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Mid Ulster leading the way for Engineering Innovation Excellence

29 May 2018
Mid Ulster engineering businesses are being encouraged to take advantage of a unique opportunity to hear from industry experts and local business leaders about new and emerging technologies and how they can be used, even by small enterprises, to achieve business growth.  
The ‘Mid Ulster Engineering Event – Facing the Future’ will be held on Tuesday 19 June in the Burnavon Theatre, Cookstown. The free event is being delivered as part of the ‘Mid Ulster Engineering Innovation Programme’ funded by Mid Ulster District Council and delivered by South West College’s InnoTech Centre which is designed to drive growth in Mid Ulster’s engineering sector.
The event’s keynote speaker, renowned manufacturing expert Peter Marsh, former Financial Times Manufacturing Editor and author of “The New Industrial Revolution” will be discussing the biggest drivers within 21st century manufacturing that are set to transform the sector, focusing on the latest breakthrough technologies including advanced robotics, automation and digital fabrication.
Businesses will also hear from Harald Egner, Chief Engineer at the UK’s High Value Manufacturing Catapult Centre, home to some of the most advanced manufacturing equipment in the world and is recognised as a global expert in 21st century manufacturing. 
To provide a local perspective, expert panellists representing successful Mid Ulster businesses including Strickland Ireland, Specialist Joinery Group and other local leading companies will join Peter on stage to discuss their approach to driving forward digital advances to increase efficiency and stimulate growth. 
Business support agencies including Manufacturing NI, Invest NI and InterTrade Ireland will also be on hand to provide advice and guidance to businesses and outline funding opportunities available to improve their innovation capability and success. 
Welcoming the event, Councillor Kim Ashton, Chair of Mid Ulster District Council stated, 
“Mid Ulster is widely recognised as a regional manufacturing ‘hub’ and the sector plays a vital role in the local economy. Mid Ulster District Council has prioritised support for the sector in its economic development strategy and believes it is critical to deliver interventions such as this event to equip Mid Ulster businesses with the know-how to exploit the potential of new technologies and enable them to engage directly with industry leaders from across the sector”.  
Dr Jill Cush, Deputy Chief Executive at South West College, said, 
“This event presents an excellent opportunity for local manufacturers to gain practical expert-led advice on how to approach the next generation of manufacturing. We are delighted that leading UK Manufacturing Experts will be joining us to introduce local businesses to the trends, opportunities and challenges associated with the digitisation of manufacturing, and help them recognise how this can benefit their supply chain, productivity and competitiveness”
Ms Paula McCloskey, Marketing Director at Specialist Joinery Group, who are actively embracing a range of new technologies and automation, said,
“We are really looking forward to being involved in this innovative event for the engineering sector in Mid Ulster and sharing our views on how digital manufacturing is transforming our growing family business.”
The event runs from 10am to 1pm with a light lunch also provided. Businesses MUST register for the event by contacting Clodagh O’Neill at South West College on 028822 55223 or registering online at www.bit.ly/MU-Future.
This event is open to all businesses, however, priority will be given to engineering and manufacturing businesses based in the Mid Ulster District Council area. 
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