EXCITING plans for a college’s multi-million pound expansion have been revealed.

East Sussex College has revealed a new three-year strategy which could see a whole new site being built in Newhaven.

There are also plans for new developments at the college’s campus sites in Lewes, Eastbourne and Hastings.

A virtual public consultation has been launched, with college chiefs keen to hear the views of students, parents and carers, employers, community leaders and strategic partners.

If successful, the college will get a £20 million investment boost from the Government.

East Sussex College principal and chief executive Rebecca Conroy said: “We are extremely proud and really excited to unveil the new strategic plan for our college group.

“This is a big moment for us; the plan has been developed with campus specialisms and the student experience at its core.

“We want our learning and skills offer to be what the communities of East Sussex need and deserve.

East Sussex Colleg chief executive Rebecca Conroy

East Sussex Colleg chief executive Rebecca Conroy

“The reallocation of space, and a close look at the course offer at each campus, will allow us to strengthen our position as a leading provider of education in East Sussex."

At Newhaven, the college says it wants to develop a “small, specialist campus” that links to efforts to regenerate the town.

Skills on offer would include construction, engineering and logistics and apprenticeships. There would also be more courses provide to boost adult skills including training in basic skills and pre-employment skills.

The college said talks are underway over moving to the former University Technical College (UTC) site at the harbour, which closed in 2019.

In Lewes there could be a further £9 million development including new social spaces for students, with a three-storey development to offer a “modern and attractive welcome” to students and visitors.

How the new East Sussex College facilities may look in Lewes

How the new East Sussex College facilities may look in Lewes

At Eastbourne the college is investing £1.2 million this year, and has a further bid of £8 million to improve its campus facilities in a second phase.

This could include moving the hair and beauty training to a more prominent spot to interact with the public.

How the innovative covered courtyard at East Sussex Colleges campus at Eastbourne may look

How the innovative covered courtyard at East Sussex College's campus at Eastbourne may look

The plan would include a new three-storey building providing a home to art and design courses, and provide a vibrant “covered courtyard” area.

Meanwhile the hospitality and catering courses could move to Devonshire Park in the town centre with a whole new training kitchen and restaurant to serve tourists, theatregoers and the public.

Finally at Hastings, where there has already been £60 million of investment at the Station Plaza and Ore Valley sites, there could be changes.

At Station Plaza new conferencing and office space could be created for businesses in the town centre, as well as a ground floor gym. The Hastings tourist information centre could also relocate there to provide direct work experience for students seeking a career in the industry.

How the East Sussex College Station Plaza campus in Hastings looks today

How the East Sussex College Station Plaza campus in Hastings looks today

There is a £3 million bid to the government for a Green Technology Training Centre at Ore Valley to boost environmentally friendly courses in construction, green energy generation, and in skills for the electric vehicles industry, including with a new automotive training centre.

The college said: “The significant impact that COVID has had on our local economies means that the stakes are very high.

“We have a huge responsibility to be agile and responsive to the needs of local people and employers, and to be a conduit to drive high quality skills development, retraining opportunities and positively contribute to the local health and wealth of our communities.

“We take this responsibility extremely seriously.”

To find out more about the consultation, which runs until June 30, visit: https://east-sussex-college-consultation.virtual-engage.com/