New look centre for computing

Pupils try out the new facilities at Garstang Community Academy
Pupils try out the new facilities at Garstang Community Academy

Students have this week had their first glimpse of Garstang Community Academy’s new information and communications technology and resource centre.

School bosses officially opened the £800,000 suite on Monday after a four-month overhaul of the former Fairsnape building.

The project, which has seen a complete transformation of the 1970s temporary complex was made possible through a successful £750,000 government bid.

Headteacher Phil Birch said staff and students were thrilled with the results.

He said: “We had been trying for a few years to refurbish and transform the building but as with all projects it is very difficult to get the funding required.

“Fortunately we were successful in securing a government grant and a few months later, here we are with a building to be proud of and of immeasurable value.”

Work got underway to build and upgrade the facility in June and was completed last week. All that remains of the old building is the ground rooms which have been refurbished throughout.

The transformation has seen a complete re-structuring of the first floor to provide four new interactive classrooms and office space.

As well as using up-to-date technology, students can now also make use of a multi-purpose learning centre and careers library.

Mr Birch added the bright and airy interior had been designed purposefully to make a comfortable and exciting place for students to study.

“Restructuring an existing building rather than a new building was a cost-effective way forward and now we have a resource worthy of the 21st century that is fantastic to teach in and fantastic to learn in. I am delighted with the outcome.”

Mr Birch said he hoped the facility would also lend itself for wider community use.

On November 21, Garstang Academy will host a careers event involving community partners, businesses and speakers. The session will be open to all.

The investment in the ICT and resource centre is the latest in a line of re-development projects.

In January 2011 the school opened a £2m sports hall, followed later in the year by the upgrading of the school hall.

See for video tour of the new ICT centre facilities.