£43m expansion at TWI on course for completion by end of this year


Following successful completion of groundworks in preparation for a 25,000 square metre expansion at its South Cambridgeshire laboratories, TWI has announced the appointment of Bedfordshire-based construction company SDC as main contractor for the programme. SDC is on schedule to complete the construction work by the end of 2014.

Gillian Leech, TWI Director of Finance, said: ‘As we reach this important phase in our building schedule, we are keen to ensure continuity in the progress of our high-value programme to deliver new facilities, which will create new business and educational opportunities in the region. We are pleased to appoint SDC as part of our team. ‘

 Earlier this year, TWI welcomed government support from the UK Regional Growth Fund to kick-start the expansion initiative. This, together with funding put forward by the company itself in partnership with Barclays Corporate Banking, Cambridge and under the auspices of the industry-led Structural Integrity Research Foundation, will supply new laboratories and facilities for research and development, with provision of a new centre for postgraduate studies in an industry environment at the centre of the building project – the new National Structural Integrity Research Centre is already accepting applications for PhD and MSc engineering studies.

 The completed facilities, designed with Eric Parry Architects, will cover 36,000 square metres approx. and contain laboratories for the study and performance of materials and the impact of welding and joining techniques as applied in industry.  These will be supported by a full range of information services, including the TWI library – the world’s most comprehensive library of welding and joining related publications – together with meeting and conference rooms, and restaurants.

 Craig Millar, SDC Project Director, said: ‘SDC is proud to be involved with TWI on this exciting new expansion project. In many ways, the technologies and best practices developed and tested by TWI are very relevant to the construction industry, and manifest themselves throughout the construction process. SDC has strong relationships with many education and research institutions and looks forward to successfully delivering this facility for TWI.’

TWI and SDC will host a site ceremony to mark the official launch of the build programme on 7 March 2014, to be led by Andrew Lansley CBE MP, Member of Parliament for South Cambridgeshire and Leader of the House of Commons.

For more information please contact TWI.



The expansion programme at TWI is being driven by support for the build of the new National Structural Integrity Research Centre and an overall increase in demand from industry for the company’s expertise. As a world-renowned centre of excellence for research and technology with expertise in applying engineering, materials, and joining technologies across all industry sectors, the organisation will be ideally placed to expand its products, services and industry programmes and, at the same time, to successfully mentor industry specialists of the future.

 The site development will restore adjacent Abington Hall parkland and establish a new suite of state-of-the-art laboratories linked to TWI’s main building. TWI Training and Examinations Services, TWI Certification Ltd, The Welding Institute (the professional arm of TWI) and TWI Conferencing services will also be housed in the development.

About TWI

TWI is one of the world’s foremost independent research and technology organisations, with expertise in solving problems in all aspects of manufacturing, fabrication and whole-life integrity management technologies.

Established at Abington, Cambridge, UK in 1946 and with facilities across the globe, the company has a first class reputation for service through its teams of internationally respected consultants, scientists, engineers and support staff, whose knowledge and expertise is available to its Members as and when they require.

The company nearly 900 staff, serving 700 Member companies across 4500 sites in 80 countries. TWI also houses a professional institution, The Welding Institute, with a separate membership of 6000 individuals.

About the National Structural Integrity Research Centre (NSIRC)

The National Structural Integrity Research Centre (NSIRC™) is a state-of-the-art postgraduate engineering facility established and managed by structural integrity specialist TWI, working closely with lead academic partner Brunel University, alongside the University of Cambridge and the University of Manchester and leading industrial partners. The Centre also receives long-term industrial commitment from key TWI Industrial Member companies.

NSIRC combines industrially driven academic excellence to address the need for innovation, while delivering a supply of appropriately qualified staff to work across the supply chain and generate very significant economic benefits, both to industry and the UK as a whole. The Centre is funded by:


TWI, Granta Park, Abington, Cambridge CB21 6AL. Tel: 01223 899000.  Fax: 01223 892588.  E-mail: twi@twi.co.uk. Web: www.twi.co.uk 

72/14     28 January 2014 catherine.condie@twi.co.uk



TWI is a world leading research and technology organisation with a focus on materials, engineering and manufacturing.