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Students help to grow science


College community combines for charity

9 Graduates celebrate career milestone

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Outstanding Investment

Investment in specialist facilities pays dividends Reaseheath has some of the best specialist facilities and resources in the country, thanks to a recent £80 million investment across campus. The latest projects, which have delivered further industry standard training facilities, student accommodation and an Employer Hub, were completed and in use during the current academic year. This £30 million new build was support funded by the Cheshire & Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership. The design of the new buildings has been influenced by industry to ensure they meet the future needs of our students and employers. These superb new facilities include:

Advanced Engineering and Agri-Tech Centre (£8 million) This exciting project has involved an overhaul of our agricultural engineering department and allows us to deliver next generation skills in precision engineering and precision farming. The centre also houses our construction plant academy and a rail services and transport infrastructure training hub. Our students learn in five modern workshops with practical teaching areas, fitted with the latest technical equipment. There is also a showroom which is available to our industry partners for product launches and bespoke training days.

Halls of Residence (£13 million) Our latest halls of residence have provided a further 200 purpose built bedrooms in a modern town house style. Each block has a communal kitchen, lounge and dining area. This project has brought the total accommodation on campus to over 1,000 bedrooms.

Sports Science and Performance Academy (£6 million) For use by students and by our local community outside college hours, our new sports hub has a 3G international standard rugby sports pitch and a Multi Use Games Area (MUGA) all weather sports pitch. Our sports centre has a four court sport hall with changing and shower rooms. Equipped with carpet flooring and a stage, this facility can also be used for exams, conferences and presentations. Two connecting studios are dedicated to sports science and have specialised equipment including an altitude chamber, an Olympic standard lifting platform and sports massage equipment.

University Centre Reaseheath and Employer Hub (£2.1million) This flexible extension provides two 80 seat interconnected lecture theatres with retractable seating and a motorised dividing wall, conference and seminar facilities, tutorial pods, meeting and teaching rooms and networking spaces. They are used by our 800 undergraduates and by local and regional businesses. (See official launch on page 3).

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Reaseheath scores high in mental health awards The outstanding ways in which our Health and Wellbeing team successfully supports the mental health and wellbeing of students and staff have been recognised by the Association of Colleges.

Employer Hub will boost regional economy Reaseheath has launched an Employer Hub to provide increased support for regional and rural businesses. The ÂŁ2.1million project was supported by Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership through the Local Growth Fund. This government funding is available for projects which are recognised as benefiting the local area and its economy. Our Employer Hub offers tailormade conferencing and seminar facilities, meeting and interview rooms and networking spaces. Crucially, it creates a focal point where employers can discuss the opportunity to launch collaborative research and trials run by undergraduates from University Centre Reaseheath or by our Further Education students. Reaseheath has a successful record of facilitating these mutually beneficial projects, which allow businesses to drive innovation and economic growth by partnering students who have relevant research skills and knowledge. In return our students gain essential

industry experience and workplace skills which can lead to career opportunities. Businesses are encouraged to have an input into curriculum development, ensuring that students have the skills which employers need, and into student mentoring and employability programmes. Our Employer Hub also provides access to specialist technical resources, from e-journals to industry standard trials facilities, and to support from our experienced technologists. Ged Barlow, Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership Board Member and Chairman of the Performance and Investment Committee, officially launched the facility.

Our team of experienced professionals was a runner-up in the Mental Health and Wellbeing category of the AoC Beacon Awards, which showcases best practice and innovation among colleges nationwide. The accolade was announced at the TES FE Awards in London. Reaseheath has successfully implemented a ‘whole college’ approach to mental health and wellbeing aimed at establishing a safe, happy and healthy community. Professionals in our Wellbeing Hub actively promote a positive culture of mental wellness, workplace wellbeing, healthy lifestyles and good behaviour. This supportive environment means students can discuss and be informed about mental health matters, drugs and alcohol, internet and social media safety and sexual and social relationships, leading to them feeling secure and able to learn. As a result we have increased overall student retention and achievement and students with learning difficulties and disabilities achieve well above the national average. The vast majority of students tell us they feel safe and confident on campus and there has been a reduction in staff turnover and sickness levels.

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Higher Education Graduation

Reaseheath graduates reach career milestone

Successful graduates from University Centre Reaseheath received their degrees at a ceremony at St Mary’s Church, Nantwich. Watched by their families and employers and applauded by passers-by, the graduates celebrated the completion of degrees in agriculture, business and events management, countryside conservation, equine science, food science and horticulture science or landscape design. Among the graduates were dairy technicians from Reaseheath’s unique Eden training programme, a bespoke education initiative supported by leading companies in the dairy industry and aimed at producing world-class employees. The companies collectively invest over £1million annually into the development of their trainees and into Reaseheath’s International Dairy Academy. Principal and CEO Marcus Clinton emphasised that a Reaseheath degree delivered the transferable skills and competitive edge to succeed. The degrees were designed, resourced and delivered in partnership with relevant industries and graduates were poised to enter a sector where their skills would make them highly employable and able to take advantage of worldwide opportunities. Guest of honour was award winning garden designer and TV and radio presenter Chris Beardshaw (pictured left with Marcus Clinton).

Nine graduates were singled out for the excellence of their studies:

Special Recognition Awards n Jane Lucas (Outstanding Achievement in Undergraduate Research) n Jodie Patterson (Academic Excellence Award in Equine Science) n Michelle Hamill, Arla (National Skills Academy Award: Best Academic Student) n Laura Moulding, Little Town Dairy (Society of Dairy Technology Award: Best Student Project)

The Dean’s List for Academic Excellence n Mary Ankers (Foundation Degree in Agriculture with Dairy Herd Management) n Abigail Bore (Foundation Degree in Rural Events Management) n Lucy Hinton (Foundation Degree in Countryside Conservation and Recreational Management) n Jodie Patterson and Rhiannon Elsmore (BSc (Hons) Equine Science) n Michelle Hamill and Laura Moulding (Foundation Degree in Dairy Technology) n Adam Taylor (BSc (Hons) Landscape Management) n Jane Lucas (BSc (Hons) Horticultural Science and Production Technology) Watch at


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Agriculture Graduates and Course Manager Mark Biddulph celebrate

Business and Events Management Graduates with Course Manager Jonathan Gateley

Countryside Graduates with Course Manager Dr Richard Sandland

Equine Physical Therapies Graduates with Course Manager Katie Hancox

Equine Science Graduates celebrate with Course Manager Amelia Kenyon

Food Science Eden graduates outside St Mary’s Church

Horticulture Science and Landscape Design Graduates with Course Managers Craig Bailey and Lis Morris

The procession party aplauds

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News from University Centre Reaseheath Paige is Crufts Champion Inspirational canine undergraduate Paige Jepson took a national title at Crufts, the world’s most prestigious dog show. Paige won the Young Kennel Club’s (YKC) ‘Young Person of the Year Award’ for being a role model to young people and their dogs. The award recognises the young person who has contributed most to the dog world through their hard work and selfless actions. She qualified for the line-up for the overall title by previously winning the YKC’s ‘Good Buddy of the Year’. Over 11,000 members of the public voted for the five category winners to decide the champion. Paige was nominated for her efforts to mentor other young people at clubs and shows locally and nationally, particularly through training for obedience and puppy classes. She also regularly volunteers at YKC shows and at the two main events in the dog show calendar, Crufts and Discover Dogs. Paige was presented with the Shaun McAlpine Memorial Trophy on the final day of Crufts. She and her border collie, Pebbles, and bearded collie, Puzzle, also collected awards in YKC obedience, handling and groom through classes.

