LECTURES at Kidderminster College face disruption today with members of a teaching union due to strike.

The National Association for Teachers in Further and Higher Education - NATFHE - voted for the national one-day action over pay.

Kidderminster College's NATFHE branch chairman, David Bamber, said he expected "very few, if any", lectures to take place at the college today.

Kidderminster College chiefs said they were unable to implement fully a two-year pay deal - a problem they shared with other colleges all over the country.

Staff have already been given a three per cent increase for this year but management said other aspects of the pay award were too costly at present.

Colleges were said to be under financial pressure, with increases in funding from the Learning and Skills Council two years ago not covering rises in costs, such as national insurance and pension contributions.

Colleges had had to fund those, heaping financial pressures on their ability to balance their budgets while funding pay awards - unlike in the schools sector, where annual awards were covered by additional funding.

Some colleges had been unable to give pay increases to staff over recent years, although that had not been the case at Kidderminster, which had made the recommended award over the past three years.

Management at Kidderminster College said they were keen to see pay differentials between lecturers working in further education and school teachers reduced.

It was common for teachers with the same levels of experience and qualifications as lecturers to be paid more.

This posed problems for recruitment by colleges and the Association of Colleges - AoC - was lobbying the Government and LSC to secure fairer funding for staff.

Andrew Miller, principal and chief executive of Kidderminster College, said: "The strike action is very regrettable and concerns fair funding in the FE sector. The problem is a national issue and not a local college one and I sincerely hope we can agree a way forward in the coming months."

Mr Bamber added: "Senior management pay has gone up very significantly in comparison to that of lecturers and support staff in the last decade or so."