Fareham College celebrates half a century of educating Hampshire's young people

A COLLEGE has been celebrating half a century of educating the region’s young people.

Monday, 19th October 2020, 4:46 pm
Updated Monday, 19th October 2020, 5:59 pm
Fareham College's former catering manager, Claire Hopkins, working at the college in 1998. In total, Claire worked at the college for 33 years.

Fareham College first opened its doors to students on October 17, 1970. At that time it was known as Fareham Technical College.

To celebrate the landmark occasion, students at the college’s Avenue 141 restaurant baked a birthday cake along with cupcakes for staff to enjoy. Long-serving teachers were joined by a number returning staff to reminisce about days gone by and how the college has changed.

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The college's first principal, Mr L North, at the opening ceremony.

Former catering manager, Claire Hopkins, who last year retired from the college after 33 years of service, said: ‘The college bears little resemblance from when I joined.

‘At that time the college was known as Fareham Tertiary College and was on two sites; Bishopsfield Road and Price’s Sixth Form College, formally a grammar school for boys in Park Lane. The Principal at the time was John McNabb.

‘Today, Fareham College’s main campus bears little resemblance to the buildings when I joined the college. The kitchen refectory was originally sited in what is now part of the art department. Fareham College has come a long way and it has never looked better than today.’

One of Claire’s fondest memories was when she was joined for the day by a well known celebrity chef.

Fareham College principal, Andrew Kaye, cutting a cake to celebrate the college's fiftieth birthday.

Claire added: ‘I have many memorable moments. One of the most fun was when John Torode was invited to perform a cooking demonstration at an open day. I think the number of years I worked at the college is testament to how much I enjoyed working with the staff and students and what a friendly and progressive place it is.’

Part of the celebrations saw principal Andrew Kaye cut the college’s birthday cake. Mr Kaye believes the fundamental principles behind the college’s success are the same today as they were half a century ago.

He said: ‘Fareham College still delivers a strikingly similar mission to that stated in the Order of Ceremonies from the official opening of the college in October 1970, albeit we might not express it in the same language.

‘The Order of Ceremonies from the official opening in 1970 stated “the college should cater for the training and educational needs of local industry, trade and commerce: that it should provide for the 16-19-year-olds full-time and part-time courses designed to assist them in their chosen professions or vocations: that it should provide for all members of the community a full range of educational, cultural and recreational activities”.

‘Fifty years on we have outstanding facilities, an excellent reputation and a commitment to ensuring our students get the very best education and support they need for their future careers.’

Documentation from the original ceremony depicts a religious affair with a range of hymns and prayers blessing the college’s future. There was also a rendition of the national anthem, God Save the Queen.

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