Heart of Worcestershire College

Heart of Worcestershire College
Type Further Education College
Principal and Governor Stuart Laverick
Location Bromsgrove, Malvern, Redditch and Worcester
United Kingdom
Students Approximately 10,000+ [1]
Gender Mixed
Ages 16+
Website www.howcollege.ac.uk

Heart of Worcestershire College is a general further education college in Worcestershire, England, with campuses at Bromsgrove, Malvern, Redditch and city of Worcester. It was established in August 2014 on the merging of Worcester College of Technology and North East Worcestershire College (commonly abbreviated to NEW College).


North East Worcestershire College

The logo of North East Worcestershire College

North East Worcestershire College (NEW College) was founded in 1988 from the merger of North Worcestershire College and Redditch College of Further Education.[2]

It had campuses at Redditch and Bromsgrove which also offered outreach courses in community and employer premises across Worcestershire. Enrolment was open to anyone aged 16 and over and during the year 2009 -2010 there were around 3000 full-time and 6000 part-time students enrolled at the College. In addition to full and part-time courses the College offered Apprenticeship training in subjects that included Accounting, Business Administration, Child-Care, Construction Trades, Engineering, Hairdressing, Health and Social Care and Motor Vehicle Engineering.

In an Ofsted inspection in 2010 inspectors assessed the College's overall performance as "good, with outstanding features" describing the College as "a lively, modern, safe and friendly place to study". Over a ten-year period investments totalling £40m were made in upgrading existing buildings and substantial new build projects in both Redditch and Bromsgrove. The College was noted for its development of innovative projects with private and public sector partners including Artrix the Bromsgrove Arts Centre and a Harley-Davidson European Training Centre that provided training for Harley-Davidson technicians from the UK, Europe and the Middle East. The College was designated as an LSIS 'Beacon' college.

In 2011, NEW College opened a £3.5m extension which included a new TV studio, Music Centre and Games/Interactive Media studio.[3]

In November 2012, the Foundation Degree Media Moving Image students, created an animated music video featuring the song "All the Broken Toys at Christmas" and toys such as Action Man, Barbie and Scalextric, to raise money for Sense for the Christmas period.[4] At the world premiere of the music video, held at the college on 28 November, two days before its official release, Virginia Von Malachowski, a manager from Sense was present and praised the project.[5][6]

Worcester College of Technology (aka Worcester College or Worcester Tech)

The logo of Worcester College of Technology

The college had its origin in a School of Design which was opened in Pierpoint Street, Worcester, in 1851. In 1894, a School of Science and Art was built in Sansome Walk as part of the Victoria Institute and this served as the headquarters of the College until 1962 when the new buildings in Deansway were occupied. In 1991, the College adopted its current name of Worcester College of Technology.

The college also had two main sites including its Art and Design and Sports departments (including beauty courses) on Barbourne Road, about a mile from the City Centre, and at other locations in the city.

The Victoria Institute, home of the College from 1894 to 1962, photographed in 2009

In 1939 the annual College enrollment was around 600 students, most of whom attended evening classes. This had risen to 15,000 enrolled students in 2006, including 3,000 full-time students. Around 1,000 of the students were studying for Higher Education Qualifications. The college included a Sixth Form Centre, offering A-Levels and other qualifications. No state schools in Worcester had sixth forms, and so it was one of only two Sixth Form Centres in the city.

In 2014 the college received "Good" in their Ofsted inspection, which was a clear improvement from their previous grade of "Satisfactory". The inspection report stated the following: "Students develop very good personal, social and employability skills through clearly developed study programmes, particularly for those aged 16 to 18 year olds, which include a qualification in job search and interview skills. Carefully planned work experience, in real work environments, accurately matches students courses and to their future aspirations."[7]

Barbourne College

It originally opened in 1929 as the third site of the Worcester Secondary School for Girls. In September 1945, it became the City of Worcester Grammar School for Girls and in 1962 it was moved across the city to the site of the current Worcester Sixth Form College. It merged with the School of Science and Art and became an Art and Design College up to 1991 when the college adopted its name to Worcester College of Technology, and the Barbourne College became the Art, Design and Sports department. It ran many courses including Media Production, Graphic Design, Photography, Make-up and Hair and Beauty. It stayed that way until it closed in 2014 and the college was moved to the old Russell and Dorrell building in the city centre as the college changed its name to the Heart of Worcestershire College after it merged with North East Worcestershire College in August 2014. Much of the Barbourne building has been knocked down and turned into an apartment building for old people. The front of the building still has not changed since its opening.[8]

Heart of Worcestershire College

On 1 August 2014, North East Worcestershire College (NEW College) and Worcester College of Technology formally amalgamated. The decision, was agreed by both corporations, and the name was approved by the appointed Skills Minister, Nicholas Boles.[1]

Name of the College

The first name proposed for the merged college was Worcestershire College, but this was rejected by the then Skills Minister, Matthew Hancock. During the consultation phase of the merger Sir Peter Luff, the MP for Mid-Worcestershire, complained that Worcestershire College made it sound like it was the only college in the county and that this would be unfair to South Worcestershire College and Warwickshire College, who both have campuses in Worcestershire.[9][10]



Heart of Worcestershire College, Bromsgrove

The Bromsgrove campus is situated at Slideslow Drive, next door to the Artrix, which is a multi purpose arts centre that provides theatre and cinema screening. This campus contains the newly built media and Harley Davidson centre.

Malvern Campus

The college's "Construction Centre of Excellence" opened in 2006 at Spring Lane in Malvern. The centre teaches construction trades, brickwork and painting and decorating. It is situated at Spring Lane.


The main campus is the Redditch campus situated at Peakman Street, while also the town situates Osprey House located at Albert Street and Alliance House, located on Fishing Line Road


The All Saints Building in 2006

There are several buildings for the college in the city of Worcester. One is the All Saints' Building, where work has been completed on transforming both the library and the Learning Resources Centre into two interactive study centres. The refurbishment has provided students with more space to study. In addition there are separate study centres for travel and tourism, languages and foundation learning which provide specialist resources for the subject areas.

The St. Andrew Building is home to the A level centre, science, I.T., music and performing arts. It contains all the facilities needed to ensure that you are able to practise new skills with the latest equipment and study in an inspiring environment.

The St Wulstan's Building in 2005

The St. Wulstan's Building is the ex-Magistrates Courtroom, that has been transformed into a state of the art wireless enabled Integrated Study Centre allowing students to drop in to study or to be taught in groups. The entrance to the building has also been improved by creating a reception area and installing a three-storey lift.

The Cathedral building has had its foyer and reception areas refurbished to improve their appeal to students. The top floor has been converted to provide a study centre with one of the best views in Worcester. This building is home to engineering courses and music technology.

The Foundation Skills Centre on the edge of Worcester is the location for a variety of practical activities for Public Services students and foundation skills activities.

WCT Solutions is the employer engagement and work based learning department.

The School of Art & Design is situated along the Tything to the north of the City. It has undergone extensive refurbishment to incorporate a new studio space which will be used for fashion shows and exhibitions and a state of the art salon.

Notable former students & staff


External links

Coordinates: 52°20′16″N 2°03′00″W / 52.337647°N 2.050066°W / 52.337647; -2.050066

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