Penrith and The Border MP, Dr Neil Hudson, today asked the Prime Minster if he would support the proposed rebuild of Penrith’s Ullswater Community College (UCC) in his constituency.
Estimates from the 2018 DfE building condition survey suggest investment in the current UCC site of approximately £11 million by the end of 25/26 to keep the site in its current state, with estimates rising in the future.
Dr Hudson has met with the school leadership and Cumbria County Council who have given their backing to the project.
At a session of Prime Minister’s Questions Dr Hudson asked:
“Ullswater Community College led superbly by Headteacher Stephen Gilby is a fantastic school in Penrith with 1500 pupils, over 200 staff and a 600 square mile catchment area.
The school is in desperate need of redevelopment to keep the site fit for purpose.
In partnership with Myerscough College the school is helping provide a lifeline for land-based education in Cumbria after the sad closure of Newton Rigg College in July.
As a great opportunity for the Government to level up rural areas, will the Prime Minister join me in supporting the proposed re-build of Ullswater Community College?”
The Prime Minister responded with:
“Yes, Mr Speaker and I thank my Honourable Friend who is a great campaigner for the people of Penrith and The Border. What I can tell him that in addition to our support for 500 rebuilding projects in the next decade, we are doing 100 immediately. For the financial 2021/22 Cumbria County Council has been allocated £5.3 million to improve buildings including Ullswater Community College.”
Speaking after the Commons session Dr Hudson added:
“I was very encouraged with the Prime Minister’s reply to my question. I am determined to do all in my power to try to ensure that the fantastic work of Stephen Gilby, Headteacher, and all associated with this proposal comes to fruition. I have already written to the Secretary of State for Education pressing for the school’s redevelopment and have now raised this directly with the Prime Minister.
Ullswater Community College is a central part of our community in Penrith, helping to develop skills of young people in a range of areas and disciplines. I will follow this issue very closely and encourage the Council to allocate funding directly towards the redevelopment of UCC.”