King Edward VI College announced as key tenants of town centre development

Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council has announced a key tenant for their new Queens Road development – and it is just the latest signal of an exciting new future for the heart of the town.

Well-known local sixth form education provider King Edward VI College has taken up space in the extensive first floor accommodation.

Ropewalk Chambers comprises the first floor of the former Woolworths/T J Hughes store on Queens Road. The recently refurbished accommodation features a prominent entrance from the Ropewalk Mall providing 11,000 sq ft of modern flexible space. The refurbishment and conversion of the retail space was funded as part of the Government’s Towns Fund programme.

The result will be high-quality educational space in the heart of the town centre, where the College will be developing a centre of excellence for the Creative Arts and Tech Ed, as well as a Higher Education Centre for Nuneaton in the longer term.

The building, above the former Woolworths and TJ Hughes store in Queens Road, has been developed by the Borough Council as high-quality accommodation for a range of potential uses.

It features a fresh entrance in the Ropewalk Shopping Centre, and comprises a range of classroom, conference and meeting spaces, specialist music recording studio, drama performance space and, in the near future, an eSports training and competition arena for the town.

The shop space below, and the second floor of the building, will also have new tenants who are still to be announced.

North Warwickshire and South Leicestershire College has already confirmed that it will take space in the Abbey Street development nearby, also bringing an influx of students into the town centre.

Cllr Kristofer Wilson, leader of Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council, said: “The Borough Council is doing all it can to bring new activity and new life to the heart of our towns.

“This development will enable King Edwards’ students to study in high-quality, modern accommodation that is safe, accessible and close to other amenities. King Edward’s has been a vital part of our town’s great history, and now they will be playing a critical part in our vibrant future. Improving peoples’ life chances is essential if we are to level up Nuneaton and Bedworth.

“That is why I am so delighted we have this opportunity to work closely with our partner at King Edward’s and work hard to improve the educational attainment of our young people.”

Stuart Noss, Principal of King Edward VI College, said: “At a time where the college is becoming a regional centre of excellence for post-16 education and needs more space to manage its growing students numbers, we are hugely thankful to Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Council to have access to such a fantastic new space, a space in which we want to develop modern and exciting forms of education that will help put Nuneaton on the map.

“It’s a privilege and a pleasure for the college, who have had such support from the local community over the years, to be able to give something back to the town and help support the redevelopment of the town centre.”

Sean Farnell, Chair of the Nuneaton Town Deal Board, added: “This new space will provide King Edward VI College students with a great place to study in the heart of Nuneaton town centre.

“The Queens Road development is another sign that the area is undergoing a positive renaissance which will benefit those who live and work in the town as well as boost the local economy.”