UK-wide ATSTN National Training Centres officially opened to take advanced therapy and vaccine manufacturing training to new heights


National Horizons Centre, RoslinCT, together with its training partners, and the University of Birmingham will deliver high impact on-site and digital training capabilities, as part of the Advanced Therapies Skills Training Network (ATSTN)


Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult launch event , NHC

Today marks the official opening of the three ATSTN National Training Centres (NTCs) initiative. The launch took place at a special event with representatives from the three centres: National Horizons Centre, RoslinCT and the University of Birmingham. Held at the National Horizons Centre in Darlington and online, attendees heard how these NTCs bring with them complementing capabilities and a wealth of experience across GMP/GxP, manufacturing and bioprocessing and delivering virtual reality training. These topics collectively address the growing need in the UK for specialist skills in vaccine and advanced therapy manufacturing.

By providing specific on-site and digital training capabilities the NTCs will provide people with advanced career opportunities and access to essential training, helping to expand the advanced therapy and vaccine manufacturing workforce. The ATSTN initiative is backed by £4.7m in funding from the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy alongside Innovate UK, and is driven by industry and coordinated by the Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult.

The ATSTN programme will help grow the sector by creating economic opportunities for new jobs and industry-driven learning. With the industry workforce expected to double to more than 6,000 by 2024, this programme is further evidence of the Government’s commitment to expanding the UK expertise in advanced therapies.

Science Minister Amanda Solloway  said:

“These new training centres – backed by £4.7 million from the UK Government for the ATSTN initiative – will boost much-needed skills and expertise across the life sciences sector, particularly in vaccine and advanced therapy manufacturing.

Supporting our world-leading life sciences sector is crucial, having not only been vital throughout the pandemic but setting us on course to build back better.”

Matthew Durdy, Chief Executive Officer at Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult commented:

“With the continued growth of the UK advanced therapy industry and the ever-growing need for advanced therapies, the launch of these NTCs is a crucial step in ensuring the UK’s future capability to meet the demand is met. The ATSTN initiative was built on a foundation of collaboration, and the partnerships that have been developed to date, both with industry and academia, is proof of that. We are proud of the progress that has been made since the launch of the ATSTN and are confident that the launch of the NTCs will have a meaningful impact on our mission to upskill the UK workforce to develop and manufacture vaccines and advanced therapies at scale.”

The NTCs complement the other two parts of the ATSTN programme including the Online Training Platform, focused on upskilling existing staff within the industry; and the Career Converter, which matches an individual’s transferable skills from outside the sector and recommends applicable roles within advanced therapies and vaccine manufacturing.

About Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult

The Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult was established as an independent centre of excellence to advance the growth of the UK cell and gene therapy industry, by bridging the gap between scientific research and full-scale commercialisation. With more than 330 employees focusing on cell and gene therapy technologies, it works with partners in academia and industry to ensure these life-changing therapies can be developed for use in health services throughout the world. It offers leading-edge capability, technology and innovation to enable companies to take products into clinical trials and provide clinical, process development, manufacturing, regulatory, health economics and market access expertise. Its aim is to make the UK the most compelling and logical choice for UK and international partners to develop and commercialise these advanced therapies. The Cell and Gene Therapy Catapult works with Innovate UK. For more information please visit or visit

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