Dr Neil Hudson, MP for Penrith and The Border, asked the Education Secretary for his assistance in ensuring the Strategic Review into Newton Rigg leads to a smooth transition to a new provider.
Secretary of State for Education Gavin Williamson was making a statement on the Skills for Jobs White Paper in the House of Commons earlier today.
Dr Hudson asked:
“I really welcome this forward thinking Skills for Jobs statement from the Government. FE Colleges play a huge role in levelling up rural communities such as mine. As my Right Honourable Friend knows, Newton Rigg College in Penrith, the only land-based College in Cumbria, is in a Strategic Review by the FE Commissioner as we look to secure a new organisation to take over the College. Will my Right Honourable Friend ask his Department and DEFRA to work with stakeholders to secure the future of this vital College and ensure that the Review process and subsequent negotiations are able to achieve a positive outcome and facilitate a smooth transition to a new provider?”
In response the Education Secretary said:
“I would like to thank my Honourable Friend for all the work he has done with myself and of course the Minister for Skills and Colleges in highlighting some of the challenges that Newton Rigg face. We will continue to work with him and the whole Department to do everything we can do to have a sustainable future for the College by working with local partners.”
Commenting after the Commons session Dr Hudson remarked:
“I was pleased with the response the that the Education Secretary issued. The Review into Newton Rigg is entering a critical stage and having the Secretary of State confirm that he and his department will continue to work for a positive outcome is a welcome development in the campaign to keep it open for business.”