What makes your nearest KAE centre stand out?

What makes your nearest KAE centre stand out?

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27 January 2017

If you're a devoted reader of the KAE Magazine site, you'll know that throughout the last year or so we've been taking you on a virtual tour of our many centres in Kent with the Our Centres articles. Of course, we eventually ran out of centres to show you so this monthly feature had to come to an end but we want to resurrect it today by picking out snippets of just some our Centre Highlights to show you. If these interest you be sure to take a look at all of our full Centre Highlights here.

If you've been into your nearest centre this month, you would've seen the fold out course highlights, showcasing some of the best courses coming to that centre in the next few months. These are very handy to take home, but if you want to see what our other centres offer and you're happy to travel that little bit further, read on and find out more about the rest of our centres.


Ashford is a town that combines a traditional market town with the vibrancy of a modern gateway, and home of course, to KAE. Opened in 2011 and just a short walk away from Ashford International, Ashford Gateway Plus is one of our more modern centres, and really serves as the hub of the town. It is home to not only Kent Adult Education but also Ashford Library, a nursery, Citizens Advice Bureau, deaf services, a Gurkha welfare advice centre and our sister brand Skills Plus, amongst others.

Now to the most important feature of the Gateway, the courses it hosts. The centre is well equipped with seven classrooms on the second floor, including a fitness studio, an IT room and a spacious artstudio which is located in the centre of the building and offers inspiring views of the amphitheatre, pier, fruit trees and fountains of the memorial gardens. No matter what time of year you find yourself looking out into the gardens, you will always be surrounded by new ideas.

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Broadstairs Adult Education Centre has a 40 year history of delivering a wide range of courses and being a community venue used for arts and theatre. Located on St Peters Road not far from the station, the centre has a strong tradition of delivering creative courses in the heart of Broadstairs, with the provision including potterydrawing and painting.

It's very appropriate then that a distinctive feature of Broadstairs AEC is the pottery studios. Known locally as ‘Hilderstone Stable Pottery’ or ‘The Stables’ the single-story out-building is full of character and hosts state-of-the-art pottery facilities including several potter’s wheels and a kiln. There is also a distinctive art room with full height ceiling and a dazzling glass window all down one side. This offers learners the chance to be creative in inspired spaces.

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Canterbury is such a historical city that there probably isn't too much we can tell you that you don't already know so we'll get straight into telling you all about our centre.

A real community hub, Canterbury Adult Education Centre sits within Canterbury High School. The centre offers a large purpose-built sewing room, a dedicated art studio with dramatic lighting and a spacious studio, which plays host to classes including chairobics and yoga.  Sign-language, Italian, French, German and Spanish, the centre is host to one of the biggest language programmes in the county. Other particular highlights include an array of beauty and complementary therapy courses delivered in a modern beauty studio.

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Dartford Adult Education Centre boasts a large state-of-the-art dance studio with a sprung form dance floor which is enjoyed by many of our Pay as You Go (PAYG ) dance students including line dancingkettlercise and pilates. The Dartford centre is unique as it houses the only Kent Adult Education woodwork studio where you can learn basic skills as well as developing on to longer extended projects. The centres creative provision has nearly doubled in recent years, so you can now enjoy courses including sugarcraftstained glass and floristry like never before.

The Dartford centre also facilitates the greatest number of accredited courses, and many learners study with us to help them progress their career. This includes courses training future teaching assistants, helping you get your European Computer Driving License (ECDL) or even study for a GCSE. As well as this, the Dartford centre has had the highest number of learners studying for their diploma in counselling.

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Opened in 2003, Dover Discovery Centre is the first integrated learning centre in Kent and is literally surrounded by the town’s history. From the crescent of the Children’s Library you can see the ruins of the church of St Martin-le-Grande, which was said to rival Canterbury Cathedral in size and stature, and from the other side of the building, the remains of the gateway of the Classis Britannica Fort are visible.

Many of our centres throughout Kent are equipped with studios to host a range of creative courses such as jewellery making and pottery, but the Dover Centre prides itself on its dedication to academic courses and helping you to make improvements to your life with our Personal Development provision, most notably our lipreadingcounselling and computing courses. The centre is equipped with plenty of large classrooms and computer rooms, and its location on top of the library is ideal for you to get some extra studying and research in before or after your course.

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Maidstone – the county town of the garden of England. Home to Mackenzie Crook, William Hazlitt and Sir Thomas Wyatt, also home to one of our busiest adult education centres.

The Maidstone centre is known for its variety; from arts to assertivenessbusinessto beauty and craft to computing, there’ll be a course at a time to suit you. The centre is well equipped for its many art courses, having two studios with high ceilings and plenty of natural light. In the summer months, many tutors take advantage of the nearby Brenchley gardens, and run art sessions in the sun, which is superb for lovers of flower painting. For lovers of photography, uniquely, the centre also possesses two dark rooms for learners to experiment with old photographic techniques.

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much more than solely Kent Adult Education. If you’re from Sittingbourne, you’re probably aware of Borden Grammar School on Avenue of Remembrance and may have studied there yourself. But did you know that the original location of the school was exactly where we are now located on College Road? The school was built on the site in 1878 as a boarding school for boys and stayed there until it moved to its current location in 1928.

The centre is well-equipped to serve its purpose both as a centre of learning and as the headquarters of KAE, with a number of key teams and senior members of staff based here. The centre has ten classrooms in total across the two floors, including two computer suites, two fantastic art rooms equipped with plenty of easels and inspirational pieces of work from past students, a craft room ideally set up for our jewellery making courses, and a gym room for our range of yogadancepilates and kettlercise courses.

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Tunbridge Wells

Each of the four grand floors of Tunbridge Wells Adult Education has something new to offer. Built with a basement for upholstery courses, an art studio in the attic and a pottery studio for…well, pottery; all the learning rooms are used to teach hundreds of learners throughout the year everything from silversmithing to ESOL and interior design to GCSE maths. Tunbridge Wells AEC is a hive of activity, there’s never been a better time to try something new!

One of the most popular courses at Tunbridge Wells AEC is upholstery which takes place in a dedicated space in the basement of the building. Do you own a scruffy old chair or stool that needs a facelift? Why not learn how to transform your object into something beautiful? Every year we are overwhelmed by how quickly these are booked up, so be sure to book quickly to avoid missing out.

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