THE first students will attend lectures at a new Gloucestershire College campus near Cinderford in 2018.

The announcement this morning that the college will build a new campus on the Northern Quarter site brings to an end two years of doubts over the project.

Work on the new campus had been expected to start in September 2014 but it was dogged by delays over the planning process and legal challenges to the wider Northern Quarter regeneration.

The purpose-built campus will replace the college at Five Acres and create a new sixth form centre which will be run in partnership with Mitcheldean-based Dene Magna.

College principal, Matthew Burgess, said: “I am pleased to be able to reconfirm Gloucestershire College’s commitment to creating an outstanding purpose built post-16 educational facility in the Cinderford Northern Quarter.

“I recognise that there have been delays in starting the build due to factors outside of our control.

“But we are working closely with the Gloucestershire Local Enterprise Partnership to secure the final element of funding required and I am confident that we will be on site later this year, ready to welcome students into our new campus for September 2018.”