Devon college, Petroc, is to receive £900,000 as part of a £200 million Government funding boost for further education colleges to ‘build back better’ and kick-start work to upgrade their buildings and estates.
The funding marks the latest step in the Government’s drive to overhaul further education and deliver the skilled workforce employers and the economy need, and that will help level up skills and opportunities for more people across the country.
Petroc have identified buildings at their Barnstaple campus that will benefit from the funding with an upgrade.
Commenting on the announcement, Bill Blythe, Petroc Vice-Principal (Finance and Resources), said:
“Our current thinking is a major project to renovate a large and very poor condition building at the heart of the Barnstaple campus.
“This project will provide much-improved learning environments as well as reducing our carbon footprint through greater thermal efficiency.
“The project is based around the replacement of dilapidated curtain walling, including the installation of double-glazed window units to replace ageing and failing single-glazed windows.”
Welcoming the funding, North Devon MP, Selaine Saxby said:
“This funding is great news for Petroc and young people across North Devon.
“The campus in Barnstaple is at the heart of North Devon’s further education network and leads the way in providing our next generation with the support they need to learn new skills and embark on their careers or move on to university.
“As they support our young people, so must Government support our FE colleges and this funding will do just that, providing modernised infrastructure to ensure that future students and apprentices learn and train in world-leading environments.”
Education Secretary, Gavin Williamson said:
“We want to build a world class further education system which delivers for the whole nation, and a key part of this is ensuring colleges are fit for the future - with better facilities and brand-new buildings.
“It is brilliant news that more than 180 colleges will receive a share of £200 million so they can start immediate work to renovate buildings and facilities, with further funding being invested over the next 5 years.
“We want all students to continue to receive high-quality education and training, no matter where they grow up or what college they go to. Now more than ever, it is vital that colleges can support their students to gain the skills they need to progress and help the economy to recover and grow.”
Image: Selaine met with Petroc Principal Sean Mackney in February