Scottish installers warm to energy efficiency training

A new training centre has proved such a big hit with Scottish heating installers that its first Green Deal Advisor course sold out within days of  opening.

The Falkirk Renewables Centre, which opened in November, is Plumb Center’s eighth academy designed to teach practical skills linked to energy saving technologies. It also provides installers with the training and qualifications needed to benefit from the UK government’s new Green Deal energy efficiency initiative. Plumb Center’s practical approach to developing the skills of installers has been welcomed by the Scottish Executive, among others.

The Falkirk centre offers fully accredited courses, run by training partner Sevenoaks Energy Academy, on technologies including biomass, solar thermal, ground source and air source heat pumps, photovoltaics (PV), vented and unvented hot water. Interest in the centre has been raised further by the support of the Low Carbon Skills Fund, which gives Scottish businesses with up to 250 employees the opportunity to apply for up to £12,500 towards employee training costs.

Providing half of the training cost, up to a maximum of £500 per training episode, the Fund has the potential to help each employer with up to 25 sessions of staff training. All of the training courses currently delivered at the Falkirk centre qualify for this support.

The Falkirk centre also boasts working displays and training rigs from manufacturers including Worcester Bosch, Kingspan, Windhager, Broseley, Myson, Heatrae Sadia and Alpha.

“I’m thrilled with the response to the opening of the Falkirk Renewables Centre,” said Robert Beagley, Plumb Center’s Regional Trading Director. “It gives installers access to the top class training that will help them secure the future of their business. The Low Carbon Skills Fund has also provided a welcome boost for Scottish installers wishing to widen their skills base and to participate fully in the Green Deal.

“We believe that Plumb Center’s training, together with the new subsidy, provides the most cost effective entry for installers into the marketplace. In the past the cost of training was a real barrier to entry, but now this has been removed.”