Fifty years of history at Uxbridge College were celebrated by current and former staff and students at an event on Thursday 22 October.

The College’s golden anniversary was marked with a celebratory reception and an exhibition showing how it has grown since opening its doors as Uxbridge Technical College in 1965.

Displays charted life of the College, which opened in Park Road Uxbridge with one £750,000 building, with the Hayes campus added in 1989 on the site of the old Townfield School, off Coldharbour Lane. Newspaper cuttings, old prospectuses, photos, video and other archive items were featured. View event & exhibition photos here.

Laraine Smith OBE, Uxbridge College Principal, said: “Uxbridge College has changed and grown enormously over its fifty years, and it has been wonderful to see that all laid out in front of us. It really highlights how much has been achieved and how the College has also been kept fit for the challenges of the day. We have been delighted to welcome so many former staff and students, including one of the College’s original staff members and two of my predecessor Principals. I would like to thank everyone involved in bringing together our exhibition today which has illustrated our five decades beautifully.”

The event was attended by The Mayor and Mayoress of Hillingdon Councillor George Cooper and Councillor Judith Cooper, and as part of the exhibition a miniature of the ceremonial Mayoral mace, which was made at the then Uxbridge Technical College, was also on loan. The mini mace, displayed alongside the full size version, was presented by the borough to RAF Uxbridge to mark the 25th Anniversary of the granting of the Freedom of the Borough.

Key points from the College’s history included high drama in 1988 and 1989 with two arson attacks, and sheer excitement and pride, such as in May 2008 when the College was graded 'outstanding' by Ofsted, which it remains until this day.

Initially the College offered courses in engineering, science, commerce and general studies to 1,386 students, and today delivers an extensive range of programmes across every key academic and professional area to over 9,000 students.

Out of the College’s five Principals from over the years, three were at the event including current Principal Laraine Smith, and her predecessors Noel Otley and Rachel Davies.

There were also fun themed activities to commemorate the occasion including a photo booth, classic cars provided by Uxbridge and District Classic Vehicle Society, and students dressed in fashions from the decades as well.