Fish training makes waves BSc Zoo Management undergraduate Felix Rowan-Young is making waves by producing a training plan for fish. Although little is known about the cognitive powers of fish, with many experts believing that they are untrainable, Felix is enjoying considerable success with Simba, a lionfish who needs careful handling due to his venomous spines.

if successful could be used for other species which require minimal handling.

By training Simba to follow a target stick, Felix is encouraging the fish to swim into a crate where he can be safely contained for health checks or aquarium maintenance.

Felix uses Simba’s favourite treat – mussels – to create a positive association between fish and target stick and has been pleasantly surprised at how responsive he has been to the training. He has written up his findings for his dissertation and is continuing with the training plan in the hopes of furthering and possibly publishing his research.

The training plan aims to minimise stress on both fish and keepers, and

Simba has been part of our zoo’s Indian Ocean exhibit for the past two years.

Marine mammal emergency averted!

A beached pilot whale and several dolphins and seals were successfully rescued from Reaseheath’s front lawn. Fortunately the emergency wasn’t for real, but a simulated situation to enable 40 Animal Science undergraduates and Access to HE students to gain an internationally recognised qualification in wildlife rescue. After the one day course, which included a theory session and practical instruction using inflatable life sized models, all group members achieved their British Divers Marine Life Rescue ‘Marine Mammal Medic’ certificate. This well recognised award is offered annually to our undergraduates and qualifies them to help in day-to-day marine wildlife emergencies via a national register. It is a fantastic addition to their CVs and can open the door to careers in marine rehabilitation and research.

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Research will help restore historic estate BSc (Hons) Landscape Architecture undergraduates are undertaking research into a vulnerable historic estate in North Wales. Gwrych Castle, a Grade I listed country house near Abergele, was one of the first attempts at replicating true medieval architecture in Europe. During the 20th century the estate fell into decline and the house suffered substantially through neglect and vandalism. It was purchased by Gwrych Castle Preservation Trust in 2018 on behalf of the nation. The restoration of the house and estate is scheduled to take 30 years. As part of their Conservation

Management module, our second year undergraduates are carrying out desk and field-based research on the terraces and turrets in the grounds to identify features of interest and to determine their significance. They have produced Conservation Management Plans which will be used by the Trust to aid and direct the ongoing restoration and management of the grounds. Part of the grounds are open to the public. Visit www.gwrychcastle.co.uk

RHS garden will help to fight cybercrime BSc (Hons) Landscape Architecture undergraduates Jake Jackson, Katie Monton, Nathan Webster and Brad Howarth have high hopes of adding to their RHS medal tally with a show garden they have designed for Cheshire Police. The garden aims to raise the awareness of the five steps that can help people stay safe online – Create, Cover, Confidentiality, Click and Connect. These five ‘Cs’ will be represented throughout the garden when it goes on show at RHS Flower Show Tatton Park in July. As well as undertaking the design, the undergraduates will also lead on the garden build under the supervision of horticulture lecturer Steve Williams, and will be supported by other Reaseheath horticulture students.

The same team have already proved their capabilities, as they were responsible for a silver medal winning garden at last year’s RHS Flower Show Tatton Park. Their planting scheme aims to show both sides of cybercrime, with lighter shades representing crime prevention and darker shades indicating the crime being committed. The five ‘Cs’ will be engraved on bespoke steel structures. Visiting RHS Flower Show Tatton Park? See the Cybercrime garden at TP/303.

Exciting research for plant scientists Our applied plant scientists are involved in two ground breaking research projects which may help to grow scientific knowledge. Undergraduates on our BSc (Hons) Applied Plant Science and Production Technology degree and other advanced programmes have been using micro-propagation to help save the rare tubular water dropwort. The technique, carried out under strict control and with modern technology, enables our undergraduates to take samples of the plant in a non-invasive way and to grow literally thousands of tiny new plants. Micro-propagation is commonly used to conserve rare species, and after experimenting our students established a reliable technique for this particular plant. These next generation dropworts will be reintroduced into the wild in suitable areas, making the species far less likely to go extinct. Rose lover Hannah Morrow has also had exciting results with research which she may continue in a Master’s degree. Hannah identified that rose breeders have difficulties breeding some cultivars because they produce non-viable seed. She hypothesised that treating a rose like its related species might improve seed set and germination and devised a simple feed which has resulted in increased flowering, pollination and seed set.

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News from University Centre Reaseheath Insightful animal welfare conference Animal Science undergraduates gained an insight into the industry they are about to enter thanks to our annual Animal Welfare Conference. Organised by HE Faculty lecturers Alice Cowie and Finn McCully, the conference brought together influential speakers from centres of science and learning and covered subjects from the use of animals in organ transplantation to zoo welfare. Forrest Taylor, Lecturer in Animal Science, University Centre Reaseheath, gave a thought provoking talk on the use of animals in xenotransplantation (organ transplantation between different species). Krista McLennan, Lecturer in Animal Behaviour at the University of Chester, spoke on animal facial expressional communication and the pioneering research being carried out to apply this work to sharks. Claire Paton, from Podencos in Need Scotland, described ethical issues in canine rescue particularly involving the Podenco-type Spanish breeds. Jim Barrington, Animal Welfare Consultant, Countryside Alliance, suggested that traditional forms of countryside management could be more welfare-friendly than modern methods such as shooting. Geoff Hosey, world renown Professor in Biology, University of Bolton, highlighted the positive and negative implications of interactions between humans and animals and potential effects on animal welfare.

Leigh is the big cheese! There was cause for celebration at the Nantwich International Cheese Show when Leigh Vinnell was awarded Gold in the Best Student Cheesemaker category with a cheese produced by him for his employer, Wyke Farms in Somerset. Leigh, who is a Level 5 apprentice dairy technologist on our Eden programme, and two fellow Eden apprentices also produced a territorial cheese which took a silver award. Two further cheeses produced by Eden apprentices were awarded silver and bronze awards and a silver and two bronze awards went to cheeses produced by Level 3 Diploma in Food Technology students, proving we can hold our own against world class professionals. The Nantwich International Cheese

Show is the world’s largest cheese festival, attracting 5,500 entries and taking five hours of judging. All classes are highly competitive and winning entries must be outstanding in flavour, texture and taste. Eden apprentices also gained invaluable experience by stewarding during judging day. They were able to learn from top judges, network with industry professionals, gain an overview of global dairy manufacturing and to taste some of the best cheeses in the world!

Fantastic exam results for floristry

Our floristry undergraduates had a great reason to celebrate after achieving an almost 100% pass rate in their (ICSF) Level 4 Higher Diploma in Floristry. We also received great feedback after hosting the Level 4 Higher Diploma practical exam for candidates throughout the country. All our florists, from degree level to diploma, are now looking forward to an exciting show season starting in early June with the Manchester Flower Show. Our show team will join the green takeover of an area around St Anne’s Square and will help to bring a ‘wow’ factor to the iconic architecture for thousands of visitors. Keeping to the ‘flower power’ theme, we will be dressing a bus stop in Kings Street using the structural arch from our RHS Chelsea 2018 winning design. Our team will then move on to RHS Flower Show Tatton Park, where we will introduce the public to the magic of floristry with educational workshops.

