Proposed Glass Futures Centre of Excellence in St Helens

Glass Futures’ Global Centre of Excellence, the proposed research, development and training facility, is already delivering on employment commitments having successfully recruited for several key positions.

The recent recruitment drive has seen 12 members of staff and secondees appointed in key managerial roles – including a Technical Director along with General, Innovation and Partnerships and Finance Managers, with more positions ready to open up as part of the Phase Two jobs’ drive that will continue well in to 2021 and beyond.

The most recent recruits are all working remotely but there is hope that a temporary Head Office can be established in St Helens’ in the near future*, acting as the operational HQ to spearhead the planned 158,000 sq. ft facility on the 14-acre site, adjacent to St Helens’ Rugby League ‘Totally Wicked’ stadium.

The facility will be centred around a 30 tonne/day low carbon demonstration furnace creating the world’s first openly accessible, multi-disciplinary glass melting facility with capability for research and development trials to demonstrate new manufacturing processes, products and approaches to improve efficiencies whilst decarbonising the glass industry and providing a world class training facility for the current and future workforce.


In total, the St Helens’ site is expected to create around 50 skilled jobs directly, along with hundreds of indirect employment opportunities.

Said Glass Futures’ General Manager Aston Fuller: “We hope to be recruiting a further five full-time members of staff to join us early in 2021 and these will be a variety of key roles around Industry 4.0, project engineering business development, media and marketing.

“The team are all working extremely well together at the moment, albeit remotely, and there is real excitement and a team spirit already apparent as we take rapid steps towards establishing the Glass Futures’ Centre of Excellence.

He added: “Glass Futures will be a 24/7 operations and we will need skilled engineers from all disciplines, along with a diverse range of skilled people to make up the operational support team. With innovation also being a key part of the Centre’s offering, there will be a huge emphasis on training and apprenticeship opportunities, so we will be looking to recruit experienced industry hands to train and inspire the next generation of leaders for the global glass industry.”

Glass Futures is a not-for-profit membership organisation with a Board comprising of senior leaders from the global glass industry, its supply chain and academia. The facility will enable highly diverse apprenticeships and provide a world beating environment to up-skill workers across the total glass supply chain.

As the multi-agency work continues to bring the Glass Futures’ site forward, the recruitment process for current and future roles is moving ahead and prospective candidates can register their interest, confidentially, by emailing a covering letter and C.V to: [email protected].

Aston concluded: “We established the core of the Glass Futures’ team during the lockdown so the current working practice isn’t the “new norm” for us, it’s just the norm. It’s allowed us to start from a position of individual strengths and build a resilient team that’s already demonstrating the right attitude and culture that will make Glass Futures a truly global facility.”