Sheffield’s University Technical Colleges commended by Royalty as UK Business Heroes

16th November 2020

Sheffield’s two University Technical Colleges have been commended by Royalty for their role in supporting the local community during the coronavirus pandemic.

UTC Sheffield City Centre, Matilda Street, and UTC Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park, Old Hall Road, are among 19 organisations in the city that have been recognised in the UK Business Heroes awards.

The UK Business Heroes Campaign, spearheaded by the British Chambers of Commerce and backed by HRH the Countess of Wessex, aims to recognise the incredible work that organisations are doing in the most challenging of years.

During the first Covid-19 lockdown earlier this year, pupils and staff at both of the city’s trailblazing UTCs, which are part of The Sheffield UTC Academy Trust, made protective face masks and donated scores of disposable aprons, safety glasses and googles to NHS staff.

One member of the curriculum staff also delivered medical supplies by motorbike to hospitals in South Yorkshire as well as medication to shielding and vulnerable people in Sheffield.

Nick Crew, Executive Principal of The Sheffield UTC Academy Trust, said: “It’s great to see this national recognition for our students and staff who have applied their technical knowledge and skills to help others and problem solve during a global pandemic. I am extremely proud of them.”

In a letter to the awards winners, HRH The Countess of Wessex said: “It has given me great pride to hear how businesses have gone the extra mile to help during the Coronavirus pandemic.

“For this reason, I am delighted to support the British Chambers of Commerce UK Business Heroes campaign that recognises the incredible work businesses have carried out across the UK, in the most challenging of years.

“I want to take this opportunity to thank you for your positive contributions, congratulate you on your recognition as a UK Business Hero and wish you every success in your endeavours in the weeks and months ahead as we look to the recovery of the country.”

UTCs are government funded technical schools that provide academic and technical qualifications to match the skills needs of regional employers, supporting economic growth and employment.

Together, UTC Sheffield City Centre and UTC Sheffield Olympic Legacy Park offer five technical specialisms – engineering and advanced manufacturing, creative and digital media, computing, health sciences and sport science – and are backed by 70 employers.

Both UTCs recruit 13 to 19-year-olds from across Sheffield City Region. They learn in the latest high-tech facilities and complete technical qualifications as well as GCSEs and A Levels.  

The curriculum and buildings have been designed with employers who also provide industry projects, work experience and work placements.

Young people can join the UTCs in Year 9 or Year 12 for September 2021. For more information about the next virtual open events, and to apply now, visit

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