Save your CAD files, down your machine tools and make way for the MANTRA truck – the Global Manufacturing Festival is coming to London.
The 2013 Festival, a showcase of the strengths of manufacturing capability in the South Yorkshire region now in its third year, will launch at the Houses of Parliament on February 26.
Representatives from Tata Steel, the University of Sheffield, the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre with Boeing, other regional businesses and MPs will descend on Westminster for the launch which intends to attract businesses and schools to the Sheffield City Region’s most important annual manufacturing event which takes place from April 17-19.
Minister of State for Trade and Investment Lord Green will attend the launch and is expected to say a few words to give the event, now in its third year, his backing.
Confirmed sponsors of the Festival are patent attorneys HGW, law firm Nabarro, NatWest, Sheffield City Region Local Enterprise Partnership, Siemens, Tata and the University of Sheffield. Sheffield Hallam University is also involved and the organisers hope to secure more support from companies based in the region.
MANTRA, a specially converted articulated truck packed with engineering exhibits, will be parked outside Parliament to demonstrate engineering techniques such as digital 3D modelling technology to MPs and other visitors. Mantra tours UK businesses and schools as a permanent roadshow showcasing the capabilities of the AMRC, one of seven High Value Manufacturing Catapult centres.
The truck will be manned by young Sheffield apprentices and representatives of AMRC and local business ready to field questions from ministers and young people which the display hopes to attract.
A mystery exhibit will accompany Mantra that will demonstrate South Yorkshire companies’ achievements in sustainable technology. Co-organisers the Sheffield Chambers of Commerce say there is an estimated £13 billion identified in regional renewables investment profiled for 2013/14.
Catalytic Clothing will show how textiles can be used as a catalytic surface to purify air. The company employs technology in a new way using a compound, Titania, which is imbued into fabrics by washing or early in the textile construction process.
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At the April event itself, the organisers expect to host nearly 100 exhibitors and expect more than 500 visitors to the annual event. A senior politician at Cabinet level is expected to provide the opening address.
New for 2013, a series of one-to-one business networking meetings is planned, where big companies and OEMs and explain their component needs to potential new suppliers.
Confirmed speakers at the Festival include senior people from Rolls-Royce and Rolls-Royce Nuclear, Firth Rixson, Nuclear Engineering Services, Siemens, with more in the pipeline from companies in the advanced tooling and medical products sector.
Event sponsor HGF, patent and trade mark attorneys, is supporting the event for the second year running. Parter Harry Hutchinson said “HGF is working at the heart of innovation with many global manufacturers. We are delighted to be sponsoring the GMF and bringing manufacturers from all industries together to drive growth for the future.
“In our experience the event has been a strong catalyst to driving forward new partnerships and business,” he added.
The Mantra transporter was established by the University of Sheffield’s Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre with Boeing and £500,000 funding from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council Knowledge Transfer Challenge.
For information about attending the London launch contact Deborah Egan, Deborah@ekspan.co.uk.