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Welsh business flock to event showcasing Swansea arena opportunities

More than 200 Welsh businesses attended an event that revealed the work to be offered as the £120m Swansea Central Phase One project is built.

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Principal contractor Buckingham Group Contracting Ltd, working in collaboration with Swansea Council, wants to maximise the use of local and regional expertise.

The skills that will be required will range from brickwork to the supply of lift, and from fire protection to habitat enhancements.

Full details were available at yesterday's free-entry meet-the-buyer event for all businesses.

The all-day event was held by Buckingham Group and the council in collaboration with industry support body Construction Futures Wales (CFW) which is jointly funded by Welsh Government and CITB (The Construction Industry Training Board) Wales.

Steve Peake, of ITS Construction Personnel's Swansea office, said: "We're here today to get to know this regeneration scheme's principal contractor. Our aim then is to get local construction workers onto this project."

Mike Porter, of Swansea builders and timber merchants Exall and Jones, said: "We want to become one of the suppliers to Swansea Central Phase One. We've been established locally for more than 30 years and we want to be involved in what is a major local initiative. We're an independent family firm - and we're more than capable of supplying big projects such as this."

The meet-the-buyer event took place at the Liberty Stadium. It included discussions between businesses and exhibitors, and one-to-one pre-arranged meetings.

Swansea Central Phase One will bring a 3,500-capacity indoor arena, coastal park, plaza, landmark bridge, car parking, homes and commercial premises created on a key city centre site.

The digital indoor arena and digital plaza elements of Swansea Central Phase One are due to be part-funded by the £1.3 billion Swansea Bay City Deal. An investment programme in 11 transformational projects across South West Wales, the City Deal is projected to give the regional economy a £1.8 billion boost.

Also due to be part-funded by the City Deal are a digital village for tech businesses on Kingsway in Swansea city centre, and a box village and innovation precinct development for start-up companies at the new University of Wales Trinity Saint David campus in SA1.

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