REVIEW OF 20/21 1
Welcome from Chair, Julie Dougill
One Garden Brighton
Financial Results 2021
Curriculum and Campus Development
20/21 Review & Strategic Aims
Looking to the Future
20/21 Highlights 2
WELCOME FROM CHAIR BY JULIE DOUGILL
in capital building projects for our students’ benefit and the college’s long-term success.
Annual Review 20/21 Effective governance through times of a national crisis is crucial. As a corporation, we have closely monitored the developments of COVID-19 and, in particular, the impact on our students and staff. It has been inspiring to witness the resilience and commitment of our students and teachers, which has resulted in high student achievement and retention rates alongside strong student and staff satisfaction rates. The development of our facilities across Plumpton College remains a priority. Our prudent financial management has meant that we have been able to keep investing
I am proud that we opened a Centre of Horticulture Excellence at One Garden Brighton in partnership with regional stakeholders. We have also begun building the £10m Agri-Food capital investment programme. These new facilities will teach our students the latest technological, robotic and artificial intelligence skills that the land-based sector and a resilient economy require. Plumpton College has demonstrated climate leadership and remains committed to providing the skills employers need to transition to a sustainable, zerocarbon economy. We have received new funding from the Department of Education to lead a national project to help secure our region’s position in green technologies, sustainable land management, and food production. Strong relationships with industry partners remain the cornerstone of our educational delivery to students. Looking ahead, we will be working with our partners 3
to agree on a new ambitious strategic plan which recognises the transformation taking place in the land-based sector and the role we need to play. I am confident that this will realise our ambition to be a more agile, responsive, and environmentally sustainable college that embraces educational innovation. On behalf of the Corporation, I would like to express our gratitude to our students, staff, and parents/ carers for their versatility and positive response to the last year’s challenges. I would also like to thank those valued members of the Corporation who stepped down this year for their commitment and considerable experience in supporting the college’s transformation. We have no doubt that the wider community of Plumpton College can continue to apply its collective ingenuity and determination to inspire students, sustain and grow our college and play a full part in the regional and national recovery in the coming year.
OUR VISION To be an innovative and inspirational college delivering excellent education, training and research that enables our students and employers to play a leading role in future industry growth and development. 4
NEWS FROM 20/21 College demonstrates training provision for future skills to Ministers
OUR COURSE, YOUR CAREER
Lucy, BA International Wine Business student, now Marketing Specialist at Thorman Hunt, wine importer Nick, BTEC Adventure Education student, now Centre Manager at Lagoon Watersports, Hove
Ellie, FdSc Animal Behaviour and Conservation student, now Supervisor at Middle Farm, Lewes
Wine Division’s first generation Z student
John McPherson, alumni, showcases horticultural excellence at Chelsea Flower Show
AN INTRODUCTION TO ONE GARDEN BRIGHTON BY CHRIS KNELL, FINANCE DIRECTOR The venue has fast become a go-to place to relax for many residents in the city, with over 350k visitors in the first nine months. The venue has also been used to successfully host events, including the college’s staff conference to a Maker’s Fair, and offers an extensive range of short courses and workshops.
After extensive planning and development over the last four years, we were thrilled to see the successful opening of the college’s One Garden Brighton venue to the public in April 2021. A new visitor destination garden, market and kitchen eatery at Stanmer Park, on the outskirts of Brighton. In 2017 the college, Brighton and Hove City Council and the National Lottery Heritage Fund embarked on a collective journey to transform Stanmer Park into a tourist destination, community space, and educational campus for Plumpton College horticulture students. Since its opening, the public’s response has been overwhelming.
One Garden Brighton is a rare surviving example of a complete eighteenth-century estate landscape. It has been regenerated through the design of Eden Project architect, Dominic Cole, focusing on the historic gardening methods. Through his visions, the garden continues to be brought to life by the Horticultural team and students from Plumpton College. The garden is also home to One Kitchen, with high-quality service and products. Our kitchen is a destination eatery and meeting place at the heart of the garden, serving high-quality food inspired by the fruit, vegetables, and herbs grown in the garden and from local producers. As you might expect, you can also find a selection of plants seen in the garden, including some unusual 7
specimens available for purchase in our plant sales area. One Market champions local producers stocking a range of baked goods, deli items and gifts, and Plumpton Estate wine, meat and cheese. The overarching objective is to focus on local produce, sustainability and good quality British produce. In the spring of 2022, the latest development of One Garden Brighton will be the opening of a Dog Grooming parlour which will be both an educational facility and a commercial outlet.
We highly recommend visiting as it is free and open daily to the public, 9.30 - 17.00.
FINANCIAL RESULTS 2021
Three years operating surpluses The financial statements are presented in Group form, separating the performance of the college from the Group, which includes the college’s subsidiary One Garden Brighton. Building cash reserves £575k adjusted operating surplus (2020: surplus £149k) as the college continues to build upon its highly sustainable operating model. Investing in the future £2,297k cash reserves (2020: cash £937k) with the college no longer requiring an overdraft to support its day to day operations.
Low borrowing £4,541k was invested by the college in improving its educational infrastructure, with most additions at One Garden Brighton or assets under construction for the AgriFood project partially funded by the Coast to Capital and South East Local Enterprise Partnership. Improved financial health Total borrowing continued to fall during the year to £1,961k (2020: £2,084k), with a new banking partnership with Virgin Money. This represents a very low level of borrowing proportionate to income at 10.7% (2020: 12.4%). This is comfortably below the Association of Colleges guidance of 40% of income and consistent with a ‘Good’ financial health grade.
