LeSoCo / LeSoCo

History: Lewisham College was founded in 1993, and merged with Southwark College on August 1 2012. The newly merged colleges now form Lewisham Southwark College.

Address: Four main sites in Lewisham, Deptford and Southwark, south east London, at Lewisham Way, Drummond Street, Deptford Church Street and The Cut, four miles from the City area of London.

Ambience: Extremely urban. The college prides itself on helping to develop the whole person, not just focusing on academic study, and celebrates the diversity of its students, whatever their ethnic, cultural, and economic background.

Who's the boss? Carole Kitching is principal.

Prospectus: 0800 834 545 or view it online here.

UCAS code: L40

What you need to know

Easy to get into? Expect an interview and an audition for some courses. Due to the wide range of qualifications available, entry requirements vary and there is a course to meet most levels of expertise.

Foundation degrees: Business information technology, urban regeneration and community development, early years and music/music technology. Validated by the University of Greenwich, London South Bank University, and University of East London.

Vital statistics: Over 20,000 students taking some 3,500 vocational and academic courses. Lots of mature students; the average age of learners is 29.

Added value: The college is recognised as one of the most employer-responsive colleges in the country. In December 2007, the former Lewisham College was one of only three London colleges to be awarded the recently introduced Training Quality Standard from the Learning and Skills Council. The college has also received additional accreditation for vocational excellence in information and communication technologies. Facilities include computers, music stations, a theatre, a television studio, two training restaurants and a gym.

Any accommodation? None provided by the college.

Cheap to live there? Being south east London, it is relatively inexpensive in comparison with the rest of the city. Rooms in shared flats are anywhere between £75 and £120 per week, averaging at £90.

Transport links: All campuses are accessible by car, bus, tube, train and Docklands Light Railway (DLR).

Fees: Vary by course and qualification. Foundation degrees cost £4,800 per year.

Bursaries: None offered by the college, but students may be able to apply via validating universities.

The fun stuff

Nightlife: Around the campuses there are a mix of cafés and restaurants. The Ministry of Sound is nearby at Elephant and Castle and the bright lights and loud noises of central London are only a bus trip away.

Sporting reputation: Fitness centre available to all students in the evenings and at weekends.

Glittering alumni: Daniel and Natasha Bedingfield, singing siblings; Bianca Jagger, human rights activist.