The National Skills Academy for Retail welcomes its 50th skills shop

Swindon has become the destination for the 50th member of the National Skills Academy for Retail’s skills shops.

The new skill shop is in McArthurGlen’s Swindon Designer Outlet in Swindon town centre. It will provide training for the retail sector, offering a range of different programmes to suit all individual and employer needs.

Skills shops are located across the UK, offering information and advice on training opportunities to retailers of all sizes, their employees or those seeking to get into the sector, including pre-employment courses, Apprenticeships, management training and bespoke programmes.

Since launching in 2009 the network has gone from strength to strength with skills shops in all four nations and in many of the country’s major retail towns and cities, including Sheffield, Nottingham, Edinburgh and Plymouth.  In September, four new skills shops will open in Swindon, Cambridge, Canterbury and Hastings.

Jane Rexworthy, Head of the National Skills Academy for Retail said: “We are pleased to welcome our fiftieth member to the network. This is a huge achievement for the organisation.  Each of our skills shops provides a valuable service to their area’s residents and businesses, where often retail is key to the local economy.

“Retail is the largest private sector employer in the UK, with a £315bn turnover. To continue the success of our retail industry we need to ensure the workforce has the right skills. From honing customer service to creating the wow factor with visual merchandising, our network helps retailers be as successful and profitable as they can be.”

Paul Johnson, Employment and Skill Director of Seetec who will be running the Swindon Skills Shop, said: “We are delighted to join the National Skills Academy for Retail.  This new facility will be a welcome addition to Swindon and its strong retail sector. We hope to assist lots of retailers to make the most of their businesses and staff, as well as advising anyone interested in getting into retail about the paths and qualifications available to them.”

Tina Cumpstey, Centre Manager at McArthurGlen’s Swindon, said: “We are thrilled to have the Swindon Skills Shop based in our centre. As one of Swindon’s premier shopping attractions, we want to help support and improve the town’s retail offer. The skills shop will give retailers and their employees the opportunity to gain the skills to make their businesses shine and will promote retail as a career of choice to young people in the area.”

To find your nearest skills shop visit


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