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Focus on Further Education Student voice to the fore at conference Student delegates at our first ever Student Conference have been able to help shape Reaseheath’s future. Views shared with college leaders by the 50 delegates, who represented all aspects of our student body, will contribute directly to Reaseheath’s strategic direction. As well as providing rich feedback between students and management, the conference gave the delegates experiences to enhance their own personal development and disseminate to their peers. These included presentations by external keynote speakers on topics such as how to care for mental health and self esteem, achieve a good work-life balance, promote positive body image and avoid exam stress. Alumni Dave Shardlow and Katie Gibson, now both staff members, ran a workshop in which they shared their Reaseheath experiences and passed on advice. The delegates were highly engaged throughout and in the closing session were encouraged to share their thoughts and ask questions of Principal Marcus Clinton, Vice Principal Dave Kynaston, Chair of Governors David Pearson and Governor Karol Bailey. The conference, which was organised by a team led by Matt Gower (Assistant Principal Quality & Learner Services) and Emily Jewell (Quality and Standards Coach), received much positive feedback. Watch at


RAG raises funds for Diabetes UK A college PrideFest, supervising cannons at The Battle of Nantwich reenactment and a 25 mile walk along Cheshire’s Sandstone Trail are just some of the diverse activities raising funds for this year’s RAG charity Diabetes UK. Reaseheath’s community has pulled together enthusiastically to collect over £7,600 so far – and there are high hopes for a significantly higher figure by the close of the academic year. Led by our dynamic Student Association and supported by every department, activities have been organised throughout term time with a main emphasis on RAG Week. Students raised money by car parking, face painting and organising a photo booth at our Lambing Weekends

and will marshal classes at the Royal Cheshire Show. RAG Week includes a foam party, raft races on the college lake and a tractor pull. The final cheque will be handed over at our summer ball by Student Association members. Over the past 31 years we have raised over £300,000 for local charities! Our students have also raised nearly £1,000 for other charities including £678 from Public Services students undertaking their National Citizen Service.

Spotlight on outstanding students Students who made extra effort leading to achievement or progress were recognised at our latest ‘Student of the Term’ awards. All departments, including Maths and English, Health and Wellbeing and our HE Faculty are encouraged to put forward one outstanding student for these accolades. The winners are presented with their awards from Principal Marcus Clinton. The latest awards went to:

n Dan Richardson (Level 3 Extended Diploma in Agriculture) n Chloe Holford (Level 3 Technical Baccalaureate in Animal Management) n Emma Phillips (Level 3 Diploma in Bakery and Patisserie) n Jack Dudley (Level 3 Extended Technical Diploma in Forestry and Arboriculture) n Jordan Vaughan (Foundation Level 1 in Animal Care) n Kyle Nolan (Level 2 Diploma in Animal Care - nominated by Health and Wellbeing Service) n Lillie Shufflebotham (Level 2 Diploma in Horse Care) n Harry Morton (Level 3 Extended Diploma in Horticulture) n A rchie Hampson (Level 1 Diploma in Joinery)

n Patrick Carter (Level 2 Diploma in Agriculture – nominated by Maths and English Department) n Paddy Vaughan (Level 2 Diploma in Physical Activity) n Lewis Williams (Level 2 IMI Light Vehicle Maintenance and Repair) n A ndrea Holland (Foundation Degree in Zoo Management – nominated by HE faculty)

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Focus on Further Education Emotional reunion for lion and keeper Reaseheath zoo keeper Alan Woodward has had an emotional reunion with a lion he hand reared 12 years ago. Although Asiatic lion Tejas has spent almost all his life abroad, he has never forgotten his former keeper and greets Alan enthusiastically whenever he visits. Alan was a lion keeper at Chester Zoo in 2007 when Tejas was born and cared for him when he and his brother were rejected by their mother. The newborns required hand feeding every three hours throughout the day and night so Alan took Tejas home each evening, accompanied throughout by a film crew who were filming popular tv series ‘Zoo Days’ at Chester. Sadly Tejas’ brother did not survive but Tejas thrived and at five months, accompanied by Alan, he moved to Zoo Citadel in Besacon, Southern France, where he remained for eight years and produced three litters. Alan visited him three times and each time the lion recognised and greeted him immediately. Tejas then moved to Cologne Zoo, and again he was visited by Alan. He is now enjoying retirement at the Parc des Felins, south east of Paris, a zoological park dedicated to wild cats, where Alan was delighted to catch up with him again.

Sir David Attenborough sends handwritten message to students Students inspired by Sir David Attenborough have received a hand written letter from the great naturalist himself. Clair Cartwright, a Level 2 Diploma in Animal Care student who attributes her passion for wildlife to Sir David’s TV documentaries, suggested that her English Skills group should write to their idol inviting him to visit our Animal Centre and Zoo. More than 40 students composed letters and Course Manager Sam Sturgess posted them. A few weeks later a handwritten response from Sir David arrived, thanking the students

for their invitation but sadly declining it through pressure of his TV work. Although disappointed, Clair and her fellow students were thrilled to receive the letter and it will be displayed in our Animal Centre. Said Clair: “Sir David’s films inspired me from a very early age. He fuelled my passion for the natural world, ultimately leading me to study at Reaseheath. We will all treasure his letter.”

Student interpretation boards will enhance visitor experience Animal Management students have combined science and art to create educational interpretation boards for our zoo. The Level 3 Advanced Technical Extended Diploma students produced the eye-catching pieces of work to such a professional standard that Course Manager Hannah Goodwin recommended them for public display. The boards will be used to enhance our visitor experience at weekends and during school holidays when our zoo is open. The students were tasked with designing a piece of interpretation which would increase understanding of an environmental topic. Particularly outstanding projects presented interesting facts on tapirs, buzzards, royal pythons, civets and wallabies.

beyond expectation and better in some instances than you would find in many respected zoos. They will allow us to both further educate the public and to recognise the high standard of our students’ work.” Janet Kotze student said: “I’ve really enjoyed this module. It’s made me realise that when you show a story in an interesting and artistic way its message becomes more powerful and personal to the person reading it.”

Explained Hannah: “This year the students’ work has been well

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Watch at


Outstanding HOYS experience for equine students Our equine student arena party has continued to supply a stellar service to the Horse of the Year Show, the world’s most famous horse show. Thirty-eight Level 2 and 3 Diploma students supported the international show jumping course designers and other displays for the eighth consecutive year, proving indispensable to the smooth running of the five day action packed programme. The students, from both our Nantwich campus and from partner training centre, Croft End Equestrian Centre, also received unique health and

safety training and emergency drills alongside vets and paramedics – a superb addition to their CVs. Described as ‘exceptional’ by Olympic course designers Bob Ellis and Kelvin Bywater, our students enjoyed meeting elite riders, trainers and performers as they supported the world class show jumping, dressage, showing, Pony Club mounted games, scurry driving and equine entertainment. The team has been invited back for HOYS 2019.

