College ready to move on
One hundred years after moving into its Walton Street building, Ruskin College is preparing to move out for good.
It will be transferring all its activities on to its site in Headington after a £17m construction project is completed.
The building project at its Dunstan Road campus, which began in March 2011, includes offices, classrooms, seminar rooms and a brand new library.
College principal Prof Audrey Mullender said: “There is a certain amount of sadness at having to move but we are going to state-of-the-art facilities, so we are also excited.
“It is quite a complex process and the library included 40,000 volumes which have to be moved.
“The construction has all gone to schedule though.”
Prof Mullender said the move would take place during September and she expects the college to be up and running by October 3, when inductions for some of the courses begin.
Restoration work has also been carried out on the Grade II-listed Rookery which is one of the buildings at the Old Headington site.
The Walton Street building, which was completed in 1912 and has been the college’s headquarters since, has been sold to Exeter College.
Ruskin, which was founded in 1899, is a residential college which provides education for adults with few or no qualifications. Over an academic year it will educate about 4,000 students, some of whom will be on longer courses such as degrees, though they won’t necessarily be based at just one site.
Prof Mullender said: “It has never made much sense for us to be on two sites.
“We hope to save around £100,000 a year by moving to one site. For example, we currently have three kitchens.
“The facilities will be vastly improved and there will be disabled access so we can do everything we can for people who missed out on education.”
The college is still pursuing plans to build 150 homes on Ruskin Fields in Old Headington, a plan by some residents.