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    BSDC launches new creative hybrid space

    07 May 2024

    Burton and South Derbyshire College (BSDC) has recently launched a new creative hybrid space, the Biome. As part of the College’s upgraded and revitalised facilities made possible through the Stronger Towns Fund, the Biome will provide a unique platform for learners to evolve, adapt, create and learn.

    Rated ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted, BSDC's forward-thinking approach to education is reflected in the new facilities being introduced, featuring future orientated, multi-use technology, including touch screen displays and Xencelabs pen displays, UV and dye sublimation printing, hybrid laser cutters and 3D formers, enabling diverse prototyping.

    The Biome is a hybrid working space for higher education learners in the College’s University Centre to communicate, collaborate and bring innovative ideas to life through a range of technology. The space has been designed to incorporate the College's commitment to being a carbon neutral college by ensuring all items have been sourced locally, including sustainable furniture created by local furniture designer, Jeff Maker.

    The Biome will provide a gateway to a range of facilities, including a motion capture suite, a network of seventeen 3D printers in partnership with Ultimaker, a Maker Space, a Sign and Print Academy in partnership with Hardy Signs and a LEGO Education Innovation Studio.

    The entrance to the Biome features an art installation by established artist, Tom Hackett, titled ‘Another Green World’. The sculpture depicts a large group of white ceramic bird sculptures suspended from the ceiling of the entrance of the College’s University Centre reception, each fixed with a twisting aluminium bar to create a sense of movement and nature. Accompanying the piece of work is an interactive sound piece, which plays intermittent bursts of birdsong when a touchpad is pressed. Tom has also been working with Contemporary Creative Practice degree students on an exciting project to create additional sustainability themed artwork for the space.

    The Biome is home to a range of plants in keeping with the sustainability theme, and to create a peaceful area to study. To keep the plants thriving, the College has collaborated with Joe Bagley, renowned horticulturist and Gardeners’ World Live presenter, to provide students with an engaging workshop aimed at nurturing the vibrant ecosystem of plants.

    In addition, Joe has been involved in designing a terrarium in the Biome, collaborating with Product Design learners and tutors. The terrarium which holds a range of cacti, was created using a blend of traditional stained-glass techniques and digital craftsmanship, showcasing the integration of new technology with existing crafts.

    Chris Beech, Assistant Principal and Dean at BSDC said: “We are delighted to launch the Biome and to be able to offer our students such a unique and inspiring space. Our aim is to create an environment where learners can collaborate and be inspired. We are proud to be working with local businesses, artists and specialists to create a space which reflects the importance of sustainability and our connection with the world around us.

    “The Biome will provide a platform for students to explore, experiment and express their creative ideas, as well as giving them access to the latest technology and tools. We are delighted to welcome our learners to the Biome and to provide them with a vibrant and creative space for learning.”

    Contact Details

    Contact Details

    Burton and South Derbyshire College
    Tel: 01283 494400

    Town Centre Campus

    Burton Town Centre Campus, Lichfield Street, Burton on Trent, Staffordshire DE14 3RL

    Stephen Burke Construction Academy

    Construction Academy, 21 Tetron Point, William Nadin Way, Swadlincote, Derbyshire DE11 OBB