Bath College

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Bath College
Bath College logo.svg
Allen Building, Bath College, Bath, Somerset, England.jpg
Allen Building, City Centre campus
Established 1892
Type Further education college
Principal & Chief Executive Laurel Penrose[1]
Location Bath, Somerset
Westfield, Somerset (head office)

Coordinates: 51°22′47″N 2°21′45″W / 51.379722°N 2.3625°W / 51.379722; -2.3625
Local authority Bath and North East Somerset
DfE number 800/8009
DfE URN 130558 Tables
Ofsted Reports
Students Approx 9,000
Gender Mixed
Ages 16+
The Macaulay building

Bath College is a Further Education college in the centre of Bath, Somerset and in Westfield, Somerset, England. It was formed in April 2015 by the merger of City of Bath College and Norton Radstock College.[2][3] The College also offers Higher Education courses and has its own Undergraduate building.


The college was formed in 1892 under the combined names of Bath City Science, Art, and Technical Schools. Its creation arose out of the need to encourage young people to take an interest in the Sciences, and for them to be made aware of the Technical innovations that were occurring at the end of the 19th century. In April 1896 these new Schools occupied the new north extension of the Guildhall, Bath. In 1910 Long Acre, Walcot was taken over as additional accommodation for technical training mainly as a domestic science college. In 1914 the Old Jail at Twerton was converted and opened as Twerton Technical Institute. In 1927 a Junior Bath Technical School opened at Bath Technical College and in 1929 a Junior School of Art, (Bath School of Art and Design) followed with the Junior School of Homecrafts being established in 1933. In 1934 the Domestic Science College moved from Long Acre, Walcot to Brougham Hayes, Lower Oldfield Park. This building originally housed the Somerset Industrial School for Boys in 1832.[4] It was founded to accommodate 180 boys, it had originally been built as a barracks.

These Technical Schools evolved into the new Bath Technical College, which moved from the North Wing of the Guildhall in 1935 to Lower Borough Walls, taking over the buildings that were vacated when the Royal United Hospital moved to the new hospital in Combe Park.[5][6] Avon Street became the latest site of the College, when it was constructed as a new purpose built facility during the 1960s re-development of Bath.

In 2009 City of Bath College had approximately 2,000 full-time and more than 6,000 part-time students.[7]

Merger with Norton Radstock College in 2015[edit]

In late 2014, the college decided to merge with the Norton Radstock College which had had years of financial problems and poor Ofsted reports.[8][9]

In March 2015 the merger was confirmed, and, from April 2015, the merged college has been named Bath College. The Bath campus is named Bath College City Centre, and the former Norton Radstock College campus in Westfield, Somerset is named Bath College Somer Valley.[10][2][3]


The College offers a range of vocational courses covering business and professional courses, computing, IT, media, performing arts, music, catering and hospitality, hairdressing, beauty and complementary therapy, floristry, construction, engineering, carpentry, stonemasonry, sport, travel and tourism, uniformed public services, art and design. In January 2013, Ofsted once again graded the College's Art and Design department as 'outstanding' and the rest of the college was graded as 'good'. Courses are also offered at a range of levels from Entry Level through to Foundation Degrees, HNDs and professional qualifications.[11]

The college has offered the University of Bath's International Foundation Year for over 15 years. This course is a one year intensive programme for students outside the EU to gain entry into the University of Bath. Itt offers routes into all undergraduate programmes at the University with the exception of Architecture to gain entry.

Bath campus[edit]

The MAPA block

The College occupies several buildings. The Allen building (A block) houses the refectory and Shrubbery restaurant which is a training restaurant for catering students. The building is also home to sports and hair and beauty students. On the top floor is the Academy, a training hairdressing and beauty salon. Macaulay building houses the College learning resource centre, the Student Advice Centre, additional learning support departments, the student participation team and the students' union. Herschel building was formerly the sixth form centre, and now houses art, media and the College management team. The Westgate building currently houses Sixth Form classes. The classrooms are also used as exam rooms. John Wood building provides some additional classrooms. The Construction Skills Centre at Bath Trade Park provides state of the art carpentry and stonemasonry workshops, plus classrooms and study areas.

MAPA, designed by Bath practice Aaron Evans Architects, was the newest building until recently. It is home to the College's music and performing arts courses and replaces the Gainsborough building. This building is split into three different sections, performing arts takes around half of the space with its rehearsal room, performance space and sprung-floor mirrored dance studio. Music is next door with three professional recording studios, performance venue, four rehearsal rooms and film editing facilities. College House is mostly staff offices and the International Office.

In early 2011, Kings building, which used to house the gym, was demolished to make way for a new three-storey building called the Roper Building. This building now houses the state of the art Hair and Beauty training academies and the Higher Education Centre.

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ "Meet Our Team". Bath College. Retrieved 8 September 2016. 
  2. ^ a b James Crawley (7 April 2015). "Bath College officially launches with merged campuses in Bath and Westfield". Bath Chronicle. Retrieved 7 April 2015. 
  3. ^ a b "City of Bath College and Norton Radstock College merge". BBC. 7 April 2015. Retrieved 7 April 2015. 
  4. ^ "Somerset Industrial School, Lower Bristol Road 1832". Central Library Collection. Bath in Time. Retrieved 19 November 2010. 
  5. ^ A potted History of the RUH [1] Retrieved 20 August 2009
  6. ^ Medical Heritage [2] Retrieved 20 August 2009
  7. ^ "Bath: City of Bath College". London: The Independent. 6 July 2009. Retrieved 6 September 2009. 
  8. ^ "City of Bath College to merge with Norton Radstock College". City of Bath College. Retrieved 24 December 2014. 
  9. ^ "City of Bath College to merge with Norton Radstock College". Bath Chronicle. 26 November 2014. Retrieved 24 December 2014. 
  10. ^ Nancy Connolly (23 March 2015). "New name for City of Bath College". Bath Chronicle. Retrieved 28 March 2015. 
  11. ^ "Profile of City of Bath College". Universities Retrieved 6 September 2009. 

External links[edit]