CONEL joins London's biggest college group

The College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London joins the Capital City College Group, formed from Westminster Kingsway and City & Islington colleges

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Capital City College Group (CCCG) will today merge with the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London (CONEL), it has been announced.

The move will cement the group's place as the third largest in the UK, behind the LTE Group and NCG, and the biggest in London. It will have an estimated 37,000 students and an annual income of £110 million.

CCCG was created in August 2016 through the merger of Westminster Kingsway College and City and Islington Colleges. Earlier this year, it launched Capital City College Training (CCCT), a training arm providing workforce development support and around 100 apprenticeship programmes.

Following the merger with CONEL, CCCG will offer provision at 11 sites across London and the South East.

Exceptional benefits

Andy Wilson (pictured), chief executive of CCCG, said: “We are all very excited to be bringing together three of London’s most successful colleges to create a technical education and training powerhouse and a regional college for the city that will transform its FE sector by delivering exceptional benefits to local communities and businesses.”

He added that as the country prepared to exit the European Union, CCCG would be “ideally placed to help meet the capital’s skills needs- from the hospitality industry which stands to be affected significantly post-Brexit; to construction and engineering, which will have a major dependency on a pool of homegrown talent to support future major infrastructure projects”.

Three identities crucial

Mr Wilson told Tes the group had seen the benefits of last year’s merger and expected to see similar benefits from the merger with CONEL.

He added the three colleges in the group were all financially stable and would have done well on their own, but the creation of the group would allow them to “take risks and deliver resources to our priority areas”. “It also means you can invest in staff,” he said, adding: "It is really crucial that the three colleges continue to exist as three different entities. These are three colleges that have got reputations and are well known and have been built over a number of years."

While there were no current plans to expand the college group further, it had submitted an expression of interest in forming an institute of technology in partnership with Middlesex University, Mr Wilson added. 

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