£10m agri college development to shape future of farming in north east Wales
REVOLUTIONARY new education and commercial buildings form part of a £10m rural college redevelopment.
Backed with more than £5.9m from the Welsh Government’s Sustainable Communities for Learning Programme, Coleg Cambria is transforming its land-based campus at Llysfasi, near Ruthin.
A hub of sustainability, the college will use the state-of-the art complex to guide and educate the farming sector and local community toward innovative agricultural practices, as well as supporting independent businesses and using meat and produce grown on-site to drive economic operations.
Professor Tim Wheeler, chair of governors at Coleg Cambria, said their vision will help advance the landscape of agriculture in the north east Wales region and beyond for generations to come.
“The college is making a major investment in its Llysfasi campus to ensure the education and training in agriculture and land-based courses it offers reflects a forward-looking perspective as the industry evolves to meet the challenges of becoming carbon neutral,” he said.
“Students will enjoy outstanding facilities in a major building that itself will be carbon neutral.
“They will receive a first-rate experience that will prepare them for a range of careers in the land-based economy, and that in turn will create a centre of excellence to support local farming.”
Professor Wheeler added: “The college is delighted to have received up to £6m from the Welsh Government and will be contributing more than £3m from its reserves to carry this important initiative forward.
“The overall investment of around £10m will ensure the long-term, sustainable future of the campus and we are excited to see these plans come to fruition.”
Detailed proposals also include vibrant new classroom and meeting spaces, a machine workshop, job shop, landscaping and forest walks.
There will also be bilingual information events and advice sessions to mentor local farmers looking to diversify and develop their own commercial processes.
Elin Roberts, head of the Llysfasi site, said there will be further promotion of the Welsh language with a firm focus on marrying academic,
agricultural and social opportunities for learners and the community.
“We are in the heart of the Vale of Clwyd but Cambria’s impact travels far further than that,” she said.
“This development is a game changer not only for farming but for land-based education, creating opportunities for students but also supporting the sector as it moves toward innovative, technological and sustainable systems and embraces new methods.
“We are delighted to see work is underway and are laying the foundations for future generations of our learners.”