Cycle training giant ATG Training has today told CI.N of a significant investment in a new headquarters for its cycle mechanic training courses.
Moving to a purpose-built facility based in Oxford, where ATG’s parent company has invested in the new building, the move bolsters the workshop size by 25%, plus a mezzanine level “practically doubling” available space.
Below we interview Julian Thrasher (pictured), workshop trainer at ATG and regular contributor to CI.N’s own tech columns.
What’s driven the move to Oxford?
The opportunity arose as the lease on our current building was up for review, and given that our parent company has a brand new £8M Technology Centre in Oxford – a city with a very strong cycling ethos – it seemed like a no-brainer for us to move. The new site is larger, has better road and rail access and geographically spreads out our workshop sites a little more, being further from both our London and Stafford workshops.
In addition the new workshop is in its own newly renovated area of the Activate Learning Blackbird Leys Technology Campus, meaning we have our own bespoke area, as well as access to the campus facilities, including a refectory, showers and hopefully a small test track.
How big’s the new place and how’s the space divided?
The new workshop itself is 25% larger than our old one downstairs and also has a mezzanine floor, practically doubling our available space and addressing some fundamental issues of the old Aylesbury workshop. It is also more self-contained and with some exciting developments planned.
How much capacity have you for expansion of staff, course numbers etc?
In the short-term we will run with the same capacity as we had at Aylesbury, but once we are established then we can look at the viability of expansion and of running two separate and different courses at once, depending of course upon demand and staffing.
We will be looking to recruit a new sales and recruitment manager for the Oxford Site, whose role will include liaising with employers and ensuring our Cytech courses are kept full.
What courses will be on offer?
The whole suite of Cytech technical courses along with the home mechanic and assessment only options will be available for delivery at the new Oxford Campus.
What’s the workshop kitted out with to make mechanic’s lives easier?
Of course we’ll be fully kitted out with Park Tools thanks to Madison and feel that they give us the best range of tooling under one brand. We’re particularly impressed with the PRS-33 electric workstand.
Lighting and noise reduction will be the biggest benefit to mechanics attending the new workshop. This was one of the biggest bug bears of the old workshop, so it’s nice to finally address this. It also gives us the chance to try a new workshop layout that will assist learning and hopefully inspire mechanics to think about the layout of their own workshops when they go back to their place of work.
How can bike shops get their staff enrolled? Any financial assistance available on certain courses?
Places on the Cytech Training Courses can be booked via the ATG Website – http://www.atg-training.co.uk/ – or by calling our sales and recruitment team on 01296 674995.
Employers seeking to use the apprenticeship scheme – either to recruit a new member of staff or to up-skill existing staff – should also contact our sales and recruitment team who will be able to advise and assist in all aspects of the on-boarding process of an apprentice, including available funding, additional costs and help with recruitment.
To mark the opening of the Oxford workshop we will be running a special opening offer promo for commercial courses at our new Oxford workshop. There will be a 20% discount for ACT members who book a course during May and June, a 10% Discount for private individuals during the same time and a one off special of a 15% discount for individuals booking both a Cytech 2 and Cytech 3 course during May and June. These discounts are for the Oxford workshop only and apply only to commercial courses. T&C apply.
Just in case people wonder, Mike and I will still be the trainers in the workshop. I’m excited about the move and the chance to elevate the workshop once again to keep the Cytech Technical courses at the cutting edge of maintenance training.