Dudley's university park to offer 'top education without the debt', Lord Austin says

Dudley's sprawling new university park will enable people to receive a top quality education without being "saddled with huge debts", Lord Austin has said.

Lord Austin campaigned for a university park in the town when he was an MP
Lord Austin campaigned for a university park in the town when he was an MP

The former Dudley North MP said the £36 million campus, which is being built on land off Tipton Road, would "transform" the gateway into the town centre.

And he said it would give young people in the region the option of accessing degree-level qualifications without having to get into debt by attending traditional universities.

The university park, which is being run alongside Dudley College and the University of Worcester, will provide higher education courses for the health sector and life sciences. It will also host the very light rail test centre and the Black Country & Marches Institute of Technology.

It was given a major boost earlier this month when the project received £25m from the Government's Towns Fund.

Lord Austin, who campaigned for a university campus when he was an MP, said he was delighted to see the scheme move forward.

He said: "Dudley College is already the best college in the country, but the new university park will give 5,000 local people the chance to get degree-level qualifications and proper apprenticeships, better jobs and earn more money, hopefully without being saddled with huge debts like at traditional universities.

"It will help the local NHS train and recruit more nurses, support staff and technicians to look after the rest of us, support local businesses and enable us to attract new investment, new industries and good well-paid jobs in growing hi-tech areas of the economy, as well as regenerating a site that has been derelict for 50 years and transforming the gateway to Dudley."

The park is scheduled to open in Autumn 2024 and has been backed by Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick, who visited the site last week.

Dudley Council leader Patrick Harley said he expected the project to continue "at pace" now that funding had been secured.

Top Stories

More from the Express & Star

UK & International News