A NEW academy for construction trainees has opened in Kirklees.
The academy, based at New Ing Mill, Field Lane, Batley, was officially opened in spectacular fashion - by Kirklees Deputy Mayor Clr Mary Harkin walking through a "brick wall".
The Academy was formed by Build, an organisation representing the construction industry in Kirklees.
It will train local unemployed people with the skills to carry out a range of construction crafts.
Trainees will then be able to seek jobs in the local building industry through their contacts with Build.
The launch of the academy follows a successful trial scheme earlier this year.
Out of 14 candidates attending a North Kirklees programme in March, 10 have gone on to get jobs.
Another 14 candidates complete their training programme in October - and building companies, plumbing and heating engineers have already signed up to take on the new trainees.
June Herrera, project manager for Build, said: "It is pleasing to see that the enterprise has had such a successful beginning.
"The academy will provide lasting benefit to the whole of the construction industry."
The academy is backed by bodies including Kirklees Council's Economic Development Service, Kirklees Neighbourhood Housing, development agency Yorkshire Forward and Huddersfield Technical College.
Other backers include Environment Concern, a charitable group promoting environmental improvement in Kirklees.
Anne Abbott, chief executive of Environment Concern, said: "The Build academy has been a true partnership and our achievements over the past six months are a testimony to that."