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£37m college campus makeover

PUBLISHED: 13:58 26 March 2008 | UPDATED: 10:42 03 July 2010

Miles Jermy

THE WOW factor is set to be added to Great Yarmouth College with a multi-million pound makeover.

The Suffolk Road campus is set to be transformed during the next four years as a result of the £37m building programme.

THE WOW factor is set to be added to Great Yarmouth College with a multi-million pound makeover.

The Suffolk Road campus is set to be transformed during the next four years as a result of the £37m building programme.

Plans for the college to take the lead in the development of the West Bank riverside arts centre have been abandoned with the focus now on centring facilities at the present site.

Principal Robin Parkinson said: “I cannot see how we can raise the funding for West Bank, but we would be very supportive of the project.

“It is a great idea but beyond our means and should be a project for the borough rather than the college.

“The college would certainly want to make use of West Bank if it was available for community provision, but it is a side issue.

“These facilities will be completed in four years and we had been talking about West Bank for the last five years and are no nearer achieving it than when we started.”

Work will begin on a new construction department opposite the main building college building and two studios for performing arts students in the next 12 months.

The main college building will be completely redesigned with the addition of new floors and roof by 2012.

It will house the training restaurant, shops, canteen, and hair and beauty suite with access from an atrium style entrance facing Suffolk Road.

Elevated walkways are amongst the proposed features linking the main campus buildings and community development centre for students with special needs.

The building and neighbouring sports hall would be shrouded by a new façade with external glass covered walkways.

Part of the neighbouring Edward Worlledge School playing field would be taken up by the extension.

An all weather play area is planned behind the school following the demolition of an existing college building.

The bulk of funding is expected from the Learning and Skills Council and Higher Education Council and £5m from college reserves.

The college's annual review revealed it achieved a surplus of £118,000 from an income of £13m during the 2006/7 academic year.

Speaking following the publication of the review, principal, Robin Parkinson told the Mercury he was aiming to build on the progress achieved.

He said: “Our Students achieved record results in their courses and had a very successful Ofsted inspection with the college judged to be good overall and outstanding in terms of our financial management.

“We now have more than 250 higher education students with five new degrees coming on stream in September through our membership of University Campus Suffolk.”

Other highlights pinpointed by Mr Parkinson where the college hosting the British Chess Federation national championship an opening of the Alchemy Centre providing business training for budding entrepreneurs.

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