appleby heritage centre
Rory visited the Appleby Heritage Centre on Friday 1st July, where he met with staff and students at Eden’s sole provider of vocational education. Rory was impressed by the dedication of the staff and the centre’s various facilities, and chatted with students from local Appleby and Kirkby Stephen Grammar Schools who spoke of their satisfaction with the centre’s courses and training. He met with engineering, hair and beauty, and childcare students during his tour of the site.
Appleby Heritage Centre provides education and training courses for all ages, and runs a Young Engineer Programme aimed at young people with ambitions to enter the engineering industry. Its courses lead to NVQ, GNVQ and AVCS qualifications in a variety of subjects, including business, photography, welding and modern languages, and it also completes restoration contracts for external customers. The centre was established in 1996 to convert an old Midland Railways goods shed into a workshop for restoring heritage vehicles, providing local employment and training in traditional skills.
Rory said: “Appleby Heritage Centre is a truly unique project, a learning centre that has utilized the most extraordinary heritage space in a way that educates, employs and conserves: it is yet another local success story, and I know of no other similar place that exists. It has responded with flexibility, imagination and innovation to a changing world of education, and made sure that hands-on vocational training continues to feature strongly in young peoples’ lives – ensuring that ’non-viable’ courses that one can’t access at school continue to be accessible to those who need them. Once again I have been enormously impressed by the vision and dedication of all involved in this amazing place.“