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Spotlight on: The Workforce Development Trust

Check out why The Workforce Development Trust #LoveBristol

14/02/2022

The Workforce Development Trust, a registered charity, is one of the 200+ businesses and organisations that call Redcliffe & Temple home.

Since 2020 they have been the proud owner-occupier of the iconic grade II listed lead shot tower ‘Vertigo’ on Cheese Lane.

With over 60 employees and counting based at their Bristol office, we caught up with their CEO John Rogers to find out more about The Workforce Development Trust, his favourite things about Redcliffe & Temple and why he loves doing business here.

TELL US A BIT ABOUT YOUR ORGANISATION

We acquired the lead shot tower in 2020 and moved in in March 2021 once the sitting tenants lease had expired. Although we’ve been in our current premises less than a year, we’re not new to the area – far from it in fact – if I walk to the top of Cheese Lane I can just about see our old offices on Temple Way!

The Workforce Development Trust is the parent company of our go to market brands: Skills for Health, Skills for Justice, SFJ Awards and People 1st International. The breadth and depth of our work is extensive, but the overarching aim is to develop the skills of teams and individuals across a broad range of sectors, both in the UK and internationally.

Uniquely, we are the only not-for-profit organisation of our kind operating across a range of vital sectors to support workforce development both in the UK and overseas.

BRISTOL LIGHT FESTIVAL 2022 IS COMING UP ON 1-6 MARCH, HOW ARE YOU INVOLVED?

Our office windows will take centre stage during the Light Festival, providing the backdrop for internationally renowned light artist Parker Heyl’s latest work.

It’s a bit of a novelty for the lead shot tower to be regarded as a work of art (even just temporarily) as I’m sure that the brutalist concrete tower that sits at the centre of our building is a bit Marmite for some!

Architectural preferences aside, I’m sure we we can all agree that the tower will provide the perfect canvas for Parker’s work, and we’re delighted to be able play a small part in putting on this fantastic event for the city.

 

WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE THING ABOUT THE REDCLIFFE AND TEMPLE AREA?

It’s pleasing that the building we proudly occupy is such an iconic part of the cityscape. As an organisation we really feel at home here even if the tower is freezing cold in the wintertime!

Being within easy reach of Bristol Temple Meads and close to the main bus routes in and out of the city makes it easy for us to connect with clients across the country as well as our colleagues up in Sheffield.Like many organisations since the pandemic, we have adopted hybrid working arrangements and we find that being right in the heart of the city gives people extra incentive to come into the office and connect with their colleagues.

We’re spoilt for choice in terms of cafes, restaurants and amenities in our immediate vicinity, which is great for grabbing a quick bite for lunch, socialising after work or conducting off site meetings. On a sunny day, it’s nice to be able to stretch your legs in Castle Park, take in the sights and sounds of the city or stroll by the river.

As an organisation we have been steadily expanding our footprint over the past year-18 months, so for us it has been a real boon being centrally located and having everything we could wish for on our doorstep.

To find out more about visit The Workforce Development Trust

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