Renovated arena a tribute to Tim Stockdale Our fabulous renovated outdoor arena has been officially opened in tribute to the late Olympic showjumper Tim Stockdale. Tim’s widow Laura performed the ceremony at a student run show which raised funds for the Tim Stockdale Foundation. Tim died one month after being diagnosed with cancer. He was passionate about equestrianism and many other sports and wanted to give talented young people the chance to reach their potential. The Stockdales have long connections to our Equestrian Centre, in particular offering work experience on their competition yard. The 60m x 20m arena, which has a new £60,000 surface, provides a superb warm up facility of particular benefit to the increasing number of British Dressage competitors attracted to our events. The arena, which is one of three at

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our Equestrian Centre, is also used by students and livery clients and may be booked by the public outside college hours. The show, which raised over £1,000, was run by Level 3 Diploma and Extended Diploma in Horse Management students studying equine event management. The students organised six showjumping classes and ran a raffle, charity auction and cake stall.

Top tips from Ros Canter Eventing enthusiasts had the privilege of learning top tips from World Champion event rider Ros Canter at a fun and educational demonstration held at our Equestrian Centre. The event was part of a tour which Ros undertook after winning team and individual gold medals at the World Equestrian Games in the USA. It was attended by hundreds of competitors, coaches and eventing fans. The evening was compered by Caroline Moore FBHS, British Eventing National Under 18 and Junior Team Coach, and was sponsored by Jump 4 Joy and Stierna Equestrian Sportswear.

Ros was joined by Heidi Coy, a British junior team and individual silver medallist. The two riders brought out six event horses at different stages of training and demonstrated exercises and techniques which would help them progress.

Ros also took time to chat to our students, advising that the secret of successful competing is to keep working hard, remain focused and make sure you enjoy it! Watch at


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Focus on Further Education National accolade for gamekeeping student Reaseheath’s Connah Baker has been recognised as the top gamekeeping student in the country. Connah was presented with the coveted Frank Jenkins Memorial Trophy at the Midland Game Fair. The award is presented annually by the National Gamekeepers Organisation and recognises the student who shows outstanding practical and theoretical skills and has the ability to be an ambassador for the sport. He received his trophy from Chairman of the National Gamekeepers’ Organisation, Liam Bell, along with jacket and trousers from outdoor clothing company Musto. Connah, who does not have a keepering background, completed his Level 3 Extended Diploma in Land and Wildlife Management with us along with extra industry awards. He is now working as an under keeper on an upland shoot. He aims to become head keeper on a grouse moor. Liam Bell said: “Connah’s qualifications, commitment and practical skills set him above the other candidates. He is a credit to the gamekeeping staff at Reaseheath, who have prepared him well for entry into the gamekeeping world.” Watch at


Support for fisheries’ future Fisheries Management students have been working with the Environment Agency (EA), helping to improve aquatic habitats and make fishery businesses more sustainable. This mutually beneficial partnership, established by Course Manager Jodie Cutler, allows our Level 3 Advanced Technical Extended Diploma in Aquatic Ecosystems and Fisheries Management students to carry out practical tasks and gain knowledge of fishery management by working alongside EA professionals, commercial fishery owners and managers. The EA helps commercial fisheries with their management, in turn improving

the sport offered and increasing income and worth. Activities can include regular sampling of water for excess nitrates, health and disease monitoring and the netting, removal and transportation of coarse fish to different ponds. Our students play a useful role at locations throughout Cheshire and beyond, particularly when a large number of fish need netting, weighing and checking for health problems such as fungus.

Students gain industry insight Forestry and arboriculture students have gained valuable insights into the industry they are about to enter thanks to our well established links with industry professionals, who support our programmes with educational presentations and workshops. The students learned about careers in commercial forestry during a lecture from Adam Todd, Future Foresters Officer for the Royal Forestry Society. Level 3 Advanced Technical Extended Diploma students heard Adam describe the wide range of options in the commercial sector and questioned him about how the industry may change in the future. They also looked at the more unusual tree species on campus.

spoke about pests and diseases and signs and symptoms of ill health in trees. They also outlined the Forestry Commission’s ‘Keep it Clean’ campaign and encouraged students to think about the different ways disease can be spread, particularly by equipment and transport which has not been thoroughly cleaned between sites.

The same department welcomed members of the Forestry Commission England’s Tree Health Team, who delivered a highly relevant presentation on the importance of biosecurity to maintain tree health. Biosecurity Officer Becki Gawthorpe and Tree Health Officer Barnaby Wylder

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Students learn about diversity in sport Sport and foundation students learned about inclusivity in sport during community development programmes delivered by the Shark Community Trust.

Chatsworth show garden opportunity Level 3 Diploma in Horticulture students will be learning new skills alongside garden designer and RHS Ambassador Jamie Butterworth as he builds his show garden for RHS Chatsworth Flower Show in June. The opportunity was offered to us because student teams help to maintain the gardens at the World of Wedgwood in Staffordshire. Wedgwood is the headline show partner at RHS Chatsworth Flower Show and its show garden is to be designed and built by Jamie. As a reward for their hard work, our students have been invited to take part in the build and to help on the stand during the show.

In celebration of Wedgwood’s 260th anniversary, the Wedgwood Garden at Chatsworth will illustrate RHS founder John Wedgwood’s vision of using the power of horticulture and plants to connect people and unite communities. Jamie and his design and build partners Richard Keys and Ruth Gwynn visited college to talk our students through this exciting project.

Invaluable career tips for students Public services students preparing for careers in the uniformed services receive invaluable advice from visiting professionals. Representatives from Cheshire Police, the Royal Navy and the Army, along with guest speakers from other sectors such as the Prison Service, join our students to offer positive advice and help them make good decisions on their future careers. As well as outlining the opportunities available, the sessions include psychometric and fitness tests so students can be fully prepared for their entry assessments. Some students

gain work experience thanks to networking with these professionals.

The Trust is the charitable arm of Sale Sharks, a professional English Premiership rugby union club, and the programmes were delivered by trainers from its inclusivity and diversity unit. Our students took part in rugby based wheelchair activities which allowed them to experience disability sport for themselves. The sessions helped them to recognise barriers which athletes with disabilities may face and also how to adapt sporting activities for those with disabilities. These skills will be particularly useful to those who progress into a coaching career. The sessions were delivered by Vicky Irwin, Community Development Manager, and Georgie Perris-Redding, Disability and Inclusion Co-ordinator. Dan Jones, a Level 2 Adventure Sports student, said: “I’ve never done this type of activity before and while it’s helped me to appreciate the difficulties disabled athletes face, it’s also been good seeing the opportunities available to them.”

Our students also gain ‘behind the scenes’ experiences by helping Cheshire Police in crowd control training and joining the action at an army ‘look at life’ residential camp. Many also choose to complete Duke of Edinburgh awards. A high percentage of students progress onto degrees as these can accelerate promotion in this sector.

