Competition Winner Opens New Education Centre *Updated
Amelia French, a Year 8 pupil from South Wilts Grammar School, opened the new Diocesan Education Centre in Wilton today (16 October), together with the Bishop of Salisbury, Nicholas Holtam, and the Earl of Pembroke.
Amelia French cuts the ribbon, watched by the Bishop of Salisbury, Lord Pembroke, Sir Al and Chris Shepperd, Director of Education
The Bishop unveiled a plaque on the wall and Ms French, who won a competition to design the cover of a Jubilee Thank-You Card to the Queen, proudly cut the ribbon outside the front doors.
There were contributions from a number of schools and parishes, including the Sarum Academy Choral and Broad Chalke Choir, and several schoolchildren planted trees outside the centre.
The event was also attended by the Bishop of Ramsbury, Dr Edward Condry; the Bishop of Sherborne, Dr Graham Kings; the Mayor of Salisbury, John Collier; the Mayor of Wilton, Betty Belk; and the Chairman of the Diocesan Board of Education, Sir Al Aynsley-Green.
Ms French said, “It’s very exciting but it’s quite hard when the ribbon’s really hard to cut!” She added, “The whole feel of it- and the atmosphere- it’s really nice.”
Bishop Holtam said, “This lovely new Education Centre marks a new chapter in the life of our diocese. Training courses at this centre will encourage high standards in education and parish work, which is good news for everyone.”
Sir Al said, “Our hardworking staff have premises that are fit for purpose, training courses have already begun, and bookings are on the increase. Now the work begins in earnest as we support schools and parishes in providing quality support, advice and care.”
Most of the funding for the £1.7m purpose-built centre was secured by the Board of Education. Wiltshire Council supplied £0.7m in return for the team relocating from their previous premises in Pembroke Park School. As well as parishes and schools, the versatile building will be available for hire for businesses and other organisations.
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