Local contractor Ed Lister will play an instrumental role in deciding what the City Football Academy looks like on completion in 2014.
“A lot of guys want a career in horticulture but there’s more to it than just getting out and cutting grass on a road verge and strimming,” Lister said.
“To get the most out of it there’s so much that can be learned and the beauty of taking people on locally is that we want them to create a sense of ownership so they can do something they feel proud of."
“It’s local to them, it becomes part of their life, they walk past it and if there’s pride and ownership then in turn, there will be respect for that as a landscape and as part of their street scene."
Creating opportunities for young people is at the heart of the City Football Academy project and Daniel Lewis is one such local beneficiary who has taken the opportunity to become a Trainee Landscaper at the club.
“It’s been a massive privilege to be involved with this up to this stage,” Lewis reflected.
“To see what it was, what it is now and to what it will be in completion is such a huge privilege - I really appreciate the opportunity I’ve been given and want to make the most of it.”
As well as construction positions, employment opportunities for local people will arise with the creation of around 95 permanent positions ranging from landscaping, arboriculture and water management to administration, security and site management.
A minimum 70% local recruitment target rate has been set.