PLANS for a new technology college could “inject life” into Gillingham but the idea is “unlikely” to be realised without serious investment, according to local figures.

In a letter prepared for Monday night’s full town council meeting outlining the college proposal, director of Equilibrium Youth Work, Paul Williams, explained he had raised the concept of a college for the town a few years ago, but funding for the infrastructure could not be sourced.

Now, following the Government’s announcement of a ‘levelling-up fund’ - a pot of money to help towns with regeneration projects - Mr Williams hopes funding can be applied for so college construction can become a reality.

In the document addressed to councillors, Mr Williams said a technology college was not to be mixed up with a technical college, instead offering an education in areas including robotics, renewable energy and artificial intelligence, to name a few.

The letter said: “I have lived and worked in north Dorset since 1991 and have long held the belief that the young people living in north Dorset would benefit greatly from a local technology college, to provide them with the knowledge, skills and qualifications they need going forward in our ever-increasing technological world.

“I believe that a technology college like this would not only be a great starting point for our young people in this modern world, but would likely attract prospective employers to the area, with a ready-made work force to recruit from.”

Without any further discussion council members agreed future details and correspondence concerning the project should be directed to the Town Team.

Speaking to the Journal after the meeting, Town Team chairman Ian Day said he was attracted to the project because of the “different disciplines that would be on offer”.

He added it would be “offering something different for the town”.

Despite this, Ian said finding the funds to make the concept a reality was still “unlikely”.

Describing the college as “a very expensive piece of investment”, he said: “The truth of the matter is to make things happen you need to have a plan to spend some money.”

When a college was first considered for the area, Gillingham was highlighted as a potential location due to its transport and train links.

“It would be injecting life into a town that is sadly lacking,” Ian added.