The aim of this group is to achieve an evidence-based understanding of the current position of skills in the region and to advocate for system changes which will address major gaps. 

The Group works with local education authorities and providers and is focusing on three priorities:

  • Career Education in Schools - it is imperative that young people get the best possible education about career opportunities available to them, particularly in their local area, and the various pathways they can take.
  • Apprenticeships and Training - apprenticeships create a school-to-industry pipeline enabling students to simultaneously earn qualifications, gain experience, and get paid work.
  • Digital Skills - the pandemic has transformed and accelerated the use of technology in the way businesses and academic institutions operate.

Skills Project Group Interim Chair: Bob Ensch, Business Development Director, Morgan Sindall

Having led Morgan Sindall Construction’s business in Cambridge for over 10 years, Bob has recently moved into a part-time role assisting the new Area Director. The company operates across the public and private sectors to deliver the social infrastructure around us – from schools, universities and hospitals to retail, office and leisure environments.

Bob has also been a non-executive director of TrAC (www.tracweb.co.uk), an apprenticeship training agency in the construction industry in the East of England for the last 7 years, and is a Trustee of the Cambridge Forum for the Construction Industry (www.cfci.org.uk). Bob represents Morgan Sindall Construction as a member of Cambridge Ahead, and also sits on the Employment and Skills Board for the Cambridge & Peterborough Combined Authority.

Project Group Members

  • Arm*: Khaled Benkrid, Director of Education and Research / Nicholas Sample, Senior Manager, Arm School Program
  • Anglia Ruskin University*: Jon Bouffler, Director of Learning Development Services
  • AstraZeneca*: Kim Hardman, UK Apprentice Programme Manager 
  • Aveva*: Charlotte Steggall, Early Careers and Talent Social Media Manager
  • Birketts*: Abigail Trencher, Partner & Head of Employment Law
  • Cambridge Assessment: Tim Oates, Group Director Assessment, Research & Development
  • Cambridge City Council: Jemma Little, Economic Development Manager
  • Cambridgeshire County Council: Jonathan Lewis, Service Director: Education 
  • Cambridge Regional College: Michelle Dowse, Deputy Principal
  • Cambridge University Hospitals*: Vanessa Anderson, Apprenticeship Programme Manager / Karen Clarke, Associate Director of Workforce
  • Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Combined Authority: Fliss Miller, Senior Responsible Officer (Workforce & Skills) / Laura Guymer, Apprenticeship Levy Advisor
  • Careers and Enterprise Company: Daryl Keyworth, Regional Lead
  • The Crown Estate*: Deborah Clark, Community Investment Manager
  • Deloitte*: Dr Samuel Smithers, Executive, Financial Advisory
  • First Intuition*: Gareth John, CEO / Chloe Mattick, Marketing, PR and Communications Executive
  • Frontier Developments*: Robert Senior, Head of Talent
  • Form the Future: Anne Bailey, Co-Founder and Director
  • Growth Works: Gareth Preece, Managing Director for Skills
  • Hill* / Women into Construction CIC: Shelley Lawrence, Project Manager
  • Huntingdonshire District Council: Paul Gibbons, Economic Development Officer
  • Jagex*: Michael Williams, Senior Talent Acquisition Specialist
  • Marshall of Cambridge*: Christopher Walkinshaw, Group Corporate Communications Director
  • Mick George*: Stuart Costello, Marketing Director
  • Mills and Reeve*: Sandy Boyle, Head of HR
  • Morgan Sindall*: Helen Clements, Community Investment Advisor 
  • Mott MacDonald*: Rosie Lugg, Education Advisor
  • OneNucleus: Tony Jones, CEO
  • Socius Development Ltd*: Joel Colthart, Project Manager
  • Swavesey Village College: Andrew Daly, Principal
  • University of Cambridge*: Alastair Currie, Public Affairs Co-ordinator Jon Datta, Deputy Head of Widening Partnership
  • Urban & Civic*: Rebecca Britton, Communications, Communities and Partnerships
  • Volac*: Mary-Rose Gavin, Learning and Development Manager
  • Wellcome Sanger Institute*: Julia Wilson, Associate Director

* Member/Member organisation

Cambridge Ahead:

  • Jane Paterson-Todd, CEO
  • Dan Thorp, Director of Policy and Programmes
  • Lawrence Morris, Manager of Policy and Programmes
  • Matilda Becker, Policy Officer

Career Insight Videos

The Skills Group is passionate about the importance of young people getting the best possible education regarding the career opportunities available to them and the various pathways they can take into work.

In order to support this objective, raise career aspirations and broaden horizons for young people, we have produced a series of careers videos for use in schools and colleges across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough. 

These feature young people from across a range of sectors from with Cambridge Ahead membership organisations and beyond.

Latest News & Insights


07761 511 766


Sarah Brereton, Director, Limewash
07796 583 223

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