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Focus on Further Education Harry wins Next Generation Shepherd award Agricultural student Harry Lyons proved he has outstanding allround industry skills by taking one of the top awards at a Next Generation shepherding competition, run by the Central Region of the National Sheep Association (NSA). Harry, a Level 3 Extended Diploma student, won the ‘Under 21’ title and was second overall in the highly competitive event, held at Bakewell Agricultural Centre. The Next Generation initiative supports innovative, enthusiastic and professional young people in the sheep industry. Harry has qualified for the NSA Next Generation Shepherd national finals, to be held in 2020, and also took home £250 in prize money. Competitors had to prove they had the knowledge and practical skills to make successful commercial shepherds by completing different elements from the industry. These included demonstrating correct techniques in belly clipping and veterinary procedures, selecting butcher’s lambs, choosing rams for breeding, and handling all terrain vehicles. The competitors also completed a written paper on flock management. Reaseheath Agriculture Course Manager James Bickerton, who ran the competition on behalf of NSA Central Region, confirmed the competitors’ standard of skills was exceptionally high.

Full marks for food study tour A visit to a goat dairy farm, a tour of edible plants at the Eden Project and a chance to sample cheese in the largest cheddar cheese factory in Europe were just some of the varied highlights of a Cornish study tour enjoyed by our Level 3 Food Technology and Management students. Planned and delivered by Catering Manager Barry Horton and Course Manager Georgina Gibson, the trip gave our students the chance to appreciate current trends and diversification in the fast changing food industry and to understand the importance of industry links and networking. Standout moments in this action packed trip included watching the process of clotted cream production, seeing the development of the traditional Cornish pasty into more modern versions and

looking at fermentation and casking techniques at St Austell’s brewery, Cornwall’s oldest brewery. They also visited Dairy Crest’s Davidstow Creamery for a tour, presentation and tasting session, tried field cooking and enjoyed a beach barbecue. The students gave this trip full marks, saying it gave them the chance to learn about each other as well as about their industry.

NFU President delivers Brexit view Agriculture students had the opportunity to discuss the positive and negative impact of Brexit and how the deal could affect their industry with NFU President Minette Batters. Minette delivered a balanced view on the immediate and long term future of British farming during a visit to campus which included a Q&A session with Level 3 and degree level students.

Minette toured our commercial farm, industry standard Food Centre and Advanced Engineering and Agri Tech Centre during her visit.

While a ‘no deal’ scenario would be detrimental to the farming industry, she said that a positive result would bring opportunity for change and that Reaseheath students, as next generation farmers, would embrace the challenge by connecting further with technology.

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Apprenticeship Awards

Alex Harley

Andrew Sharpes

Guy Wilkinson

Apprentice stars recognised The achievements of apprentices who gained their qualifications with us in the last academic year were highlighted at our Apprenticeship Awards. We also celebrated the benefits that skilled apprentices bring to businesses through increased productivity and workforce succession. The Reaseheath Group, which includes DART Training in Derbyshire, is one of the country’s leading apprentice trainers and works in partnership with hundreds of large, medium and small employers. We currently train around 1,500 apprentices and an impressive 97% who achieve their qualification continue into permanent roles and management.

n Best Plant Maintenance Apprentice: Alex Harley (Wrightway Plant Glazing and Repairs, Ellesmere Port)

Aemillia Nicholson with employer Jacqueline Smith

n Best Vehicle Parts Apprentice Harriet Simpson (RW Marsh, Nottinghamshire) n Best Horticulture Apprentice Richard Peate (Oswestry Golf Club) n Best Functional Skills Achievement Rebecca Dobing, Jonathan Swindells, Sam Page.

Top honours went to Intermediate Apprentice of the Year Adam Trigg, a shepherd with a high level of responsibility, and Advanced Apprentice of the Year Ben Graham, a joiner recognised for his progression through the trade levels.

Richard Peate with Phil Pearson, Group Development Director APS

Other principle winners were: n Best Butchery Apprentice Lucy Rowlinson (Grants Butchers, Crewe) n Best Engineering Apprentice Liam Abbotts (Bombardier Transportation, Crewe)

Kelsie Heafey

Liam Abotts

Watch at bit.ly/RHC-AdamTrigg

n Best Agricultural Apprentice Adam Trigg (Wheatsheaf Farm, Congleton) n Best Equine Apprentice Kelsie Heafey (Oakhanger Riding and Pony Club Centre) n Best Joinery Apprentice: Andrew Sharpes (Conran Homes, Knutsford) n Best Bricklaying Apprentice Guy Wilkinson (Faber Construction, Stafford) n Best Animal Care Apprentice Aemillia Nicholson (Quintessential Quarters, Staffordshire) n Best Motor Vehicle Apprentice Jack Elliot (Tunnel Motors, Northwich) Top apprentices Ben Graham and Adam Trigg

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Apprenticeships Industry support continues for apprenticeships The next generation of highly skilled apprentice construction plant technicians have received their final awards. Advanced apprentices from all over the country were joined by employers to celebrate a 100% success rate on the completion of their Level 3 Advanced Apprenticeship in Construction Plant Maintenance. The technicians work for leading companies including A-Plant, Scot JCB, Greenshields JCB, Watlings JCB, Gunn JCB, TC Harrison JCB, Banner Plant, The GAP Group, Clee Hill Plant, Arnold Plant Hire, A P Webb Plant Hire, Ruttle Plant and D Morgan. Many employers are long standing supporters of the training programme and supply us with cutting edge machinery and equipment. Individual awards went to:

n Apprentice of the Year: Harry Stoddart (Scot JCB, Carlisle) n Top Academic Apprentice: Tom Farmer (A-Plant, Bodmin) n Top A-Plant Apprentice: Tyler Lloyd (A-Plant, Newcastle) n Top JCB Franchise Apprentice: Phil Sutcliff (Greenshields JCB, Farnham) n Best Practical Student: Daniel Lewis (Arnold Plant Hire, Stockport) n Banner Plant Award for Endeavour: Louis Dorricott (JCB, Leighton Buzzard) n The Apprentices’ Apprentice: Joe Asquith (Towny Branford, Keighley).

Watch at bit.ly/RHC-Apprentice-Lucy

Lucy sets the highest standard Trailblazer Lucy Rowlinson set the bar impressively high for the newly restructured butchery apprenticeship by achieving the top grade. Lucy, who was among the first tranche of UK apprentices to complete the redesigned FDQ Diploma in Professional Butchery Level 2, became the first female apprentice to be awarded ‘Pass with Excellence’. She was also awarded Reaseheath’s ‘Butchery Apprentice of the Year’ title and her employer, John Major of Grants Butchers, became Reaseheath’s ‘Small Employer of the Year’ for his support in applying the new standards and for

hosting employer visits to share best practice. Lucy is aiming to be as successful as her great-grandfather, a talented butcher and shop owner. John Major says: “We are extremely proud of Lucy on her huge achievement and the passion she shows for butchery. She is not only helping to raise standards in the industry but contributes to the growth and success of Grants Butchers.”

Rail maintenance specialist quadruples apprentice intake Rail maintenance specialist A P Webb Plant Hire, awarded Reaseheath’s ‘Large Employer of the Year’, has quadrupled its intake of apprentice engineers thanks to a tailormade programme and recruitment support from Reaseheath Training. The expanding Staffordshire company helps to keep the nation’s trains running by providing solutions to track maintenance problems for Network Rail and other principal contractors.

and diagnostic training in the classroom and in the college workshops and continue learning operating skills at AP Webb’s training school. All are on track to progress onto a Level 3 programme.

