Staff and students at Stoke on Trent College of Further Education are celebrating the realisation of years of planning as the first foundations are laid for the new £11m Centre of Vocational Excellence for Health and Social Care on the college’s Cauldon campus. This £11m building is the latest stage in the £120m rebuild of the Cauldon and Burslem campuses.
The new state-of-the-art building fronts onto the small park in Shelton and part of the new build project will see the total restoration of the park’s historic Victorian terrace. In addition, the college has taken over responsibility for the maintenance and security of the park, providing local residents and students alike with a safe and pleasant environment in which to relax.
Graham Moore OBE, Principal, Stoke on Trent College, enthused: “This day has been a long time coming and I am delighted for the learning community in Stoke on Trent that our vision of providing world class learning facilities, reaping dividends for local learners and the local and regional economy, is now a reality.
“Following the success of the Building Technology Centre at Burslem this new state-of-the-art building will provide top class facilities for our Health, Care, Hair & Beauty and Catering students. Sympathetically set in a parkside location, the new building will spotlight the growing role that service sector employment now plays in the prosperity of the region.”
Contractors for the prestigious new build project are Birmingham-based Moss Construction, part of the Kier Group. Brian Clarke, Director, Moss Construction, says: “Stoke on Trent College has grasped its opportunity to create a landmark building in the city and provide future students with a campus that is fit for learning in the 21st century.
“The building benefits from advanced design that has sustainability at its heart, whilst at the same time offering an inspiring environment in which to study. It is the college’s ultimate ambition to open up the park and reconnect the small park and the canal that runs at the rear of the Cauldon site, creating a truly innovative and thoroughly modern campus.”
The Cauldon campus will form part of the city’s new ‘University Quarter’, sharing facilities with Staffordshire University and the City of Stoke on Trent Sixth Form College. Funding for the new development is primarily from the Learning and Skills Council.
Shazad Khan, President of the Student Union said: “There’s a lot going on at the moment – our Student Union has been refurbished to a really high standard and seeing this new building taking off makes me very proud to be Student Union president at the college this year. These excellent new facilities are really going to help keep students motivated and encourage even more people to join us and get them equipped for the latest career opportunities.
Patrick Wenger, Chair of the Board of Governors, Stoke on Trent College, says: “We are focusing on supporting key areas of the local and regional economy by delivering high quality skills training in health & social care, construction and business & professional services. This is our next step forward following investment at our Burslem site – and it is a milestone to be celebrated.”
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