Kingston Maurward

New multi-site for Dorset agricultural college and estate

The Brief

Kingston Maurward College is a traditional yet modern land-based college sat in the heart of Dorchester, Dorset. The campus is set in 750 acres of stunning parkland where students get to experience a ‘hands on’ approach to education, working with some of the best practical teaching facilities in the country. In addition, Kingston Maurward Gardens and Animal Park is a well established tourist attraction in its own right, pulling in over 30,000 visitors a year. The grounds also boast successful Outdoor Adventure and Equestrian Centres and the picturesque estate is regarded as the ultimate Dorset country house wedding venue. The college approached CuCo last year looking for a website refresh, as their current site was outdated, inflexible and impractical for everyday content management.

The Solution

When Kingston Maurward approached us, their original platform was made up of several separate sites, each with individual back-ends. This presented a significant challenge for the college as it meant logging in and out of several sites multiple times when attempting to complete simple, everyday tasks. This system also hindered the current search facility from operating smoothly, meaning valuable information couldn't be found.

Our web developers sprung into action and designed and developed six eCommerce-friendly WordPress website solutions that now function together as a multi-site. The new platform now contains one back-end system, allowing a much simpler process for adhoc uploads and adjustments to any site. A large part of CuCo’s web build process was focused on the development of a unique, customised code for the search facility. This new facility now allows for flexibility when searching through the various course options. With a unified back-end and bespoke search function, CuCo's web development work has vastly improved the UX, for both the back-end and front-end visitors. The addition of real-time social feeds allow a showcase of all the exciting activities taking place across the whole estate.

Results

The new Kingston Maurward College website met all the requirements of a complex brief. The site is modern and clean, with photography showcasing the vibrancy of this extraordinary college, house and grounds.

Session duration has increased by 300% since launch and web enquiries have reached record levels. The different aspects of the parkland and house which were before all forced onto the one site, are no longer diluted by, and competing with one another, with the overall visitor journey much improved. The new website was delivered with great success and is now the central hub of information about what’s on offer at the whole estate.

Services Provided:

  • WordPress Website Development
  • Responsive Website Design & Build
  • CMS
  • Website Design
  • Hosting