A Message from Lord Pickles and Lord Blunkett, followed by Cgtech's best practice article

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from Cgtech is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

Blunkett signature Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Pickles signature Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles

Highlighting best practice
Tony Shrewsbury, managing
director, CGTech UK Limited
VERICUT simulation of an
advanced CNC machine tool
As a key part of a successful global business, Brighton-
based CGTech UK Limited provides sales support and
technical services for the company’s globally renowned
independent computer numerical control (CNC) simulation
and optimisation software, VERICUT. Responsibility for the
UK operation, which includes the Middle East, Scandinavia,
Eastern Europe and Africa, falls under the auspices of managing
director Tony Shrewsbury. Here he explains the raison d’être for
VERICUT, discusses the “Right first time: Fast first time” ethos
of CGTech and shares the company’s thoughts for the future.
Most of us live in an environment that has been heavily engineered, from our
housing and social infrastructure to our transport systems and communication
networks. At some stage every object that makes our lives more comfortable or
convenient has been manufactured using a variety of processes. One of these crucial
processes involves “machining” – effectively cutting material parts, predominantly
metal, to the correct shape using CNC machine tools driven by a program often
produced using a CAD/CAM package. This is where VERICUT software comes in.
VERICUT software
The software is used to simulate machining operations to detect errors, potential
collisions or areas of inefficiency. VERICUT enables manufacturing companies to
correct errors before the program is ever loaded on the CNC machine, which also
eliminates time-consuming manual prove-outs. The software also optimises the NC
program to remove or minimise inefficiencies.
»Managing director:
»Established in 1988
»Based in Brighton, East Sussex
»Services: Sales support and
technical services for globally
renowned independent CNC
simulation and optimisation
»No. of employees: 15
»Over 1,000 clients
CGTech UK Limited
When a
company invests
they are not just
buying a
program; they
are teaming up
with a
partner with the
largest group of
CNC machining
experts in the
When a company invests in VERICUT,
they are not just buying a software
program; they are teaming up with a
manufacturing partner with the largest
group of CNC machining experts in
the world. For over 30 years VERICUT
has been protecting the significant
investments required by manufacturing
companies to make these parts and
driving up the machining efficiency
– allowing them to make more parts
in less time. The drive for efficiency
gains is seen in every industry sector,
but most noticeably within the
The UK has the world’s second largest
aerospace industry cluster, and every
aircraft producer is looking to increase
its build rate as operators want a
more fuel-efficient fleet with increased
passenger comfort and long-term
reliability. Those manufacturers in the
supply chains that feed the aircraft
builders are under constant delivery
pressures, and are rated by how
well they perform against a planned
schedule – known in the industry as
OTIF (on time; in full).
One recent development that is
helping is our FORCE module. It excels
in difficult-to-machine materials and
especially with complex parts. Founded
on basic engineering principles, it is easy
to set up and incredibly easy touse.
Historically, aerospace companies were
among the first to see the benefits of
using VERICUT to protect not just the
machine but also the parts, some of
which are cut from materials that are
not easily replaced if any accidental
damage occurs. Even today around
half of our business comes from the
aerospace sector, and that’s true for
all the countries that fall under the
purview of the UK office.
CGTech expansion
We have been expanding year-on-
year and now have around 1,000
customers in the UK and the countries
we export to. For most of the overseas
territories a trusted and established
reseller network has been set up to
provide local technical support and
industry-specific services. The reseller
network is expanding further as more
manufacturing companies come to
understand the benefits of using
VERICUT, a message we continually
promote at major national and
international exhibitions.
Here in the UK we now have two
dedicated sales engineers, and we
saw our turnover increase from £3.3
million in 2016 to £4.4 million in 2017.
We have also expanded our technical
support team and it will continue to
grow to meet customers’ needs. VERICUT FORCE module
excels in difficult-to-
machine materials and
complex parts
Highlighting best practice
Of course, as with other established
software packages, the version of
VERICUT used by manufacturers today
is very different to the original platform
– although the ethos remains the same.
The ongoing development of VERICUT
is heavily structured upon industry
feedback gained from direct customer
contact and user group events we
organise across the globe. These are
two-way seminars that allow customers
to find out what we are planning for
the next version of the software and
where they can put forward requests
and suggestions for improvements. It
allows us to create a development road
map to match their requirements.
We are also actively participating
in the government’s UK Catapult
centres, a network of world-leading
centres designed to transform the UK’s
capability for innovation in specific
areas and help drive future economic
growth. CGTech has membership of
four of the centres focused on high
value manufacturing: the Advanced
Manufacturing Research Centre
(AMRC) in Sheffield, the Manufacturing
Technology Centre (MTC) in Coventry,
the Advanced Forming Research Centre
(AFRC) in Strathclyde and the National
Composites Centre (NCC) in Bristol.
Each of these centres bring together
the latest concepts from academia
and industry, providing us with
opportunities to meet the challenges
faced by next-generation thinking.
From an industry viewpoint we believe
there will be a significant increase in
the use of composite material as every
industry sector looks to make parts
lighter and stronger. There are VERICUT
modules developed to support the
exciting developments in this sector,
as well as the recent developments
around “additive manufacturing” and
hybrid machines that combine the
ability to add material and cut it away
to produce complex structures.
Our development team have also
been working on augmented reality
applications, where manufacturers
would be able to use VERICUT on a
mobile device to have an augmented
view of a physical machine to ensure
it has been set up correctly and that
it will perform as anticipated. This
technology removes the disconnect
that can occur between the CAD/CAM
team generating the program and the
production team running the machines.
We also see a wider adoption of the
“digital-twin” philosophy where every
item in the physical world is duplicated
in the virtual one. Leading aerospace
companies have been doing this for
a number of years to promote safe
working practices across their global
facilities. VERICUT is a vital platform
for this concept and we see its benefits
becoming widely accepted across all
industry sectors.
Industries are making
parts lighter and
stronger with composite
material usage
Hybrid machines support
additive manufacturing,
producing complex
Right first
time: Fast first

