s economic recovery. With the transition to net-zero emissions at the top of the national and international agenda, there will be huge long-term opportunities for manufacturers of all sizes in nuclear and other low-carbon sectors such as offshore renewables, hydrogen and carbon capture. It’s part of our job to help the supply chain in and around Derby to win that work.”
Professor Warren Manning, Provost – Innovation and Research at the University of Derby, said:
“Co-locating our Institute for Innovation in Sustainable Engineering with the Nuclear AMRC opens up new possibilities for our academics, who are already engaged in work to help achieve the UK’s decarbonisation and Net Zero goals in sectors such as rail and logistics.
“The support of D2N2 to enable this collaboration will also further enhance Derby’s international reputation as a centre for industrial innovation, and help drive the recovery and future prosperity of our city and region.”