A NEW partnership has been formed between the area’s health trust and largest college to create ‘exciting opportunities’ for young people.

Blackburn College and East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust have signed a formal agreement called a ‘Memorandum of Understanding’.

The initiative will enable the college and the hospitals trust to work together to develop a number of schemes to benefit young people in the area.

A workforce education and training strategy for the trust will also be created to help give young people more chances to get involved.

The bodies also said it will help generate career opportunities for Blackburn College students by enabling them to gain meaningful employment at the hospitals trust.

This will include apprenticeships to underpin both clinical and non-clinical careers of First Choice in the local NHS.

Phil Watson CBE, chair of the corporation board at Blackburn College, said that the partnership will have several positives for people in East Lancashire.

He said: “This is an important development for both organisations which allows us to grow a local workforce, support the development of our health professionals and work collaboratively to promote the local and regional health and social care economy.”

The partnership comes after the recent announcement of an alliance between Blackburn with Darwen Council, Blackburn College and Lancaster University.

The three are working together for collaborative projects to drive growth and prosperity in the local area.

Bosses at the health trust said that the partnership with Blackburn College is important for both parties.

Kevin McGee, Chief Executive of ELHT, said: “We really value our relationship with the college and are happy that it continues to go from strength to strength.

“Both organisations are crucial to the local community, socially and economically.

“This is a great example of authentic stakeholder engagement, with two separate organisations working together for the good of local people, and for each other.”