FURY AS BOTH MOSS AND BARCLAY ROUND ON GOVERNMENT FOR COLLEGE DELAYS

PUBLISHED: 18:38 23 March 2009 | UPDATED: 08:57 02 June 2010

Steve Barclay, furious at Government delays

Steve Barclay, furious at Government delays

BOTH the MP for NE Cambs and the man who hopes to succeed him have issued fresh condemnations of the delays to building a new campus in the Fens. They voiced their concerns as the Learning and Skills Council warned colleges hoping to start work on new cam

BOTH the MP for NE Cambs and the man who hopes to succeed him have issued fresh condemnations of the delays to building a new campus in the Fens.

They voiced their concerns as the Learning and Skills Council warned colleges hoping to start work on new campuses to avoid spending any more money in developing projects until decisions have been reached.

Malcolm Moss, MP, and Steve Barclay, the prospective Parliamentary Conservative candidate, fear the Government is reneging on promises to build a better education for Fenland youngsters.

Their concerns follow the news that the Learning and Skills Council has postponed funding for a new campus at March for the College of West Anglia.

With work due to have started soon, Mr Moss says he has again written to the LSC "in strong terms regarding the impact any delays to the project will have to the area."

Mr Barclay described the uncertainty as "an absolute shambles" and said a new process of consultation promised by the LSC would only delay matters further.

"They are now not expected to have any set timetables for the new college," said Mr Barclay. "They are not giving a firm date for when we can expect building work to start."

He described the new campus as crucial for young people in Fenland to achieve their full potential.

"Labour seems to be able to find money for pointless cuts in VAT and is borrowing billions of pounds yet cannot find funding for training for young people in the midst of a recession," said Mr Barclay.

He said the Government should explain why they can continue to give extra funding to Scotland and northern cities "yet not fund essential projects in NE Cambridgeshire".

Phil Head, director of property and infrastructure at the LCS, said he hoped to make an announcement on timescales shortly. He advised colleges not to spend money on development costs "until the strategy for prioritising projects has been completed".

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