North Staffordshire concrete supplier Thorp Precast has won a contract to provide precast cladding panels for Staffordshire University's £40 million Catalyst building.

The 8,800 sq ft building, which is under construction at the Stoke-on-Trent campus in Leek Road, is due to be completed in next September, and will act as a study base for 6,500 new apprenticeships by 2030.

And now the precast brick cladding panels which will make up the facility's blue and red facade are currently in production at Thorp Precast.

Harvey Thorp, managing director at Thorp Precast said: "With most of our projects located in London and other major UK cities it is refreshing to be working on such an important landmark building in our local Staffordshire area.

"Thorp is all about modern methods of construction, driving new innovations in design and manufacturing, utilising the very latest precast technology, all of which have played a part in manufacturing precast units for this outstanding educational facility.

"All of our employees share a huge passion for delivering high-quality precast brickwork facades, but there has definitely been added motivation and extra pride taken in producing units for Staffordshire University, with the site being in such close proximity to the factory.

"We now look forward to installing the fully finished panels to produce what we are confident will be a striking contemporary façade referencing North Staffordshire's long and distinguished heritage for production of clay bricks and ceramics."

Pro vice-chancellor Andrew Proctor, said: "Staffordshire University is delighted to be working with Thorp Precast on the building facades.

"Thorp has an international reputation for design and delivery and it is important that we are drawing on this local talent in a project of this strategic importance.

"We are deeply committed to working in partnership with local suppliers to create effective supply-chains across Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire. We have kept the brick-miles to a minimum and we are committed to acting locally and being sustainable. I am really enjoying seeing The Catalyst building take shape."

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