Burnley Council agree sale of land to allow £12.5M college expansion that will create up to 150 jobs
The ambitious project, which is expected to create up to 150 new jobs and attract 2,000
extra students, was given the green light at the council's development control committee last month.
The proposed sale of council-owned land off Holme Road will allow the development of new educational facilities to teach engineering, construction, digital and health sciences and other topics, working in conjunction with local
The development will also include a five-a-side pitch, multi-use games area and outdoors gym that will be managed by the council and available to the public free of charge.
Coun. Sue Graham, the council’s executive member for resources and performance management, said: “This is an exciting project that will enable a major expansion of Burnley College and help meet the demands of local
businesses for a highly trained workforce.
“The lack of digital expertise and training in particular represents a major challenge for engineering and advanced manufacturing companies in our borough and the college has built close links with employers which it wants to
"This scheme will allow it to achieve that. It will attract in more young people to study a wide range of subjects and help towards wider work to transform Burnley into a university town.
"There will be knock-on positive benefits for town centre businesses and the borough as a whole.”
Karen Buchanan, principal of Burnley College said the college was proud to play 'an integral role at the very heart of the business community' and she was looking forward to expanding this involvement still further through the new development.
Ms Buchanan said: “We are committed to ensuring that all learners, whatever their age, background or aspirations, have the opportunity to acquire the vital skills and knowledge that will help them achieve their goals and boost business.
“From the latest digital skills to net-zero technology, we are committed to offering targeted training to future-proof business and create a dynamic and resilient workforce – all within a campus which is a real asset to the community for generations to come.”
A report will go to the council’s scrutiny committee next week and then to its executive on Monday, February 14th, for a final decision.
MP Antony Higginbotham hailed the news that Burnley College had been given the green light for a £12.5M expansion as 'an exciting development for Burnley- one which will secure the borough’s status as a centre of excellence for low carbon training and technology development for years to come.'
But the latest news about the sale of the land comes as a bitter blow to protestors, who have campaigned to stop the expansion from going ahead on what they describe as 'cherished' green space that has been used for generations.
Members of the 'Save Clifton Street and Stoneyholme Rec' have vowed to appeal against the decision and have always maintained that they are not against the idea of expanding Burnley College but they don't believe it should be at the cost of 'much used and valued green space.'
And group spokesman Kelly Decruz revealed today they have put in for a judicial review claim which is a challenge made against the decision of the planning authority to grant planning permission.
Kelly said: "None of us are happy about it and can't believe they have agreed to the sale of the land without even consulting the general public."
Councillors voted 10 to two in favour of the expansion to the college's Princess Way campus that will see the new 20,450 square foot industrial hub and three educational buildings on six acres of land along the River Calder.
The expansion site is adjacent to the college’s current campus on Princess Way, sitting just to the north of the car park.