• Pippa Hackett

A warm welcome for the announcement of significant investment in skills for the Midlands region


Thanks to Cllr Mark Hackett for deputising for me at today's visit and for welcoming Minister Simon Harris to Offaly

Today my Government colleague, Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science Simon Harris TD announced a significant investment in skills for the Midlands region.


He visited the National Construction Training Centre in Mount Lucas, Co Offaly where he:

  • Launched Ireland’s first ever Scaffolding Apprenticeship programme;

  • Announced that Laois & Offaly ETB has secured approval to develop a proposal which will deliver significant additional capacity at their retrofitting and Near Zero Energy Buildings (NZEB) training facility;

  • And turned the sod on a new Demonstration Park for Modern Methods of Construction, a key action in the Government’s Housing for All programme.

The investment in and expansion of the National Construction Training Centre at Mount Lucas places this Offaly campus at the Centre of a new direction for the Midlands. The Midlands was the proud hub of power generation in the country for decades and now, with thanks to the work of the Department of Skills and Laois Offaly ETB we will be at the centre of building and retrofitting the new Ireland, sustainably - a win for both jobs and our planet's finite resources.


At my recent visit to the National Construction Training Centre in Mount Lucas

Today's launch is yet another step towards delivering on Programme for Government and Housing for All strategy targets. My very best wishes to all at Mount Lucas for a day of celebration for work well done.

I look forward to visiting the Demonstration Park when the time comes. I encourage anyone with an interest in a new start in construction or to build on previous experience to look into the courses and apprenticeships available at Mount Lucas - many are short and all are very relevant to today's economy.