Boston is in ‘desperate’ need for engineers with Brexit looming on the horizon and mechanisation driving forward, the borough’s council leader has said.
Councillor Michael Cooper spoke to Local Democracy Reporter Daniel Jaines after permission was granted for Boston College to build an Engineering, Manufacturing and Training Centre (EMAT) earlier this week.
He praised the plans, adding it was ‘important we encourage engineering in this area’.
“We’ve got a real shortage of engineers so we need to grow some of our own,” he said.
“I speak to a lot of people, a lot of employers in the area, they’re all desperately short of engineers so there’s a bright future for those pupils if they can get a good degree or a good understanding of engineering there’s plenty of employment out there for them in the area.
“There’s the jobs available, with the mechanisation of industry whether within the packing plants or out in the fields the mechanisation is moving forward at quite a pace and we need the engineers to repair and service the machinery that’s being produced now.”
Councillor Cooper said Brexit was ‘still very much an unknown’ for the area and it still wasn’t clear how much of an impact leaving the European Union would have.
“We don’t know if we’re going lose any of our overseas labour or whether they are going to stay with us.
“If we lose some of the overseas labour it will drive mechanisation and as that drives forward we’re going to need more engineers.
“So, its a bit of an unknown, Brexit is going to have an impact but we don’t know how much.”
However, he said he was confident the space left would mean a bright future for local pupils.
“Whatever happens I think there will be a reduction in overseas labour and we will most definitely need these engineers to work on the machinery coming online.”