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Prime Minister and Cabinet visit University of Sunderland

Keith Merrin, Director of National Glass Centre, the Prime Minister Boris Johnson, and Sir David Bell, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Sunderland

Published on 31 January 2020

The PM spent January 31 – the day the country formally left the European Union - visiting the University’s Institute for Automotive and Manufacturing Advanced Practice (AMAP) before hosting a Cabinet meeting at the University owned National Glass Centre (NGC).

The visit put international focus on the University as media from around the world gathered to report on and photograph the event.

Mr Johnson spent time talking with the University’s Vice Chancellor, Sir David Bell, before getting a tour of facilities both at AMAP and NGC.

Sir David Bell, said: “We consider it a great honour that the Prime Minister and his Cabinet wanted to visit the University of Sunderland on this very significant day in our nation's history.


“Sunderland prides itself on being a welcoming city. So when asked to host the meeting, we were delighted to accept.


“The Prime Minister’s first stop was the University’s Industry Centre, where he met businesses benefiting from the Sustainable Advanced Manufacturing project. He also spoke to engineering students connected with the Formula Student initiative.

“The Prime Minister then moved to National Glass Centre, where we have welcomed many high-profile visitors over the last 21 years. We can now add the Prime Minister and the Cabinet to the list. We embraced the opportunity to highlight the National Glass Centre’s activities and the work of the University, which owns the Centre.

“The Prime Minister and other Ministers met local business representatives, apprentices from the region, and a group of school children, before holding their historic Cabinet meeting overlooking the River Wear.

“Throughout the visit, there was an upbeat mood and a real sense that Sunderland is a great place to live, work, study and do business - now and in the future.”

During the visit, Mr Johnson and his Cabinet got the opportunity to meet with school children, University of Sunderland apprentices, and city business leaders, including John and Irene Lucas from Hays travel.

The delegation spent several hours at the National Glass Centre, where they held a Cabinet meeting, overlooking the River Wear.