Next phase of Ely College’s multi-million pound make over approved

An artist's impression of how the revamped college could look

An artist's impression of how the revamped college could look - Credit: Archant

ELY College’s latest funding bid for the next part of its re-development plan was approved by the Government this week.

The Education Funding Agency awarded Ely College more than £2.7 million to add to a further £1.5million being put forward by Cambridgeshire County Council towards the second phase of the project.

Further funds will also be available for subsequent phases of the college’s 2020 vision, which will enable the college to expand and cater for Ely’s growing population.

Forecasts indicate that the city will need an additional 300 secondary school places by 2020, including some from Littleport who will need a place before the new Littleport secondary school opens in September 2017.

Work on the project - which will provide a number of new classrooms, a performing arts centre/hall, post-16 facilities and a library, along with much needed new dining facilities - will start almost immediately, saving public funds by using the contractors already on site building the new science centre.

The new building will also form the new main entrance to the college in Downham Road, and will therefore become the new face of the school.

Principal Catherine Jenkinson-Dix, said: “The award from the EFA and the match funding from our partners at the local authority mean that we can continue our transformation of the school site into a 21st century learning environment which meets the needs of the growing community.

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“It also means we can press on with our plans to update the curriculum on offer to Ely’s young people here, and to reorganize the school into a number of Learning Communities.”

The Education Funding Agency received more than 2,000 bids from nearly 1,400 schools for this 2013-14 funding round, totalling over £1.1 billion, far in excess of the £325 million they had available for successful projects.