East Coast College to benefit from £1.5 billion college transformation fund


East Coast College has been chosen as one of 16 colleges across England to benefit from the government’s £1.5 billion FE Capital Transformation Fund.

Announced on April 8th by Apprenticeships and Skills Minister Gillian Keegan, the funding has been allocated to transform East Coast’s Great Yarmouth campus in Suffolk Road to create a modern, multi-million pound college campus.

Stuart Rimmer, CEO and Principal of East Coast College, said: “The announcement today is hugely welcomed by East Coast College. We are delighted to be working directly with Department of Education (DfE) to create the most ambitious college building programme ever in the eastern region. It will create a stunning, modern, multimillion pound twenty first century campus in Great Yarmouth. It will be designed by our staff and students and local employers to provide an exciting campus which is inclusive and accelerates learning and development of technical skills at higher levels. This is superb news for the college but also the town and region.”

The FE Capital Transformation Fund was first launched in September 2020 to rebuild and transform college estates and create modern, fit-for-purpose spaces that meet the needs of students and the communities they serve.

The first phase was launched in September 2020, with an initial £200 million allocated to all colleges so they could undertake immediate remedial work to refurbish their buildings.

Following this in January 2021, a second phase was launched where all colleges were invited to bid for additional funding to help upgrade their campuses. Bids are now being considered by DfE with funding expected to be awarded this autumn.

The third and final phase involves the DfE working in partnership with the 16 colleges announced today, to fund projects that will ensure they are excellent places to learn, so more people can gain the skills that they need to secure great jobs. The specific funding due to be allocated to each college is yet to be finalised.

In a statement issued on gov.uk, Gillian Keegan said: “It is fantastic news that we are launching the next phase of this transformation programme, working with a small number of colleges that are some of the most in need of support to upgrade and revitalise their estates.

As we recover from the pandemic, it is vital our colleges continue to be great places to learn with excellent facilities. Our priority is making sure every student receives high quality education and training, no matter where they live, so they can gain the skills they need to progress into work and help the economy to rebuild and grow.”