To remain at the forefront of such a demanding and fast paced industry, the company required a new breed of dual skilled rail plant engineer-operators, able to both fix and operate complex rail track machinery under strict time restraints. Reaseheath Training structured an accredited Level 2 training programme specifically for AP Webb apprentices. Currently 13 apprentices receive theory

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Bombardier partnership advances apprenticeship training Rail giant Bombardier Transportation is working in partnership with Reaseheath Training to continue advancing the way it trains apprentices. The company is the UK leader in the maintenance and overhaul of rail vehicles and needs a steady intake of highly skilled rail engineers at its heavy engineering site at Crewe. Apprenticeships are crucial to its recruitment, as the programmes attract new talent into the industry and allow bespoke technical skills to be handed down to the next generation. Bombardier Transportation has built up a successful training structure with us over the past six years and currently has 18 apprentices in training. Its latest tailormade programme

is a Level 3 Rail Engineering apprenticeship, a challenging and multi skilled framework encompassing electric, hydraulic and pneumatic systems aimed at turning out skilled professionals in line with the government’s new skills standards. Liam Barnett is a former Level 3 apprentice who is now a technical support technician with the company and plans to study for a degree to progress his career. Watch at bit.ly/RHC-Bombardier-Liam

Modern cars for motor vehicle students Our student motor vehicle technicians are learning their trade on the latest road cars thanks to the generosity of local automotive company Car Transplants. The company is the leading car breaker in the northwest and also specialises in repairable vehicles and safe car disposal. Each year it supplies our Motor Vehicle department with modern road cars from a variety of ranges, models and styles, enabling our students to develop relevant skills and knowledge of current technology and systems. The students work on the vehicles in Reaseheath’s automative workshop,

which has ten vehicle ramps, modern diagnostic equipment and a simulated MOT standard test lane. They also train on static engines supplied by Car Transplants. Managing Director of Car Transplants, Mark Schofield, said: “We actively support Reaseheath’s motor vehicle department because the next generation of motor vehicle technicians are the future life blood of our industry.”

Engineers celebrate completion of apprenticeship Thirty-seven skilled agricultural engineering technicians were joined by their employers at a celebration to mark the completion of their apprenticeships. The technicians, who train with us on a block release basis, are employed by the UK and Ireland dealer network for leading manufacturers such as CASE, New Holland, CLAAS and JCB. Recognised as one of the UK’s leading colleges for land based engineering, Reaseheath is a key training provider for these companies, which have considerable input into the programme to ensure it delivers the skills and technical knowledge they require. The technicians, who are selected by their employers for progression, study in Reaseheath’s new Advanced Engineering and Agri-Tech Centre and achieve an IMI Level 3 Diploma in Land Based Technology on completion. There are 150 technicians on this thriving three year programme. Individual awards went to: n Apprentice of the Year Harry James (Lloyd Ltd., Newcastle) n Best practical apprentice Matthew Jones (Pontesbury Tractors, Shropshire) n Best academic apprentice Rupert Hayes (Ernest Doe, Suffolk) n Award for Endeavour Jonathan Randon (Manns, Market Harborough) n Engine Project Award Louis Copeland (CLAAS Eastern, York) n Best JCB Apprentice Tom Jellis (Olivers, Luton).

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Industry News Farm forum helps students to plan their future ‘Seek out opportunities, use all connections, gain experience and strengthen your business acumen.’ This was the advice given to agriculture students at a ‘Question Time’ discussion on future careers in farming and food production. The event, sponsored by the Food, Drink & Agricultural Group of the Chartered Institute of Marketing and the Cheshire branch of the Institute of Agricultural Management, delivered valuable advice on the opportunities available in a changing industry. Over 80 undergraduates and Level 3 Extended Diploma students quizzed experienced advisors from across the supply chain. John Giles (Chair of CIM’s Food, Drink and Agricultural Group and Divisional Director at Promar International), Lizzie Bonsall (Holstein Identification Quality Manager, Holstein UK), Coral Russell (Crop Associations Manager, British Growers Association), Nikki McDougall (EU Business Manager, Genus) and Alick Jones (Regional Director, AMC) spoke on topics including fresh ideas for farming, opportunities with technology, funding for a new business and how the government may support the food and farming industry in the future. Summing up, John Giles confirmed: “With a Reaseheath qualification you are well on your way to getting a good job. Your opportunities are limitless.”

C&G award for vet assistant

A Reaseheath trained Veterinary Care Assistant has been awarded a prestigious City & Guilds Medal for Excellence for her outstanding portfolio and highly developed skills. Katie Ford works at the Alsager Vet Centre, part of The Willows Veterinary Group, where she completed her work placement as part of her studies. Medals for Excellence are awarded to students who demonstrate highly developed skills, outstanding knowledge, versatility and adaptability while studying on City & Guilds courses. Just 85 medals were awarded world-wide in 2018. Katie was also nominated for a Lion Award, given to the most talented medal winners.

Katie was put forward for her award by Course Manager Kate-Marie Jeffs, who recognised her passion, commitment and potential while she was studying for her C&G Level 2 Diploma for Veterinary Care Assistants. She plans to study for her Level 3 Diploma in Veterinary Nursing, enabling her to become a registered veterinary nurse. We are delighted that our new BSc (Hons) in Veterinary Nursing has been validated and will run from September.

Professional tips help florists flourish Floristry professionals received top tips on how to make their businesses flourish from customer service and sales guru Tim Huckabee, founder and president of FloralStrategies. Tim presented an insightful on-site training programme, offered through our floristry department, which featured best practice for modern retail florists. He was supported by Derek Woodruff, who leads the design teaching element at FloralStrategies.

This was the second time Tim has presented his training programme to students and business partners at Reaseheath, and both times the feedback has been very positive. See more at www.floralstrategies.com

Based in New York, Tim is famed throughout the industry for his effective business education and training and works with thousands of retail florists around the world. His Reaseheath presentation, to a packed audience of shop owners, qualified florists and Level 3 Diploma students, showed how superior service and effective communication to customers could drive up sales and profits.

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Event celebrates regional food producers A business development event held at Reaseheath University Centre celebrated the region’s quality food products and explored commercial opportunities to boost customer demand.

Food Centre achieves coveted food safety awards Reaseheath’s Food Centre has proved it continues to operate at the highest industry standards by becoming the first educational institution in the world to achieve Grade AA certification for food safety from the British Retail Consortium. This is the highest possible benchmark for best practice in food manufacture. The quality mark was approved after an exacting audit of processes and procedures showed that manufacturing systems in our food factory continue to operate under highly controlled conditions and to the highest industry standards. Areas inspected included food safety procedures, hygiene standards, traceability of food ingredients and recording, control and management systems. Further recognition followed with the

Red Tractor award. This is the most comprehensive farm and food safety standards scheme in the UK and covers animal welfare, food safety, food traceability and environmental protection.

It is proof that the food and drink we produce meet the most comprehensive and respected global standards and again shows that we apply and follow the same exacting standards as major industry, ensuring our students are fully prepared for working life.

Chefs dazzle with new jackets Our chefs are sporting smart white jackets thanks to a sponsorship from long established partners Harlech Food Service. Harlech supplies us with a wide range of frozen and chilled foods including bread, meat, vegetables, pies, baking ingredients and condiments which make up the majority of meals we sell through our food outlets. The company also supplies Reaseheath with cleaning products and disposable packaging and is assisting our drive to reduce plastic waste by providing biodegradable products such as takeaway boxes made from corn starch.

