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Last Updated: Friday, 1 July, 2005, 19:51 GMT 20:51 UK
Last parade at military college
Welbeck College
Welbeck College has been leased by the army for 53 years
A final dress parade is being held at a military college in Nottinghamshire this weekend before it closes down and moves over the county boundary.

Welbeck College, a military-run sixth-form college, is moving from its home at a former abbey near Worksop to Woodhouse in Leicestershire.

The historic former home of the Duke of Portland has been leased by the army for 53 years.

Principal Tony Halliwell said the estate had been "a wonderful location".

"It is a marvellous place with Grade I and Grade II listed buildings, a sunken garden and swimming pool.

"We have the advantage of the lakes to do sailing and rowing - it really is a superb place location for a college."

Sunken ballroom

Final parades are being held at the college on Saturday, before the pack up and leave on Sunday.

He said many famous Welbexians had risen to high ranks throughout the army over the past 53 years.

The Duke of Portland used the sunken ballroom to host dances, but the college turned it into a gymnasium, even though it had 17 chandeliers in the ceiling.

Mark Willis, 18, from Surrey, one of 220 students at the college, said: "It will be sad to leave, but it is an old building and the new one will have better facilities and the IT side of it will be better."

Mr Halliwell said: "We are very sorry to leave the site - we have been here a long time so it is quite an upheaval.

"I think quite a few tears will be shed - and not just by the students either - during the final parade."

The new Defence Sixth Form College will open at its new location near Loughborough in September.

New defence college planned
28 Jan 03 |  England

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