Demand prompts early opening of Thurrock Learning Campus

Thurrock Learning Campus has enrolled its first batch of students earlier than anticipated because of interest generated by the start of construction just three months ago.

Courses aimed at 16 to19-year-olds and adults in art and design, media, retail and business, digital applications and music technology will start from temporary facilities this month.

Jan Hodges, principal and chief executive of lead partner South East Essex College, said: “This is an amazing achievement for all of our partners. Only last Summer, we were seeking a location for the campus; a few weeks later we started receiving applications; in the Autumn the building was under construction and now we are already opening our doors and opening up new opportunities to young people and adults across Thurrock.”

Thurrock Council's cabinet member for Children's Services, Sue MacPherson, said: "Raising aspirations and expectations of Thurrock residents is an integral part of our policy and this development is a key part of that."

The opening of what will ultimately be a £4.4 million, says Tom Gardiner, director of delivery, Thurrock Thames Gateway Development Corporation, “marks the beginning of an exciting project that will culminate in the development of a purpose built Learning Campus in Grays Town Centre, currently scheduled to open in 2012.”