£10m college for teenagers

Engineering week at the Spa ,Pupils staff and supporters cheer for the event.Picture Richard Ponter 124208e
Engineering week at the Spa ,Pupils staff and supporters cheer for the event.Picture Richard Ponter 124208e

Pupils from Scarborough and district are set to benefit from a new £10 million college due to open in September 2016.

The new-style University Technical College is one of seven across the UK that have just been given the green light by Government and welcomed by Chancellor George Osborne.

It will serve pupils from 14 to 19 year olds and the college will be built from scratch at Scarborough Business Park, Eastfield, serving Scarborough, Whitby, Ryedale and Bridlington, Driffield, Pocklington and Beverley with a focus on engineering, science, technology, robotics and mathematics-based careers.

There are already 17 UTCs up and running in the country.

Mr Osborne said: “University Technical Colleges are a key part of the Government’s long term economic plan because they help ensure young people have the right skills so they can maximise their potential.

“The new colleges will provide the next generation of British workers with the skills they need to secure the high tech jobs of the future.”

Peter Wilkinson, chairman of Scarborough Business Ambassadors, said that the plans had been met with “tremendous enthusiasm” and support from schools, businesses and council bosses.

Giving his reaction to the UTC plans getting the go-ahead, Mr Wilkinson said: “This is a paradigm shift in our academic history.

“It also represents true partnership working between the public and private sector.”

He praised the work of the team which had put the bid together, which included input from Scarborough Council and businesses such as Unison, Plaxton and McCain.

The first intake of students in September 2016 will be around 150 to 200 - or potentially more - with the capacity to take up to 600 students.

The college will provide a chance for young people to study locally and work for a local business as their career progresses instead of having to move away from the area.

Scarborough Business Ambassadors are now planning for Engineering Week, which takes place in October and will welcome 4,000 students.

Alan Pickering, managing director of Unison Limited, said: “Our plan was to develop the next generation to ensure the UK will continue to lead the world in engineering.”

Scarborough MP Robert Goodwill said: “It is a tremendous opportunity for young people to acquire the skills they need in the global race.”

Richard Smelt, HR Director, McCain Foods (GB), said: “It is vital that we maintain and grow a pipeline of skilled young people in Scarborough and the neighbouring areas.”

Richard Flinton, chief executive of North Yorkshire County Council, said: “Alongside existing colleges it will make a real difference for local young people.”

Prof Ian Pashby, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Engagement at the University of Hull, said: “A UTC in Scarborough will create a unique education opportunity to inspire pupils.”

Jim Dillon, chief executive, Scarborough Borough Council, said: “It will provide young people with exciting careers in engineering, technical and manufacturing.”

Chris Fraser, MD and CEO of Sirius, parent company of York Potash, said: “Securing the UTC is a credit to both public sector partners and its success will be pivotal.”

Alan Atkinson, general manager, Plaxton, said: “This will provide local employers with a tremendous facility where young people can start on a career in engineering.”