95-year-old alumnus Albert Bailey returned to campus to reminisce during our 100th anniversary, almost eighty years after studying Horticulture with us in the 1940s.
During Albert’s visit to Reaseheath in November 2022, he shared his memories with staff and toured parts of campus, including our Main Hall and horticulture facilities to see how they have developed since his student days.
While revisiting our Main Hall, which is mainly used as staff offices today, Albert explained that it was used as student accommodation for male students at The Cheshire School of Agriculture, as well as the dining hall and venue for evening dances.
Albert also toured our new horticulture facilities which have grown considerably over the years, and now includes our Vertical Farm which was installed in 2021 and is the UK’s largest training and research centre for vertical farming. The tour also included looking around our commercial production unit and glasshouses, which today are found across campus from where they were in 1944.
While reminiscing, Albert recalls that in the 40s we only offered courses in Agriculture, Dairying and Horticulture and had less than fifty students; there were only seven students on his Horticulture course, and he was the only male student in the group! Today we teach thousands of students every year at both our college and university centre in over twenty different course areas.
When asked what studying our nine-month Horticulture course was like, Albert described it as a tremendous experience. He remembers working in the orchard and old glasshouses, learning how to make standardise compost, and discovering that he loved learning.
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