The Growth Company, Education and Skills, Logo
The Growth Company, Education and Skills, Logo

On Friday 12th August, Afzal Khan, MP for Manchester Gorton, met young learners and staff at a visit to The Growth Company’s Education and Skills Training Centre in Longsight, Manchester.

In a meeting facilitated by the Association of Employment and Learning Providers (AELP), Mr Khan heard from staff and learners carrying out St John Ambulance first aid training, who discussed their experiences with the Manchester Gorton MP.

The visit meant that AELP and The Growth Company were able to discuss some of the key issues facing the skills and employability sector with Mr Khan. This included the need to get young people and adults the right support they need to progress in sustainable employment, and to fund functional skills training – such as Maths and English – properly.

The Growth Company is an award-winning social enterprise with a mission to enable growth, create jobs and improve lives. They deliver a range of skills provision including apprenticeships, traineeships and skills bootcamps.  The Longsight centre is one of many locations which they deliver training from across Greater Manchester and beyond.

Afzal Khan is the MP for Manchester Gorton and was first elected in June 2017. He has held a number of frontbench roles for the Labour Party and is currently Shadow Minister for Legal Aid.

Kelly Swindlehurst, Rochdale & Longsight Training Centre Manager – Education and Skills, said:

“We are delighted to have welcomed Afzal Khan MP to our training centre in Longsight. From lifesaving first aid training right through to apprenticeships and adult education, it was great to show Afzal the brilliant work we do here at our Longsight Training Centre. We look forward to working closely with Afzal in the future- and appreciated his kind offer of support.”

Afzal Khan, MP for Manchester Gorton, commented:

“I really appreciate all the hard work carried out by the Growth Company Education and Skills and it was great to visit such a brilliant training centre in my constituency. It was wonderful to talk to young learners and staff about the different opportunities available in the local area. Ensuring more young people can access this provision is vital if we are to have the skilled workforce our economy needs.”

Rebecca Durber, AELP Director of Public Affairs, said:

“The visit was a great opportunity for Afzal to hear about all the work going on at the centre to help Manchester residents to upskill. Afzal was keen to let us know how much he appreciated what the staff and learners are doing – and we plan to work closely with him to ensure more people can take on the skills training they need.”

The Association of Employment and Learning Providers (AELP) is a national membership body, proudly representing around 800 organisations. AELP members support thousands of businesses and millions of learners in England by delivering a wide range of training, vocational learning, and employability programmes.

The Growth Company Education and Skills are a not-for-profit company, established for over 30 years. They offer a huge range of apprenticeships, traineeships and courses for people throughout their working lives. To find out more, visit:

For further information or for interviews please contact Matt Strong, Communications Manager, AELP, on 07920 161685 or

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