Ceremony Marks Ebbw Vale College Milestone

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Work on the multi-million pound building which is to house Blaenau Gwent’s sixth form education has reached its highest point, with a topping out ceremony yesterday to mark the occasion.

The four-storey Learning Zone, on the former steelworks site in Ebbw Vale, will provide Blaenau Gwent’s post- 16 education when it opens in September 2012.

A topping out ceremony was conducted yesterday by contractor Leadbitter’s regional director, Rob Bradley. The building is due to be handed to the council in May 2012.

The £27.5m Learning Zone will provide all of Blaenau Gwent’s post-16 education, in conjunction with Coleg Gwent, catering for 1,400 students in a 13,300 campus building.

Sixth forms at Brynmawr Foundation School, Ebbw Vale Comprehensive School, and Tredegar Comprehensive will all close, with pupils transferred to the new site.

An independent report in August showed how work on the Learning Zone had benefited local companies to the tune of £2m. Out of £15m of work contracts let to date, £13m has gone directly to Welsh firms and £2m of contracts to local companies.

Of the 350 people involved in building the Learning Zone, 39 per cent live within 20 miles of the site and 30 were previously unemployed.