Coca-Cola Enterprises Totals £4m Investment in Education Over Past Three Years as it Opens Sixth Education Centre in Great Britain

Oct 10, 2014 9:45 AM ET

CCE Totals £4m Investment in Education Over Past Three Years as it Opens Sixth …

Coca-Cola Enterprises (CCE) has today underlined its continued commitment to youth development with the launch of a brand new £810,000 Education Centre at its Milton Keynes site. The opening marks a total of £4 million invested by CCE in its national education programme since 2011 which to date has reached over 300,000 young people.

Officially opened by Hubert Patricot, Executive Vice President and President, Europe Group - CCE and George Eustice MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary at the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs, the new facility at Milton Keynes is CCE’s sixth Education Centre across Great Britain.  Similar facilities are already in place at CCE’s other sites including Wakefield, Edmonton, Sidcup, East Kilbride and Continuum Recycling, CCE’s joint venture with ECO Plastics in Hemswell, Lincolnshire. Free and open to students aged 12 and above, the new centre aims to host over 200 visits per year, reaching more than 4,000 students from local secondary schools, colleges and universities.

The new Education Centre forms part of a wider £2 million investment at CCE’s Milton Keynes factory last year. This is combined with a further £1.5 million injection into operations occurring throughout 2014, taking total investment at the site to more than £16 million over the last five years.

With a curriculum-linked programme, visitors to CCE’s Education Centres receive subject related insight into manufacturing processes, alongside a guided tour of the factory. Each centre is run by a General Teaching Council registered teacher, employed full-time by CCE, and gives students a unique opportunity to develop their knowledge of the world of work, making connections between what they learn in the classroom and real-life modern manufacturing practices.

Today’s launch was also attended by both local Milton Keynes MPs, Mark Lancaster (Milton Keynes North) and Iain Stewart (Milton Keynes South) to get a first look at the centre. Pupils from local school, Milton Keynes Academy, also attended the event as the first school to visit the centre, taking part in an interactive classroom session to demonstrate it in action. Their visit complimented the recent work the students have undertaken as part of Young Enterprise’s Company Programme, where students set up and run a business for a year.  

Hubert Patricot, Executive Vice President and President, Europe Group at Coca-Cola Enterprises comments: “At Coca-Cola Enterprises we are extremely proud of the work our award-winning education programme has done to bring the worlds of business and education closer together. Today’s announcement of our investment milestone is proof of our recognition of the importance of highlighting the career opportunities available across the sector, whilst providing valuable insight into our business and the wider industry.

“This latest addition to our Education Centre initiative in Milton Keynes forms part of our ongoing commitment to the development of young people throughout Great Britain to inspire the next generation of engineers.”

Nicholas Nixon, operations director at Coca-Cola Enterprises Milton Keynes says: “We are committed to playing a positive role in the communities within which we operate, an integral part of which is helping to demystifying our industry for future generations. One of the best ways to achieve this is by opening up our factory doors.

“We are delighted to be launching the sixth of Coca-Cola Enterprises’ Education Centres across Great Britain, completing on-site education facilities at all of our manufacturing sites throughout the country. We look forward to welcoming schools from across the region to this state of the art facility to experience the site and learn more about the manufacturing process.”

George Eustice MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Farming, Food and Marine Environment at DEFRA comments: “The food and drink manufacturing sector is the UK’s biggest, generating almost £25 billion and employing 400 000 people. There is a wealth of exciting careers available across the industry and it’s important we develop a talented workforce for the future. Coca Cola’s Education Centres, such as this new site at Milton Keynes will help address this by changing perceptions and promoting the excellent opportunities this industry has to offer.”

Mark Lancaster MP, Member of Parliament for Milton Keynes North says: “The investment committed in the Education Centre will deliver sustainable career opportunities for future generations and I am delighted that a strong partnership will develop between our schools, businesses and local community in Milton Keynes.”

For more information on Coca-Cola Enterprises’ education programme, please visit