A crucial vote is set to take place on plans to build a major new medical college in Bolton next week.

If approved, the plans will see the Bolton College of Medical Sciences build on the ground of Royal Bolton Hospital which aims to give students the chance to learn practical medical skills in a real hospital environment.

Planners believe the college will be the "first of its kind" in the country and now would-be students have come forward to give their views on what it could mean for them.

Dean Ramsden, 53, from Horwich, said: “I currently work as a physio assistant part time, three days a week, which I’m doing independently of my studies.

“So, I’ve experienced the practical learning that way.

“But it would have been brilliant if BCMS was open at the time to say this is what you can do and to have everything centralised.

“I had to ring people and ask what my options were.

“I would have been very interested in the type of apprenticeship route BCMS will offer.

The Bolton News:

Physio assistant Dean Ramsden from Horwich

He added: “While BCMS is being built, Bolton College and University should go into schools and colleges in the region and really showcase what it can offer because people will be biting their hand off to go there.”

The project is a collaboration between the University of Bolton, Bolton College, Bolton NHS Foundation Trust and Bolton Council, all of which hope to see more people from the area go into health care careers as a result.

Another potential learner is 16-year-old Bolton College student Alishah Basharat.

The Bolton News:

An artist's impression of the completed Bolton College of Medical Sciences 

She said: “On my healthcare T Level course at the moment, there’s only three people from Bolton, including me.

“The rest have come here to study from elsewhere.

"BCMS would expand on that existing reputation and attract people to Bolton from across the UK.

“At the moment we’re having to bring in a lot of nurses from overseas, but BCMS would help to develop homegrown talent to fill those roles.”

The vote is set to take place on Thursday, June 23.