College of West Anglia / Tony Bennett


History: It started life as Norfolk College of Arts and Technology, but in 1998 it took over Cambridgeshire College of Horticulture and assumed its present title. Merged with Isle College in Wisbech in April 2006.

Address: Four campuses and a number of local learning centres spread across Cambridgeshire and Norfolk. Higher education courses take place at King's Lynn (the main campus), Wisbech, and Milton.

Ambience: King's Lynn is a busy historical market town, and the second largest in the area, after Norwich. The campus is central, and is a mixture of old and modern buildings. The Wisbech and Milton campuses offer agricultural and horticultural courses.

Who's the boss? David Pomfret, principal.

Prospectus: 01553 761 144; or download their prospectus here.

UCAS code: W35

what you need to know

Easy to get into? For the majority of degree courses, the requirements are two passes at A-level. The college runs a number of foundation degrees and HND courses, which look for academic or vocational experience whilst holding a Level 3 qualification.

Foundation degrees: Work-based management; applied animal behaviour; computer science; equine studies; motorsport engineering; eterinary bursing and applied animal behaviour; early years, childcare and education.

Vital statistics: The college has been offering higher education courses since the mid-80s and now has 300 full-time and 130 part-time students studying the 28 courses on offer, including HNDs and HNCs, foundation degrees and BA and BSc degrees, as well as a access courses and a part-time PGCE. Undergraduate programmes are franchised and validated by Anglia Ruskin University. A small but increasing number of international students from around 40 different countries.

Added value: Three Centres of Vocational Excellence (CoVEs) in sport, fitness and outdoor pursuits, retail and retail management and networking and computing. Prides itself on strong tutor-student relations and childcare facilities.

Teaching: A 2008 Ofsted inspection graded the College of West Anglia as ‘outstanding’.

Any accommodation? None provided by the college, but their accommodation team will be happy to help you find somewhere to stay, either in a privately rented flat or with a local family.

Cheap to live there? About average. Private rents are between £60 and £75 per week.

Transport links: The King's Lynn campus is five minutes walk from the train and bus stations, and is an hour by train from London. The Milton campus is just off the A10 near Cambridge.

Fees: 2012 will see a massive increase in course fees, with charges of £7,500 per year for full-time HNCs, HNDs, diplomas of higher education and foundation degrees. £8,300 will be the cost of full degrees with BA status.

Bursaries: Every full-time student who successfully completes each academic year is awarded £500.

the fun stuff

Nightlife: King's Lynn has some lively pubs and clubs for those who like to let their hair down.