The Waterton Centre is part of the Welsh Assembly’s business development portfolio and its objectives support the delivery of the Government’s ‘Wales: A Vibrant Economy’ economic development strategy, undertaking appropriate actions which will increase levels of economic competitiveness to global standards and support the sustainability of such improvements.

The Waterton Centre comprises 2,500 square metres of offices, training rooms, fully equipped workshops and professional conference facilities located adjacent to the Ford Engine plant at Waterton, Bridgend. Ford Motor Company Limited is an original partner of the Waterton Centre. Together Ford Motor Company Limited and the Waterton Centre aim to drive continuous improvement and excel in the implementation of leading edge maufacturing principles. With this support, the Centre’s purpose is to provide the manufacturing sector with a dynamic focus, a forum, a world class resource and an internationally respected centre of learning, all of which combine to address the realities and opportunities which will determine the direction of manufacturing in the 21st century. Most importantly, through the growth of networks, partnerships and collaborations of industry-representative groups, the Centre offers businesses a diverse source of support, new opportunities, information and insights, opening horizons to fresh perspectives and possibilities. At the same time, working within this context of support and influence enables individual businesses to voice their opinions more effectively, empowering them to help shape, develop and progress those strategies which will impact upon the prospects of manufacturing at every level.

A WORKING PARTNERSHIP The Waterton Centre has a focus on the following priorities within the W:AVE strategy:

1. Supporting businesses to become more competitive

2. Encouraging innovation

3. Deliver more demand-led training tailored to the needs of businesses

4. Further improving our skill base

The Waterton Centre is positioned within the Assembly’s Department for Economic Development and recognises the role and linkages of the Department for Education and Skills, the Sector Skills Councils and other partners in delivering increased economic prosperity.

The Bridgend complex, developed on part of the Ford engine plant, is already home to several key industry organisations including the Engineering Employers Federation, the Welsh Automotive Forum and the Aerospace Wales, DNA Wales and SEMTA the Sector Skills Council for science, engineering and manufacturing.