AN aerospace defence giant has celebrated its training facility’s one year anniversary.

In its first 12 months, the Academy for Skills Knowledge at BAE Systems in Samlesbury has delivered more than 250,000 learning and training hours and welcomed more than 550 apprentices through its doors.

It has also had visits from more than 1,000 school children, as it offers the chance for youngsters to learn more about a career in engineering and technology.

The academy has welcomed visitors from India, Turkey, Malaysia, Belgium, the United Arab Emirates, USA and Australia as well as trainees from Saudi Arabia.

HRH The Prince of Wales visited the academy in March and a number of senior government ministers.

Nigel Davies, Principal at the Academy for Skills and Knowledge, said: “Over the past 12 months the Academy has showcased BAE Systems’ skills, training and education capabilities and grown into a truly demand-led and inspirational learning place.

“I have seen young people from local schools as well as our next generation of designers and engineers, embrace new and advanced technologies in the Academy.

“It has been a delight to welcome visitors to the academy from across the world and demonstrate the investment we are making in learning and development with our existing and future workforce.”