After her visit to HMP Isle of Wight HRH The Princess Royal arrived at The Isle of Wight College for a light lunch in the College Restaurant where she was she was so impressed by the food she even asked for a takeaway to eat later!
In pouring rain, and escorted by Debbie Lavin (principal), she had a brief tour of the campus taking in the art and design block facilities where she met students studying on Media and Graphic Design courses.
Then Her Royal Highness visited the College’s new sixth form centre (F6rm) where she was met by Ruth Acton (Head of sixth form) and was introduced to students, staff and invited guests. Mrs Acton gave The Princess Royal a tour of the ground floor of the new building where she spoke to students about their studies in the science laboratories, art room, dark room and other classrooms.
The £5m building, completed on time and on budget, which was constructed by Miller Construction Ltd using Island contractors for much of the work, also contains a host of other facilities including high specification Apple Mac suite, PC suite and social areas.
Following this, The Princess Royal officially opened the college’s new sixth form building by performing the official curtain opening to unveil a commemorative plaque. The Princess then took the time to chat to the invited guests to whom she was introduced including High Sheriff Peter Kingston, IW Council Leader David Pugh and Andrew Turner MP.
Before leaving, Cerys Acton (Mrs Acton’s daughter) presented the Princess with a bouquet of flowers.
The building, designed by Pick Everard, located on the campus below the car park will provide 1,800sqm over three storeys and cost approximately £5m. The new centre will provide teaching accommodation for A Level delivery offering science laboratories, art rooms, IT classroom, dark room, general teaching spaces, social space and staff offices. It includes features and concepts for sustainability such as rain water harvesting, biodiversity and the use of green materials, targeting a high BREEAM sustainability rating.
The main contractor was Miller Construction Ltd, who have employed many Island contractors including John Peck Ltd, Clarkes Mechanical Ltd and Paktron Electrical Ltd.
The new F6rm centre offers a choice of 34 different A Level subjects.