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News: A fond farewell to Maid Mar­i­an Way and Claren­don campuses

Please note: This news story may contain information that is no longer current or up to date.
Maid Marian Way campus
Maid Marian Way campus

With our new­ly built and recent­ly opened City Hub cam­pus, the time has come to say final good­byes to two of our old­est, yet much loved Col­lege cam­pus­es Maid Mar­i­an Way and Claren­don as staff and stu­dents move to their new homes. We couldn’t say good­bye with­out pay­ing our respects and thanks to two cam­pus­es that, between them, have served many tens of thou­sands of stu­dents, over the years, and giv­en our staff many hap­py memories.

Both cam­pus­es have so much indi­vid­ual his­to­ry, both found­ed well before the merg­er of our for­mer col­leges. In fact, Maid Mar­i­an Way, pre­vi­ous­ly The People’s Col­lege, is the old­est Fur­ther Edu­ca­tion col­lege in Eng­land, hav­ing been found­ed in 1847. Clarendon’s his­to­ry, whilst not as long, is also impres­sive. Claren­don Col­lege became an FE col­lege in 1948, with the cur­rent site open­ing in 1960

Whilst both cam­pus­es have indeed come to the end of their nat­ur­al life, so to speak, both sites have been ear­marked for future devel­op­ment. In the inter­im, MMW will be home to a tem­po­rary sixth form cen­tre for Blue­coat School, before being devel­oped as the new gate­way to the cas­tle’ and Claren­don will be devel­oped as a new free school. 

We are proud to be able to offer an improved expe­ri­ence for our stu­dents at our new sites but it does not take away from the many fond mem­o­ries that so many of our staff, for­mer and cur­rent stu­dents, and wider com­mu­ni­ties have of the two campuses. 

Claren­don estab­lished a region­al rep­u­ta­tion for its hair and beau­ty pro­vi­sion, with onsite com­mer­cial salon, its cater­ing and hos­pi­tal­i­ty pro­vi­sion that has trained some of our region’s most renowned chefs, and our per­form­ing arts pro­vi­sion which has nur­tured the tal­ents of act­ing leg­ends and award-win­ning West End performers. 

At Maid Mar­i­an Way we estab­lished a suc­cess­ful and renowned sci­ence depart­ment, launched Focus Cen­tral, our com­mer­cial pho­tog­ra­phy stu­dio and of course our very own life-sized air­craft cab­in.

We spoke to some mem­bers of staff who were keen to share there mem­o­ries and received a flur­ry of fun and sen­ti­men­tal mem­o­ries includ­ing Phil’s below.

Phil Tom­lin­son (Fac­ul­ty Area Man­ag­er — Cater­ing, Trav­el & Tourism) 

Phill start­ed his cater­ing jour­ney as a Claren­don stu­dent study­ing a BTEC Diplo­ma in Hos­pi­tal­i­ty Man­age­ment. He began teach­ing at the Col­lege in 2004. Being a stu­dent at Claren­don was amaz­ing! The set­ting seemed very dif­fer­ent to school – soft­er’ sur­round­ings. I remem­ber think­ing how impos­ing the build­ing was when walk­ing up to the cam­pus for the first time. Claren­don has always had a cer­tain feel’ about it, as a stu­dent; as a teacher and now man­ag­ing my own team. 

Say­ing good­bye to Claren­don is the end of an era, but the start of some­thing new and excit­ing at the City Hub. 

 — Phil Tom­lin­son

If you want to read more fond mem­o­ries then please vis­it our Face­book page and browse the post below to enjoy some great mem­o­ries, or even add your own.

Published on:
  • 11th March 2021 (4:00 PM)
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