A HEREFORD college has vowed to improve its campus after being given a cut of £83 million to create extra space as students numbers rise.

The Government announced today (Tuesday) that it was investing £83 million to fund new spaces, including classrooms and science labs, to extend course places across the country.

Hereford Sixth Form College, in Folly Lane, is one of the 39 post-16 education providers set to benefit from the funding.

Peter Cooper, principal at the college with more than 2,000 students, said he was delighted that it would be able to add to its already "excellent" facilities.

He said it was "directly benefit Herefordshire students with additional classroom and performance space together with improved changing areas".

"The college has a superb record of continuing success and this bid recognises the benefits of being able to provide an even better experience for our students – something all our staff endeavour to do," he added.

The Government said demand was expected to increase for post-16 places as more young people continue with education or enter skills training, including recently-launched T-levels – a mixture of "on-the-job" experience and classroom learning, equivalent to three A-levels.

It said the investment would mean schools and colleges could continue to offer places to all young people who wanted them, increasing access to a range of education options, including A-levels, T-levels, apprenticeships or traineeships, and ensure young people could gain the skills needed to progress into a well-paid job.

Minister for Skills Alex Burghart said: “Every young person should have the opportunity to gain the skills they need to reach their goals and go on to have successful careers.

“This investment will boost capacity so we can make sure there is a place for every 16 to 19-year-old, giving them access to the high-quality learning facilities they need to succeed.”

The Government said the investment would would also support its drive to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050, with successful colleges required to show how their projects would contribute to the target.

The funding would help make sure colleges and other providers could build extra capacity to increase their admissions in 2022 or 2023, it added.

Chief executive of the Association of Colleges David Hughes said: “Young people have higher aspirations than ever with growing numbers taking A-levels, T-levels and other courses they’ll need for a successful career or further study.

"These capital funds will help a number of colleges increase the number of places on offer and are a really good investment by the country in its future.”