New life breathed into former brewery

A PIECE of Calderdale's history will undergo a dramatic transformation.

The Maltings, part of the Fountain Head Brewery at Ovenden Wood, will be turned into a Centre for Lifelong Learning.

From September 2011 The Maltings will reopen with 15 classrooms offering courses in a college environment.

The site was acquired by Hipperholme and Lightcliffe School, who have masterminded the development of the historic building.

It will act as a centre for learning for pupils from schools throughout Calderdale to study subjects that are not available at all schools such as childcare, hospitality and catering principles, hair and beauty, sport and active leisure and manufacturing.

Pupils will be commissioned by their school to study at The Maltings with qualifications being registered with the pupil's parent school.

Hipperholme and Lightcliffe High School headteacher Anthony Smith said: "We were looking to expand the curriculum and course offer as well as space for students as a growing and successful school.

"The opportunity to make use of the Maltings was too good an opportunity to miss.

"The centre will bring investment to a fantastic community resource as well as allowing Hipperholme and Lightcliffe High School the opportunity to develop its own successful academic courses on its current site and high quality vocational courses in a stunning work place environment.

"This will allow the school to meet the needs of its community and the opportunities that the changing educational climate is bringing to all schools."

The former brewery has been used for education before. In 2008 The Maltings Independent School was set up as a primary school.

However, it was forced to close in 2008 after being open for just one term as the economic recession took hold.

The site will also house the Fountain Springs Day Nursery, which will offer 60 places to young children from across Calderdale.

Other services at the centre will include a gym, fitness suite, assembly halls, a catering/hospitality venue and a cafe and restaurant.

* Would you like to see your children using the new centre? Does Calderdale already have enough schools? Email: Yoursay@halifaxcourier.co.uk.