A new Employment and Skills Hub has been created in West London to help residents and businesses that are affected by the pandemic. The Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation (OPDC) were able secure over a quarter of a million pounds of HS2 funding.

The hub is created in partnership with West London College and the Department for Work and Pensions, as well as the following London boroughs: Ealing, Hammersmith and Fulham and Brent.

The funding, which is taken from HS2 Business and Local Economy Fund (BLEF), will help local businesses in difficulties to stay operational and keep staff. It will also help local residents to develop the skills they need to access employment.

The Old Oak and Park Royal area of West London is being transformed to accommodate the new HS2 station. Park Royal is one of the biggest industrial estates in London, with 1,700 businesses and 40,000 employees. Its survival is therefore crucial for the area and the wider UK economy.

Employment and Skills Hub

David Warnes, Deputy Principal Strategy, Planning and Communications and Managing Director, West London College is quoted to have said:

“West London College is very excited to be partnering with the OPDC Employment and Skills Hub. Now, more than ever, it is important that we work collaboratively to support employers and individuals into sustainable, high quality employment. The Hub will be a crucial player in making this happen.”

HS2 Minister Andrew Stephenson said: “As construction of HS2 progresses, it’s crucial that impacted residents and businesses continue to be supported and benefit from the jobs and skills this project creates.

    “With over £7 million already invested in helping communities along the HS2 route, it’s great to see this latest funding go to creating a new Employment and Skills Hub in West London, providing an economic stimulus as the country fights back from Covid-19”

Applications for funding are currently welcomed.

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