Bridgwater College is to get a new £1.5million civil engineering and construction training facility.

The new build is being funded by EDF Energy to promote local skills to deliver the proposed Hinkley Point C project, which the energy supplier hopes will be operational by 2020. The training facility includes a single-storey, three-classroom teaching block with vehicle storage, and a maintenance and training area, stretching across eight acres of College land a the college’s Cannington site.

College vice-principal Andy Berry said: “This facility will be ideally located close to the proposed Hinkley C new build, and will mean trainees can learn to operate complex machinery safely in a realistic working environment using industry standard equipment.

“Equally, this will present training and employment opportunities for local people, including those who are keen to re-train or up-skill.

“We’re looking forward to opening the centre later in the year.”

The 26-week construction programme will ensure that both theoretical and practical training can be offered using industry vehicles and equipment, including groundwork, concrete pouring, construction plant and lifting operations.

The college is working on the project with Bath-based architect DKA and international construction services company, ISG.

ISG’s South-West managing director, John Rawlinson, said: “The mix of classroom-based learning and hands-on vehicle operation will greatly enhance the facilities available at Bridgwater College and provide an example for other institutions to follow.”