Hastings-based New Career Skills Limited charged fees of up to £6,000 to retrain mature career-changers for jobs as plumbers, green engineers and electricians.

But now administrators from KPMG have been called in and closed the Southampton training centre that David Cameron visited three years ago to celebrate the firm’s track record for growth and retraining people for second-chance careers in construction.

NCS was founded 15 years ago and in 2008 and was named as one the country’s fastest growing companies.

It expanded to operate out of three centres in Doncaster, Southampton and Watford as well as its headquarters in Hastings.

Administrators from KPMG closed the Southampton training centre with immediate effect on Friday, and 54 of the 83 members of staff employed across the company have been laid off.

Allan Graham, partner at KPMG and joint administrator, said: “In recent months, the company has suffered from a substantial deterioration in its finances, which prompted the directors to appoint administrators.

“While we assess the options for the business, it is our intention to continue to provide training to those students who are already engaged on learning programmes.”

KPMG said training would continue to be provided to all students, including those based at Southampton who will receive training through alternative means.

Three years ago NCS offered courses that enable people to get into the ‘green’ market, providing training on the likes of solar power and heat pumps.

Its training centre at Eastleigh in Southampton was lauded by the local Conservative MP and attracted a visit from then Conservative Leader David Cameron just before the May 2010 election.

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