‘Future Food, Local Ambition’ attracted food producers and suppliers, farmers and business entrepreneurs. They heard influential experts discuss emerging procurement trends, such as increasing demand for sustainable and traceable foods, and how partnerships between food and procurement businesses could improve the region’s economy, enhance food security and encourage investment.

Opportunities offered through the Business Growth Programme, including tailored workshops, masterclasses and individual training from Reaseheath experts, were also outlined. This programme involves a consortium of training providers within the Cheshire and Warrington Local Enterprise Partnership area which support several hundred growing businesses. Guests also sampled products from local food and drink producers. Key speakers were BBC Food and Drink presenter Nigel Barden, former Managing Director of the Compass Group Ian Sarson and Rich Osborn, founder and CEO of Fresh Range. For more free public lectures see www.ucreaseheath.ac.uk/ public-lectures Watch at


to show our appreciation of our long standing partnership.” Reaseheath Catering Manager Barry Horton said: “I and the team would like to thank Harlech for this generous gesture. Our chefs do a brilliant job in preparing and serving between 1000 and 1300 hot meals daily and we are delighted to recognise their professionalism with these new uniforms.”

Harlech has sponsored the bespoke jackets for seven of our chefs. Harlech Sales Development Manager Alex Huxley said: “We like to support valued customers such as Reaseheath College, and this seemed an ideal way

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Community News Agriculture students gain full marks for play area Our agriculture students earned a massive ‘thank you’ from local youngsters after helping to transform a play area at a preschool nursery. Children at The Goslings Pre-School, based at Winterley Methodist Church, can now spend valuable time outdoors playing and learning thanks to our students’ support. The pre-school approached our agriculture department for help in clearing an unusable piece of ground and making it into an attractive, inviting and safe outdoor space. The students, from our Level 3 and Level 2 programmes, cleared overgrowth and moved a shed into a more convenient position. They also dug up the existing grass area, re-laid turf, levelled and laid hard-core for a new paved area and built raised flower beds. Kim Minshall-Wilde, Manager of The Goslings Pre-School, said: “What Reaseheath’s students and staff achieved in just a few weeks was incredible and will make a huge difference to us. It’s really important that our children have access to outdoors where they can play freely and safely and learn about growing plants, fruit and vegetables. The area will also be invaluable to other members of the community who use the church.”

Pupils gain tips from Crewe Alexandra apprentices Sporty pupils from two Nantwich primary schools gained playing tips from Crewe Alexandra Football Club apprentices at football tournaments arranged through Reaseheath College. The tournaments are part of an assessment for the apprentices, who are studying for an academic qualification with us alongside their fulltime training programme with the club.

Reaseheath has been working in partnership with Crewe Alex for over 10 years to provide an all-round education for the club’s apprentices, who gain some of the best grades in the country.

Pupils from Millfields Primary School took part in their tournament at the Crewe Alex Academy training ground adjacent to our campus and the apprentices ran a similar event at Highfields Academy. Those who took part received tickets to see Crewe Alexandra’s First Team in action.

The apprentices study part-time at college for a BTEC Level 3 Diploma in Sports (Performance and Excellence). Subjects for study include coaching, sports massage, analysis of sports performance and technical and tactical skills in sport.

Pupils rise to Junior Cake-Off challenge Secondary school pupils rose to the occasion when competing in a Junior Cake-Off competition run by our bakery department. Teams from schools across the region were challenged to bake and decorate a cake with a Spring theme. Twenty-one finalists from Years 9 and 10 decorated nine cakes, with themes ranging from Easter bunnies and chicks to bumble bees and flowers. The young bakers brought in their pre-baked cake and had two hours to create their masterpieces in our industry standard bakery. The competition was judged by professionals Carol McFarland of Sugar and Crumbs and Natalie Parker from Immaculate Confections.

Second place went to Lily, Georgia and Louisa, (Prenton High School, Wirral) who shared a £75 voucher for their cake featuring two little ducks. Emily and Cara, (Newcastle Academy), took third place and a £50 voucher for their blue unicorn cake. The competition was so popular that there are plans to repeat it next year.

The winner was Krystal, (Sir William Stanier School, Crewe) with an artistic design of a rabbit digging a burrow. She was awarded a £100 voucher for herself and two iPads for her school.

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Military veterans helped to find next career path The sixteenth cohort of military veterans are learning new skills on our ground-breaking property maintenance course. The veterans gain skills in bricklaying, plastering, wall tiling, decorating, joinery and plumbing leading to a Level 1 Certificate in Property Maintenance. They also take a Level 1 Award in Health and Safety which allows them to apply for their Construction Skills Certification Scheme card, a requirement to work in the building industry. We deliver the training in partnership with armed forces training charity Building Heroes, which celebrated its 500th graduate in March. Over 90% of graduates go into

employment or self employment, or train further in the construction trades. We were the second college nationwide to join this exciting programme and have trained 136 veterans so far. The veterans have enjoyed other challenges as part of their Reaseheath experience. One team completed a sponsored climb to the summit of Snowdon accompanied by Head of Construction Andy Gould, appropriately carrying a bag of cement. They raised £4,000 for the retraining programme.

Department pulls together to help the hungry Foundation studies lecturers have sent hundreds of items to Nantwich Foodbank after deciding to donate one item a day throughout Lent. The whole department followed lecturer Julie Gray’s suggestion that they put aside one item a day for 40 days to give to members of the community in need. The result was 15 shopping bags packed with tins of vegetables, pasta, long life milk, fruit juice, coffee and personal hygiene and sanitary items. The lecturers also donated 25 much appreciated Easter eggs. Their actions followed revelations earlier this year that foodbank use in the UK has reached its highest rate on record and that millions of families are struggling to feed their children.

The donations were gratefully received by representatives from Nantwich FoodBank, who make up food parcels containing nutritionally balanced, nonperishable foods to last for three days.

Foundation students ‘go wild’ for work skills Our Foundation students developed their employability skills by volunteering on a community project with Cheshire Wildlife Trust (CWT).

