A £9 million funding deal has been signed off for the new construction trades training centre at the City College campus in Whitehawk.
Work is expected to start soon at the site in Wilson Avenue, Brighton. Some students and former students are likely to take part in the building work over the coming 18 months.
The total cost of the project is expected to be about £17 million and it is hoped that the building will be completed by the end of next year. It was given planning permission at the start of last month.
The new centre will bring together those learning electrician and plumbing skills, carpentry, painting and decorating, brickwork and plastering and, in the future, sustainable technologies. They are currently taught on three different sites.
The news was shared with staff, students and parents at the further education (FE) college’s City Achievers Awards at the main Pelham Street campus last night (Wednesday 1 July).
Julie Nerney, who chairs the City College board of governors, said: “I am delighted to confirm that the Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership has provided £9 million of funding, enabling us to build a brand new technology centre at our City College East campus in Wilson Avenue.
“This will provide state-of-the-art facilities so that the carpenters, builders, electricians and plumbers of the future are learning in realistic working environments.
“We’re delighted to be able to provide such a vital new educational facility of which the city can be proud.
“It’s crucial that the college caters for the rapidly growing young population in our city, enabling them to gain the vocational skills that employers expect – and the new centre is vital to deliver that ambition.
“There is no doubt that there are huge challenges facing the FE sector and it is even more vital that we work closely with our local community, employers and other organisations to ensure there is strong and sustained partnership working and demonstrate the value and impact that our students can make to the local economy and beyond.”
She also said: “The college has a fundamental role to play in the Brighton, building on its success as one of the country’s top five cities for private sector job creation.”
And she added: “Tonight is about celebrating the success of the students who have been nominated for these prestigious awards.
“With over 7,000 students to choose from, this is no small feat.”
Ms Nerney, who has chaired the governing body for the past 18 months, highlighted the college’s success in recent FE awards.
She also praised the catering students who set up the pop-up restaurant Isaac, in Gloucester Street, Brighton. And she flagged up the contribution made by students as performers and crew during the latest Brighton Festival and Fringe.
She said: “I know I speak for the whole board when I say that this is one of the highlights of the year in our role as governors.”