South West College (SWC) is lead partner in the CREST project. It currently has a five campus college spread over counties Tyrone and Fermanagh. SWC has 17,500 student enrolments, has a staffing complement of some 900 staff, a budget of £37M and is involved in a number of European projects. In addition the College has direct links to business and academia, which ensures that it is ideally placed to assist with the development of a sustainable business community within Northern Ireland and the Border Counties.
CREST at South West College has employed a number of technical staff who specialise in renewable energy and sustainable technologies to undertake client projects. The people employed on the CREST project are Tim Stokes as programme manager along with Gemma Keenan as R&D Coordinator and Barry McCarron and Judith Wilson as R&D technicians.
CREST has a new purpose-built facility at the Enniskillen Technology and Skills Centre Campus and provides access to prototyping support, advanced Research and Development laboratories and state-of-the-art demonstration and testing facilities. The facility has a ‘Passive Pavillion’ which is one of Northern Ireland’s first commercially accredited PassiveHaus building which also meets BREEAM ‘excellent’. The Pavilion area of CREST will provide demonstration and testing facilities to showcase innovative products and processes and the use of renewable technologies in construction. The Pavilion will be designed to engage industry through experiencing (seeing, touching) new sustainable technologies and materials allowing for a deeper engagement in and understanding of the techniques on display. The CREST ‘Hub’ will form the central office area within the CREST centre and will comprise modern office and meeting space where the CREST team will meet with companies to discuss their requirements and outline the services available. The final space of CREST is a ‘R&D lab’ where a range of advanced prototyping, testing and development facilities will be available to enable staff at the centre to support companies with practical hands-on new product development.