Redcar & Cleveland College From 1994 Onwards

The Sir William Turner Centre at
Redcar & Cleveland College

The 1988 Education Act encouraged partnerships between colleges and that established in 1994 between Sir William Turner’s 6FC and Cleveland Technical College was one of the first. Michael Clark was its first Principal, with Alan Old the Vice-Principal. The first name of the new college was Cleveland Tertiary College, which was changed to Redcar & Cleveland College under the leadership of Lynne Howe, Principal from 1996 to 2000. She also oversaw the transfer of all 16-19 student education to the Corporation Road site, with the A-level students being housed in a revamped wing, the Sir William Turner Centre. This left the former 6FC building as ‘Connections Campus’ and a base for various courses for adults, such as Teacher Education.

The SWT Foundation, though remaining independent, amended its constitution to take account of this new partnership, and continued to work with the new college. The old school tradition of an annual Remembrance ceremony in fact flourished in the new college. Alan Old became Principal in 2000 and on his retirement in 2005 he was succeeded by Gary Groom. Reflecting the national culture for Further Education colleges, the college’s progress has very much depended on its own initiative and enterprise, so it had to be business–orientated, responding to economic pressures and local and national needs. This generated change. Hence new curriculum areas such as Hair Beauty and Sport were developed, and clear progression routes established to Teesside University via high-powered ‘vocational’ courses in, for example, Engineering, Information Technology and Nursing. Balanced against that, other areas were ended, such as Performing Arts (2006) and traditional A-level courses (2009). The wide variety of short general education courses also disappeared as the new century unfolded, contrasting with the new provision of courses for 14-16 year old school children in vocational and technical areas, and new apprenticeship schemes with local businesses. A new college building was opened in 2008 on the Corporation Road site, with both the old Cleveland Technical College and the SWT 6FC buildings being demolished soon afterwards.

Redcar & Cleveland College Gallery