BARONESS Jenny Randerson praised Glyndwr University for its “mind-blowing” fusion of academia and industry during a visit to its pioneering technology centre in St Asaph.
The Liberal Democrats’ Wales Office Junior Minister, with responsibility for education, paid tribute to the Wrexham-based institution for leading the way in high technology and precision engineering.
Baroness Randerson witnessed the synergy between education and business on a tour of the National Facility for Ultra Precision Surfaces, where she discussed the ESO project and polishing of mirrors for the £900million European-Extremely Large Telescope with Professor David Walker and project manager Tony Fox-Leonard.
During a walk around the Denbighshire site with Glyndwr University Vice Chancellor, Professor Michael Scott, the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Wales also met with Dr Phil Harris, managing director of Glyndwr Innovations, which was again named among the top companies in Wales at the recent Fast Growth 50 Awards.
Baroness Randerson said: “It’s been a fascinating tour around the building, and I think what you’re doing here is at the edge of science and precision - it is of international significance. Importantly, it’s not just cutting edge, it’s also technology that can be applied to solve the world’s problems and puts Wales at the forefront of scientific development, with close links to business as well.
“I think this site is an example of the best that our universities in Wales can produce – it really is quite stunning.”
Dr Harris thanked Baroness Randerson for visiting the centre, and said: “We have some of the UK’s finest companies under one roof, with commercial and collaborative partners all over the world.
“We and the businesses based here at the OpTIC Centre are leading the way in the fields of technology and industry; she was very complimentary about the work we’re doing in North Wales.”
Baroness Randerson later spent time with businesses based in the incubation units at the OpTIC Centre, including View Holographics and Diamond Drum Turning, and at the Centre for Solar Energy Research.