Peterborough Regional College
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|Established||1946 (1944 Evening Institutes)|
|Location||Park Crescent, Peterborough, Cambridgeshire PE1 4DZ|
Engineering firms Peter Brotherhood and Baker Perkins relocated to Peterborough just after 1900 and, by the 1930s, British Thomson-Houston (which became Hotpoint), Newall Engineering and Mitchell Engineering were well established. Peterborough was already an important railway centre providing a great deal of work for the populace, but with all this industry there was no local provision for training.
In 1903, the County Technical School was set up in a small building in Broadway in the city centre with boys studying mathematics, science, technical drawing and some technological subjects. Girls studied a programme for employment in commerce. This was closed in 1926 to save money. Some technical classes did continue but were held as evening classes at Deacon's Grammar School, other schools and the Broadway building.
With the onset of war in 1939, the major engineering firms had to expand to produce munitions and other vital military equipment. The demand for skilled men, and also now for women, escalated but there was nothing in the education or training field to cope with this demand. The industrial expansion continued but it wasn't until 1944, that the Soke of Peterborough Education Committee established Advisory Committees for Engineering and Building and reorganised courses into the Senior Evening Institute of Commercial and Technical Students, Junior Evening Institute and Adult Institute. Classes were held all over the city but, in 1946, temporary premises were erected on land in Garton End Road to provide space for engineering subjects. Pressure from local firms with education and training policies resulted in the Education Committee supporting a plan for Peterborough Technical College, initially at the Garton End Road site.
The separate Adult Education Institute became Peterborough College of Adult Education in 1970, when it moved to its own premises on Brook Street. Since 2010, it has been known as City College Peterborough.
In 1952, the first instalment of the new, purpose built Eastfield site opened. In the following years four more building instalments were made and the developments were the result of an almost unique collaboration between the firms of the area, the county council and the Principal and Governors of the College.
In 1987, The Tech was renamed Peterborough Regional College and in 1993, it became a Corporation under the Further and Higher Education Act 1992, with new branding and plans to deliver degrees validated by leading universities.
Peterborough Regional College currently admits around 3,500 full-time and 12,000 part-time students, encompassing the widest range of courses in the Greater Peterborough area. The first undergraduate programme, offered in conjunction with De Montfort University, was introduced in 1993.
The College offers a range of qualifications including GCSEs, Ordinary and Higher National Diplomas, undergraduate and postgraduate degrees, City & Guilds, NVQs and professional qualifications. The College also offers courses for international students, including IELTS English language proficiency testing.
Computing courses for those trying to get back into employment or wishing to update skills, together with a range of literacy and numeracy classes, were previously run from the Corn Exchange in the city centre. The College now provides similar courses at the City Learning Centre. The Media Centre also moved from Hightrees, adjacent to the main site on Eastfield Road, to purpose-built premises on Broadway with industry standard facilities.
In 2006, Peterborough Regional College began talks with Anglia Ruskin University on developing a new university campus for the city. The college and the university then completed the legal contracts for the creation of a new joint venture company at a special signing ceremony at the college. The formation marked the culmination of legal negotiations and securing of funds required to build the new higher education centre. The joint venture company, limited by guarantee, is managed by an equal number of directors from both partner institutions who are responsible for the academic and operational running of the new centre. The new University Centre Peterborough opened in 2009 and now houses most of the higher education provision previously offered by the college.
Notable people educated at Peterborough Regional College include:
- RAF topgun and Red Arrows trainer selected to help Peterborough Regional College reach new heights Peterborough Telegraph, 22 April 2015
- New £110 Million College Building for Peterborough Regional College Peterborough Regional College (retrieved 15 February 2009)
- How Peterborough Regional College will look Peterborough Evening Telegraph, 5 December 2008
- McIntyre, J.A. The Story of Peterborough Technical College 1952 – 1977
- About us: A brief history Peterborough College of Adult Education (retrieved 18 August 2007)
- Official Opening of the Fifth Instalment Peterborough Technical College, Huntingdon and Peterborough County Council, 10 July 1969
- Peterborough Regional College – 60 years in business Peterborough Regional College (retrieved 18 August 2007)
- School and College Achievement and Attainment Tables 2005 Department for Education and Skills (retrieved 18 August 2007)
- City council buys Peterborough Corn Exchange Peterborough City Council, Ref. 07/07/ML, 5 July 2007
- Major step towards university for Peterborough Anglia Ruskin University, 22 February 2006
- New university plan moves closer BBC News, 21 November 2006 11:10 GMT
- £10 million boost for university facility in Peterborough Anglia Ruskin University, 11 December 2006
- Legal deal signed and sealed facilitates the 'emergence' of new University Centre in Peterborough Anglia Ruskin University, 3 April 2007
- Old, David Video: Students can now take university route in city Peterborough Evening Telegraph, 16 August 2007
- Gray, Hannah Plans for University College Peterborough take shape Peterborough Evening Telegraph, 3 September 2008