Two adult education colleges have merged to become one of the largest providers of adult learning in the capital.
Morley College and Kensington and Chelsea College have joined together in a bid to provide more courses and serve more students.
Morley College London, established in 1889, is one of the country’s oldest and largest specialist providers of adult education.
Its merger with Kensington and Chelsea College has received £32 million of investment from the Department for Education, the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government and the Greater London Authority.
As part of the merger the North Kensington Centre, which serves the local community affected by the tragedy of the Grenfell Tower fire, will undergo major refurbishment and be protected as a community hub for education and skills.
As a merged college, Morley will provide a sustainable and affordable programme of lifelong learning across three centres – North Kensington, Chelsea and Waterloo – serving more than 17,000 students drawn from all boroughs of London and beyond.
The merged college said will invest in curriculum innovation and learning environments, with increased choices at all levels of study, including progression to advanced and higher study.
With learning linked to skills needs and jobs growth in the creative industries, the Chelsea Centre will further expand its established profile in fashion and the visual arts.
Following renovation, a broad-based range of learning opportunities will be established at the North Kensington Centre aligned to local learning needs featuring enterprise, health and science, tourism, social sciences and IT.
Chairman of governors at Morley College London, Dr Stuart Edwards, said: “We are committed to lifelong community-based learning and are proud to have served our communities for over 130 years.
“This significant public investment into education and skills will provide enhanced learning opportunities for Londoners.”
“Working together, with our shared values, we will meet the learning needs of a growing number of students within the communities that we serve.”
A Government spokesman said: “This merger will provide local communities, including those tragically affected by the Grenfell Tower fire, with the opportunity to access high quality education and training.
“The investment we are making will support our drive to level up skills and opportunity so more people can progress and we look forward to hearing more about Morley College’s future plans.”
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