Cirencester College has officially opened its new Gloucestershire Digital Skills Centre ¬– a £4.48 million investment it says will transform digital education in the county.
GFirst LEP won the money for the project from the government’s ‘Getting Building Fund’ programme in 2020, part of a £11.3 million total it secured for five county projects.
The building was designed by Gloucester architects Roberts Limbrick, built by another city construction firm EG Carter and is part of the county’s masterplan, alongside the likes of the Golden Valley Development, to become the UK’s cyber capital.
College principal Jim Grant was joined by Gloucestershire dignitaries to mark the opening of the building, that will support training for the fast-growing cyber and digital sectors.
Grant said: ‘This is a really important building for us as a college. It is part of the challenge to reintroduce digital skills post 16 after many drop IT related studies in schools.
‘Today, digital skills are a major part of all of our lives, at home and in work, and it is our plan to develop these skills in all of our learners not just those who study IT related courses.’
David Owen, chief executive officer of GFirst, said: ‘We know that digital and cyber will be key drivers in our Gloucestershire economy and this centre is a brilliant opportunity to help train the next talent pool we need to grow this sector.’
The building was officially opened by Brigadier (retired) Sara Sharkey CBE, BSc, MSc, CEng, MIET, who served for 30 years in the British Army, before joining Deloitte as a director in the digital defence practice in 2021.