Animal Science Centre opened by Jackie Harris from Slimbridge

On Friday 8 November, Cirencester Sixth Form College officially opened their new £700,000 Animal Science Centre.

Jim Grant, Principal of Cirencester College welcomed students, staff, local dignitaries and employers to the centre.  The opening was also attended by staff from the Royal Agricultural University with whom the College work in partnership on foundation degrees in conservation, heritage, animal science and business.

“We are extremely proud of the new Animal Science Centre, this has been 15 years in the planning, since we first introduced Land based, Horse and Animal courses to the College,” said Jim. “ This new centre will give a fantastic opportunity for our Animal Management students to advance their knowledge and skills to progress on to a successful career in the sector.”

Jim introduced Jackie Harris, Project Manager of the Slimbridge Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust.  Jackie captivated the audience with her own journey from working in local government and supporting local charities to fulfilling her dream job as Project Manager at Slimbridge.

Jackie talked about the origins of Slimbridge, it’s founder Sir Peter Scott, the work he did and how it continues around the world today.  A recent project involves the rescuing of a small group of ‘little brown ducks’, called the Pochard duck, in Madagascar, who were thought to be extinct.  The Slimbridge team helped to set up a conservation system for the ducks in Madagascar which hopefully means that the species will go on to flourish.

The new 240m2 Animal Science Centre is fitted out with a specialist climate-controlled Reptile Room, a dedicated Mammal Room and classroom.  The building is surrounded by its own outdoor facilities where students will work with some of our small mammals.

As well as being used by the College’s Animal Management students, the new centre is also being utilised by our Animal Science and British Wildlife Conservation Foundation Degree students, delivered in partnership with the Royal Agricultural University.