The students took part in the ‘Go Wild - Get Fit’ project as part of their Career Development Pathway which prepares them for work experience and future careers. They spent a total of six days at Marbury Country Park helping to make a community garden more accessible to people and wildlife, and also helped with maintenance at the Owley Wood reserve. The students painted and put up bird boxes, cleared overgrown beds, planted willow whips, repaired fences and created pathways in a community garden at Marbury, which is owned by Cheshire West and Chester Council and managed by CWT. As well as developing their confidence and ability, they enjoyed wildlife walks, learned to identify birds and took part in mindfulness sessions. They also appeared on an ITV programme on the health benefits of working outside! Katie Greenwood, CWT’s Natural Wellbeing Project Manager, said: “Reaseheath’s Foundation students have been the perfect group to launch this project. They have been a fantastic team who have completed every task with enthusiasm.” Watch at


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Alumni News Sam Walton

Level 3 Diploma in Agriculture 2008 Agriculture alumnus Sam Walton has enjoyed global travel thanks to a scholarship run by Reaseheath and the Cheshire Agricultural Society. Sam was one of two young agriculturists to be awarded John Platt Travel Scholarships. Worth £2000, the scholarships allow the recipients to fund international travel and research which will benefit Cheshire’s farming community. Sam works at The Farm at Tatton Park, one of the National Trust’s leading tourist attractions, where he runs the pedigree herd of Red Poll cattle and interacts with some 80,000 visitors a year. He was Assistant Dairy Herd Manager for the college dairy herd before moving to his present position. Passionate about educating the public in food production and the wider management of the countryside, Sam used his scholarship to visit New Zealand to investigate innovative and transferable ideas for agri-tourism and diversification. The John Platt scholarship is in memory of John Platt, a former Chair of Reaseheath Governors and former Chairman, President and Honorary Life Warden of the Cheshire Agricultural Society. It is awarded annually to young people who work in agricultural or related sectors. For further details see www.reaseheath.ac.uk/ john-platt-scholarship Watch at


Adi Thomas Level 3 Diploma in Floristry 2011 Contemporary florist Adi Thomas was awarded a coveted gold medal and the top award for Best Exhibit in The Flower School at last year’s RHS Flower Show Tatton Park. Adi, who is Director of Verdure Floral Design in Manchester, won the accolade with his much admired display ‘Dreams of India’ featuring a stunning elephant decorated with thousands of flower heads. Since he studied with us Adi has proved he is both creative and a successful businessman by establishing an award winning web based floral design business which has a reputation throughout the north west for its outstanding wedding and corporate event flowers. He is a regular exhibitor and award winner at RHS Flower Show Tatton Park.

Balazs Szalisznyo

Foundation Degree in Dairy Technology (Eden) 2016 A graduate from our industry linked dairy technology programme, Balazs has achieved a respected professional qualification in lean management. Balazs received his Six Sigma Green Belt Award, which bestows Fellowship of The Manufacturing Institute, at a prestigious ceremony in Manchester. Six Sigma Green Belt is a methodology used for statistical analysis in Lean or Continuous Improvement projects and is held in high regard by organisations which strive to meet the highest quality, best delivery times and lowest operational costs.

annum which could double in the future. Balazs has now joined our commercial team as a Food Industry Trainer and continues to disseminate his knowledge.

Balazs completed his qualification, which involves an intense training course from The Manufacturing Institute and a work based project using statistical analysis and other Six Sigma tools, while a Continuous Improvement Facilitator with Muller Milk & Ingredients. His project, which focused on the control of butterfat values in potted cream, is saving his company nearly £43,000 per

Stay connected! We love to keep in touch with former students through our growing alumni community. Whether you’re continuing with studies, entering employment or progressing in your career, please let us know how you’re getting on.

Find out more at: www.reaseheath.ac.uk/alumni

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Watch at

Reaseheath at a glance...



Further and Higher Education and Apprenticeships

Charlotte Daniels BSc (Hons) Zoo Management 2015 Charlotte never wavered from her ambition to be involved in chimp conservation and used her time as an animal science undergraduate to work towards her goal. She is now one of the primate care team at Monkey World Ape Rescue Centre, Dorset. Describing her three years at Reaseheath as ‘fantastic’, Charlotte took advantage of every opportunity to gain valuable work experience. She became a casual keeper at our campus zoo, which earned her some excellent references, and also completed an industry placement at Yorkshire Wildlife Park which led to a seasonal job offer. Another seasonal post followed,

this time at Woburn Safari Park, and Charlotte then spent six months volunteering at a chimp rescue centre in Cameroon, West Africa, helping to look after 72 chimpanzees in the depths of a rain forest. She may do a Master’s degree in the future, but for now she’s very happy looking after the chimps she regards as her friends!

Jess Irving

BSc (Hons) Equine Science 2014; MRes Clinical Sciences 2015 (University of Liverpool) An equine science graduate who went on to work as a bioveterinary scientist, Jess is now back at University Centre Reaseheath as an HE Lecturer and Course Manager. She so enjoyed her time with us that she jumped at the chance to join our lecturing team and is now giving our undergraduates the benefit of her knowledge and experience.

Jess, who lectures in Animal Science with Equine specialism, gained a first class BSc (Hons) in Equine Science with us followed by a Master’s Research Degree in Clinical Sciences at the University of Liverpool.

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Adventure Sports Agriculture Agricultural Engineering Animal Management Business and Events Management Construction Countryside and Wildlife Management, Arboriculture, Fish Management, Game Keeping Entry and Foundation Learning Equine Floristry Horticulture Food Technology Motor Vehicle Public Services Sport

n STUDENTS Further Education: 2,300 Higher Education: 800 Apprenticeships and work based learning: 1,500 Residential students: 900 Students using college transport: 1,500 n STAFF Total Staff: 604 n ESTATE College grounds: 21 hectares Owned and rented farm land: 252.52 hectares Land leased to Crewe Alexandra Football Club: 6 hectares

She then headed up a team of scientists at the Veterinary Tissue Bank in North Wales, the only facility of its kind in Europe, before deciding to return to academia. The team specialised in allogenic bone grafts and tissues for orthopaedic and reconstructive surgeries, and culturing autologous mesenchymal stem cells for canine and feline osteoarthritis.

n INCOME Academic year 2017/18: £33.3 million n FACILITIES On-site accommodation for up to 1,000; six catering outlets; student lounge/bar; learning resource centre/ library; HE study area; two sports halls, climbing wall, multi gym, sports pitches; equestrian centre, campus farm, campus zoo, licensed food factory.

Rick Tomlinson

Foundation Degree Garden and Landscape Design 2013; BSc Landscape Design and Management 2014; MSc Landscape Architecture 2015 (Manchester Metropolitan University) Although he already had his own successful landscape maintenance business, Rick felt he wanted to learn more and tried one of our short garden design courses. He enjoyed the subject and the experience so much that he enrolled onto our Foundation Degree in Garden and Landscape Design, which included helping to design and build our award winning show garden at RHS Flower Show Tatton Park.

He completed a further year of studies with us to achieve his BSc in Landscape Design and Management and followed this with a Master’s Degree in Landscape Architecture.

Rick is now a Senior Landscape Manager with The Environment Partnership, a multi disciplinary environmental consultancy in Warrington, and a Chartered Member of the Landscape Institute.

Watch at


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Come and see us! The carnival atmosphere of our Family Festival, the thrill of meeting newborns at our Lambing Weekends and the chance to meet some of the friendly residents at our zoo are just some of the reasons visitors pour onto campus each year.

Our zoo is open during most school holidays and weekends and we have a zoo school for young people. We even do birthday parties and ‘Keeper for the Day’! There are competitions at our Equestrian Centre most weekends and University Centre Reaseheath holds a series of fascinating guest lectures which are free to the public. Then there are regular open days for potential students and taster events for specific subjects like construction, bakery or floristry... or you could book in your dog for a pampering session in our grooming parlour or use our new sports facilities. We’re also out and about on the show circuit throughout the summer.

To find out what we have in store over the next few months visit www.reaseheath.ac.uk and click on the What’s On button.

www.reaseheath.ac.uk Reaseheath College, Nantwich Cheshire CW5 6DF | 01270 613242

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Profile for Reaseheath College

Grassroots issue 31  

Grassroots issue 31