College celebrates 20 years at the heart of Cirencester's community

Wilts and Gloucestershire Standard: The class of 1991: staff members who have been with the College since it opened. The class of 1991: staff members who have been with the College since it opened.

CIRENCESTER College is 20 years old today and is revving itself up for a year of celebrations as it approaches its landmark 21st anniversary.

Since the college officially opened on September 1 1991 around 75,000 students have been through the doors and some 2,000 members of staff have been employed. Some 20 original members of staff remain at the college.

One of these original staff members is college vice principal Desna McAll. “Cirencester College has had 20 years at the heart of Cirencester’s community,” she said. “We have impacted on a lot of lives and we want to celebrate that.

“This is a great opportunity to get people together. We want to encourage people to come forward with their memories and recollections.”

The college grew out of a sixth form centre on the same site and opened after a £1.5m modernisation project.

On August 30 1991 the college took out an advertisement in the Wilts and Glos Standard. In it, the then Principal Nigel Robins, who only left the college last year, said: “What we wanted to do is create a college for the whole community and with the huge new range of facilities on offer I think we gave achieved that.”

It is this ‘whole community’ that the college wants to call upon to help it celebrate its 20th year, leading up to an even bigger event for its 21st anniversary.

As part of the celebrations Cirencester College will be setting up a special website called Ciren2 onto which it will post memorabilia and encourage people to add their own memories and photos. “This will allow us to build an online archive, capturing the stories about those people who have made this such special college,” said Ms McAll.

Principal, Kim Clifford, in her first year, is equally enthusiastic about the project. “I’d love to see and read your stories and learn more about how the college has affected your lives. I hope you will join us in making this venture a success and celebrating our 20th birthday”

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