This article was sponsored by Cgtech. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it. The publication in which this article originally appeared contained the following foreword from Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng.

Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review

By Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng

This year’s Parliamentary Review reflects on a tumultuous and extraordinary year, globally and nationally. As well as being an MP, I am a keen student of history, and I am conscious that 2020 would mark the end of an era. It will be remembered as the year in which we concluded Brexit negotiations and finally left the European Union. Above all, it will be remembered as the year of Covid-19.

In our fight against the pandemic, I am delighted that our vaccination programme is beginning to turn the tide – and I pay tribute to the British businesses, scientists and all those who have helped us to achieve this. But the virus has dealt enormous damage, and we now have a duty to rebuild our economy.

We must ensure that businesses are protected. We have made more than £350 billion available to that end, with grants, business rates relief and our furlough scheme supporting more than 11 million people and jobs in every corner of the country, maintaining livelihoods while easing the pressure on employers. The next step is to work with business to build back better and greener, putting the net zero carbon challenge at the heart of our recovery. This is a complex undertaking, but one which I hope will be recognised as a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Through the prime minister’s ten point plan for a green industrial revolution, we can level up every region of the UK, supporting 250,000 green jobs while we accelerate our progress towards net zero carbon emissions.

With our commitment to raise R&D spending to 2.4% of GDP and the creation of the Advanced Research & Invention Agency, we are empowering our fantastic researchers to take on groundbreaking research, delivering funding with flexibility and speed. With this approach, innovators will be able to work with our traditional industrial heartlands to explore new technologies, and design and manufacture the products on which the future will be built – ready for export around the globe.

And I believe trade will flourish. We are a leading nation in the fight against climate change. As the host of COP26 this year, we have an incredible opportunity to market our low-carbon products and expertise. Our departure from the EU gives us the chance to be a champion of truly global free trade; we have already signed trade deals with more than 60 countries around the world.

As we turn the page and leave 2020 behind, I am excited about the new chapter which Britain is now writing for itself, and for the opportunities which lie ahead of us.
Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng
Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy