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HRH The Princess Royal to visit Harper Adams

Posted 7 April 2006

HRH The Princess Royal on her visit to Harper Adams in 2004

HARPER Adams University College is set to host a visit from Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal.

Her Royal Highness will visit the prestigious Newport-based university college on May 8th to officially open two state-of-the-art buildings.

During her visit, Her Royal Highness will unveil a stone to commemorate the opening of the Aspire (Advancing Skills for Professionals in the Rural Economy) Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning, recently awarded to Harper Adams.

She will also unveil a plaque commemorating the opening of the Bioenergy Development Centre.

Professor Wynne Jones, Principal at Harper Adams University College, said: “It will be an honour to receive a visit from Her Royal Highness.

“The Princess Royal last visited Harper Adams in June 2004, and saw, at first hand, the wide range of research and work with rural businesses being undertaken at the university college’s campus.

“We know have an opportunity to show Her Royal Highness, who is now an Honorary Fellow, the many developments that have since taken place.”

Harper Adams was recognised as a Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning in January 2005 in recognition of its outstanding achievements in this area.

The £2 million award has allowed the university college to establish the Aspire Centre. The centre will promote excellence in teaching and learning in higher education. Staff will work with students from Harper Adams and colleagues from other universities and colleges to develop innovative ways to teach and support learning.

Harper Adams was selected in recognition of its work in helping students develop their academic and professional skills; providing work-based learning for sandwich students; meeting the continuing professional development needs of rural professionals requiring short-courses and part-time study and; supporting those with a disability. It was the only award made to an institution or university faculty that specialises in supporting the needs of the rural economy, land-based and food sectors.

The Bioenergy Development Centre is home to the UK’s first micro-turbine biomass generator. The generator, which is capable of producing 100kWh of renewable electricity and 150kWh of heat, will be able to generate enough energy to provide a quarter of Harper Adams’ average electrical demand.

It is expected that the BG100 biomass generator, developed by Talbotts Engineering following 10 years of research and development, will also, in time, be able to provide 50 per cent of the heat needed for the students’ union building, the main conference building, the students’ union bar and two student halls of residence through a district heating system.

It has been designed for use in a variety of rural and urban settings and is fuelled by 2.5 tonnes per day of forestry and agricultural residues, wood chips and pellets, and energy crops such as miscanthus and short rotation coppice.

The visit continues a tradition of Royal visits to Harper Adams University College that have included HM The Queen, HM The Queen Mother, HRH Princess Margaret and HRH The Prince of Wales.

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