A principal designate has been appointed at a University Technical College (UTC) in Devon that is set to open its doors in September next year.

Ian Crews, currently vice principal of Cornwall’s Bodmin College Academy, will take up the post at South Devon UTC, in Newton Abbot, which specialises in engineering, water and the environment, from September.

The 51-year-old said: “It will be a privilege to lead the exciting development and setting up of South Devon UTC. I am really looking forward to working with the young people of South Devon to encourage them along a science or engineering-based pathway into a rewarding career.”

Professor Janice Kay, deputy vice chancellor at the University of Exeter and chair of the South Devon UTC board of directors, said: “Throughout the application process, I was extremely impressed by Ian’s wealth of knowledge, experience and expertise, both as a technician and an educator.”

Meanwhile, Lantra — the sector skills council for land-based and environmental industries and an awarding organisation — has appointed Marcus Potter as its new chief executive.

He started on May 27 having previously been executive director of market development with the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).

Mr Potter said: “I am delighted to be joining Lantra at this important time.

“While the funding environment has become more challenging, I’m convinced that the need is greater than ever for Lantra’s expertise and services.

“I believe the organisation’s future lies in strong collaboration with partners and in making sure that we understand our customers and stay relevant to their requirements.

“We are passionate about equipping land-based businesses with the skills they need to support innovation, reduce risk and raise productivity.

“It’s important that this sector sees investment in skills not as a cost of compliance but as having real bottom-line benefit.”

Chair Valerie Owen said: “We are extremely happy to welcome Marcus to the organisation.

“He brings extensive experience of developing collaborative partnerships with stakeholders and a track record of identifying market opportunities and launching new business initiatives which meet customer needs. We wish him all the best, and look forward to working with him over the coming years.”

Mr Potter replaced Peter Martin who stepped down last October after 12 years as chief executive before Robert Tabor acted as interim chief executive.

Mr Martin said: “It has been a pleasure to work with a highly committed team of people here at Lantra over the past 12 years.

“Together we have achieved much. Agriculture and the wider land-based industries have an exciting future, and I am sure that Lantra will share in their success.”

If you want to let us know of any new faces at the top of your college, training provider or awarding organisation please let us know by emailing news@feweek.co.uk

Main pic: From left: Ian Crews, Marcus Potter and Peter Martin