TOTAL INCOME £18,253m 8.3% YoY
TOTAL EXPENDITURE £17,678m 4.9% YoY £1,158m
£2,975m Study programmes & apprenticeships
Staff costs (excluding FRS102 pension)
Farming activity Income generating activities
AGRI-FOOD PROJECT UPDATE BY JAMES HIBBERT, DEPUTY PRINCIPAL
Never before have our students had access to such technology. They will leave Plumpton College ready to face the challenges and opportunities within the land management and production sector. farm and agri-food educational resource in the South of England. The two-storey building will create a network hub for knowledge transfer, training, and business improvement for rural businesses. The college has collaborated with South East Local Enterprise Partnership, Virgin Money and East Sussex County Council to enhance and develop the future of Agricultural and Horticultural education. This is part of our journey to becoming a regional lead for sustainable land management, practice and training. With development well underway with a large scale capital development to enhance our technical facilities and provide a platform for further growth. At £10m, the project represents the largest investment into a college
It will include: Improved facilities for businesses and adult students to meet informally and conduct meetings A café featuring produce from the Plumpton Estate Flexible and inspiring lecture theatres and conferencing facilities to accommodate up to 300 people Commercial training kitchens for food skills training, for use by schools and the wider community to provide outreach education
Plumpton College, which already boasts one of the largest college farms in the UK, will also invest in improvements to this enterprise, including farm animal production technologies for its sheep and beef facilities and a new pig unit. The existing dairy unit includes new automated Lely A5 Astronaut milking stations and improvements to cow welfare.
The Agri-Food project is due for completion Winter 2022.
REVIEW OF 20/21 BY JEREMY KERSWELL, CHIEF EXECUTIVE AND PRINCIPAL
I am extremely proud of the achievements of our students and staff last year, whose versatility, resilience and hard work resulted in so many positive outcomes for us all. Our adaptability enabled students to continue to access their learning and the wide range of support available throughout the year, resulting in outstanding student retention and high achievement rates. This places Plumpton College firmly within the top 10% of providers nationally and demonstrates the value of the educational experience our students receive. Our students’ ambition and belief continued to be raised, with over 75% of those finishing with us last year achieving at least a Level 3 qualification, equivalent to studying 3 A Levels. This achievement, alongside our students’ development of all important employability skills, results in them being in such demand from employers. Integral to meeting that demand has also been our ability to attract more students and further afield,
including more 16-18 year olds, adult and apprenticeship students. The value in which we are held by employers and key stakeholders, as well as our very strong financial health, has enabled us to continue to invest in facilities to provide our students access to the latest industry enhancements in the most inspirational learning environments. The college’s ability to continue to attract more students, deliver ever more consistent high standards of education and increasingly meet the changing needs of its employers further demonstrates our position as a market leader regionally. At a time of so much change in the workplace and across society, there is no doubt that Plumpton College is extremely well placed to play a pivotal role in the future of the sector we support.
To provide an innovative and inspiring learning experience enabling everyone to fulfil their potential.
To attract, retain and develop an ambitious, high performing and professional workforce committed to delivering excellence to all.
To offer a dynamic curriculum that attracts students, enhances personal development and supports the future growth of the industries we serve.
To develop sustainable and enterprising relationships with employers, schools and key partners to enhance student experience, prospects and sector business.
To provide inspirational learning spaces and state of the art facilities which showcase best practice, embrace technological advances and maximise student progress.
To manage resources efficiently and commercially to be ever-more resilient and sustainable. 13
To consistently provide high quality training and education in a safe and welcoming environment that enables our students and employers to be successful. 14
OUR YEAR IN NUMBERS
HIGH LEVELS OF ATTENDANCE DESPITE THE PANDEMIC
94.4% PASS RATE
95% OF STUDENTS FEEL SAFE AT COLLEGE
EXCELLENT STUDENT RETENTION
HIGHLY COMMENDED IN THE AOC BEACON AWARDS FOR OUR WORK WITH SEND STUDENTS
40% ENGLISH 46.3% MATHS BEST EVER GCSE HIGH GRADES
3.1% ABOVE NATIONAL AVERAGE & 4.6% ABOVE SPECIALIST COLLEGE AVERAGE
OF STUDENTS WOULD RECOMMEND PLUMPTON COLLEGE TO A FRIEND 15
LOOKING TO THE FUTURE Plumpton College is committed to becoming a ‘leading’ college within the Further Education Climate Action Roadmap. Beyond this we aim to take an innovative approach to addressing all our greenhouse gas emissions. 16
New degree courses for September 2023 with Royal Agricultural University • BSc Sustainable Agriculture • BSc Sustainable Horticulture • BSc Environmental Land Management Electric Car Fleet
As part of a collaboration with other colleges in Sussex, we won over £7 million of additional funding. The Greener Sussex project will enable Plumpton College to develop green technologies and provide the skills and education for sustainable land management and food production for many years to come.
As part of this project, we will deliver Carbon Literacy courses to over 500 students in the coming year.
Objectives: • New Level 3 Carbon Literacy qualification for students • Staff to embed carbon literacy into fifteen courses
Outcome: • Develop a Carbon Literacy masterclass
OUR 20/21 HIGHLIGHTS
Silver Award win for Plumpton Estate at The Champagne & Sparkling Wine World Championships
College celebrates opening of its new destination, One Garden Brighton
Outreach Programme launched
College reopens campus to visitors and students after second lockdown
Royal Agricultural University degree finds new home
Two new Vice Principals appointed Jo Buckley, Vice Principal (Curriculum & Quality)
College awarded with £0.5m funding to support adults seeking new careers
Phaedra Tanghe, Vice Principal (Student Support)
New virtual learning system, MS Teams
BSc (Hons) Veterinary Physiotherapy
Successful launch of pilot ‘Entry into Viticulture’ re-training programme
Working in partnership
Ditchling Road, Plumpton, East Sussex BN7 3AE 01273 890 454 plumpton.ac.uk | email@example.com