A new indoor school is being built at Newton Rigg College in Penrith, Cumbria as part of a £3m development programme to update facilities for students.

The indoor school should be finished by early next year and the £250,000 project to resurface the outdoor arena is completed.

Newton Rigg asked London 2012 course builder, Andrew Bowen to create a top equine educational facility and competition venue for rider’s from across the UK and the college’s equine students.

Both arenas have equi-tread rubber surfaces and the indoor school will have a 300-seat spectator gallery and a new lorry parking area.

Last October new stabling was also built and the college’s equine administration and lecture hub in the Grizedale building has been refurbished.

The college has also invested in a new weighbridge, which will be used for students’ practical learning and will be offered as a free service to outside riders.

“This project will create a first class base for students and also enable us to stage a whole raft of competitions, affiliated and unaffiliated,” said Philip Grant, the college’s head of equine studies.

Mr Grant said the college plans to host BE, British Driving Society and dressage events and offer instruction in arena polo and side saddle riding.

The college has seen a rise in equine students, particularly from Scotland for its courses which range from Level 2 and Level 3 diplomas in equine management and horse care to degree programmes at Newton Rigg’s sister college, Askham Bryan in York.

Other courses at Newton Rigg include agriculture, horticulture, forestry, countryside management, sport, engineering, game-keeping and conservation and animal management.

The £3m investment plan announced in November 2012 will upgrade existing buildings on the campus.

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