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Haywood Academy awarded £2.1 million to transform Burslem Town Hall into 6th form college

30 April 2014

Haywood Academy has been awarded funding by Schools Minister David Laws to turn Burslem Town Hall into a 6th form college.

The Burslem based college, which is sponsored by international table-ware manufacturer Steelite International, has got the green light for a £2.1million investment that will see over 400 students studying at the historic grade II* listed building.

The building, owned by Stoke-on-Trent City Council, has been empty for the last two years.

It had previously been home to the Ceremica museum.

The school hopes to begin converting the beautiful building by the autumn, opening for business in September 2015.

Academy Head Teacher Carl Ward said: “The old town hall has a special place in the hearts of Burslem people. Bringing it back to life with a thriving sixth form college will be a massive boost to the town’s regeneration. It will act as a catalyst for growth.

“The town has a deep rooted cultural and entrepreneurial tradition. Josiah Wedgwood’s house is just across the street and over the way is the inspiration Burslem School of Art. It’s the perfect place for us to work with Steelite to build a brighter future for the next generation.”

Steelite Chief Executive Kevin Oakes said: “We have a long association with Haywood High School – now Haywood Academy – and we are absolutely delighted to be a part of the school’s future by sponsoring this project.

“Anything we can do to support local education and to foster good relationships between education and industry is vitally important.

“Stoke-on-Trent’s ceramics industry is undergoing a renaissance and we must build for the future. A thriving Burslem town centre is vitally important to Steelite International – we’re fiercely proud of the town’s famous heritage.

City Council Leader Mohammed Pervez said the successful bid for Government support was fabulous news for the town and for the city. He said: “The city is bouncing back. There is a new generation of creative talent, a new wave of optimism and energy, and a new sense of confidence and direction that is making the city a hot spot for learning, investment and regeneration.

“We’ve signed a £113m City Deal to boost employment and skills for thousands, and funding for the development of the UK’s largest deep geothermal district heating scheme to power up homes and business across the city.