The AMRICC Centre
Jo Gideon MP with Connor Ayre, a degree apprentice at The AMRICC Centre.

Pioneering AMRICC Centre’s official launch positions region at centre of multi-billion-pound advanced ceramics sector 

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The critical role a world-first Staffordshire-based research facility will play in the future of advanced ceramics was set out at its official launch. 

The opening of The AMRICC Centre showcased how it is positioning the Midlands region at the centre of the multi-billion-pound global sector. 

Leaders across industry, academia and the public sector toured the Stone Business Park site after Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for the UK Ceramics Industry, Jo Gideon MP, cut the ribbon and officially opened the £10 million research centre. 

A global first, The AMRICC Centre operates under an open-access format, translating materials, processes, and technologies into real-world products and solutions. This is done by enabling product and process development to be carried out at an industrially relevant scale. 

The AMRICC Centre is the physical outcome from the Midlands Industrial Ceramics Group’s (MICG) £18.27 million four-year research programme, funded by Government under UK Research and Innovation’s flagship Strength in Places Fund in 2021. 

Pictured at the launch are, left to right, Chris Plant, Deputy Chief Executive of Staffordshire Chambers of Commerce; Rob Flello, CEO of Ceramics UK; Mark Dudson and Tom Oakes of Lucideon; Jo Gideon MP and Martin Jones, Vice-Chancellor of Staffordshire University.  

Overall financial sponsor Lucideon, a founding partner of the MICG, has championed the Centre, investing millions of pounds and providing access to industry expertise. 

Jo Gideon, MP for Stoke-on-Trent Central, said: “The AMRICC Centre is a fantastic facility, which will drive innovation in ceramics and advanced ceramics up to the next level. 

“Advanced ceramics offer many opportunities for UK plc, and The AMRICC Centre is a brilliant addition for the sector.  

“It is a world-beating facility for research and development and I am proud that it is in Staffordshire.” 

Dr Cathryn Hickey, CEO of The AMRICC Centre.

CEO of The AMRICC Centre, Dr Cathryn Hickey, said: “Forecasts for the value of advanced ceramics industry in 2023 were £143 billion, and The AMRICC Centre places the Midlands region, an area long associated with ceramics, in a strong position to play a key role in this highly-valued sector. 

“Prior to the official launch, we have been working on a series of projects which have been very well received in industry, and give an insight to the potential of the Centre going forward.” 

Staffordshire Chambers of Commerce Deputy Chief Executive Chris Plant, who attended the launch, said: “Staffordshire has a long and proud history in ceramics. It’s fantastic that this legacy is being honored, evolved and continued as part of this project.”

The AMRICC Centre includes an equipment suite featuring over 350 pieces of high-value technology, collectively offering unique capabilities for users – coupled with the expertise of scientists, engineers, data scientists, and computational modellers to turn innovative ideas into market-ready technologies.

Nigel Pye

Experienced journalist with a 30-year career in the newspaper and PR industry and a proven record for breaking stories for the national and international press. Nigel is the Editor of Daily Focus and Head of Creative at i-creation. Other work includes scriptwriting, magazine and video production, crisis communications and TV and radio broadcasts.

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