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Harrogate College to leave Hull College Group

The North Yorkshire college is to be demerged from the group and will join Leeds City College's Luminate Education Group

College demerger: Harrogate College is splitting from Hull College Group

The Hull College Group is to hand over one of its campuses to another college group.

Harrogate College will join the Luminate Education Group (previously known as Leeds City College Group) on 1 August.

The move is part of Hull’s five-year restructuring plan, developed in response to financial troubles that prompted an intervention report by the FE commissioner. 

Industrial action: Two more days of strikes at Hull College Group

More coverage: Strikes off at Hull College Group

Background: Hull College Group staff vote to strike over job cuts

Cutting college costs

Plans to reduce costs by cutting 231 full-time equivalent posts across the group's three campuses led to strike action by University and College Union members last summer. Further planned action was later suspended, however, as management and unions agreed to work together to avoid compulsory redundancies. 

Luminate Education Group includes Leeds City College, Keighley College, Leeds College of Music and the White Rose Academies Trust.

Colin Booth, group chief executive, said welcoming Harrogate College would bring benefits for both students and staff. “This news will mean that Luminate Education Group has responsibility for 30,000 students in total, further proving our role in nurturing the skills for the future in Yorkshire and beyond,” he added.

Harrogate College 'in great shape'

Michelle Swithenbank, chief executive at Hull College Group, said: “We are handing over a strong local college, which is in good health, to Luminate. We wish Harrogate College every future success. We’re focused on growing Hull College and Goole College and continuing to provide the best education and to serve our local communities.”

Harrogate College principal Kevin Williams said: “The college has benefited from the expertise of Hull College Group over a number of years. There is a great opportunity for us in the Luminate Education Group arising from geographic proximity and the opportunity to share best practice. Our recent campus redevelopment, alongside this news, puts us in great shape for the future.”

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