Many thousands of people passed through this establishment learning scientific, engineering and artistic skills and went on to many different occupations, teaching, acting, engineering and much more besides.
As a child I remember it being built and it was a terrific playgound for young boys, heaps of sand and gravel, piles of bricks and holes filled with water,we could get dirty and damp within a few hundred yards of our homes, sheer magic.
In later years I did evening classes there, night school as we called it, at both the Billingham and Oxbridge sites and also went to the theatre a number of times, including the opera ‘Don Pasquale’ with my school music club, my first and last foray into the world of opera.
It had most likely past its usefulness with the rise of University education for all and a lesser requirement for technical skills as industry faded away and administration and service work increased, still, it is always sad to see something you have grown up with disappear forever.
Photographs and details courtesy of Bruce Coleman.