University of Gloucestershire

University of Gloucestershire
University of Gloucestershire
Motto In animo et veritate (In Spirit and Truth)
Established 2001 - gained University Status
1834 - Mechanics' Institute
Type Public
Endowment £1.77m[1]
Chancellor formerly[2]George Carey, Baron Carey of Clifton
Vice-Chancellor Stephen Marston
Students 8,745[3]
Undergraduates 6,730[3]
Postgraduates 1,665[3]
Other students 350 FE[3]
Location Cheltenham and Gloucester, United Kingdom
51°53′16″N 2°05′20″W / 51.887909°N 2.088797°W / 51.887909; -2.088797Coordinates: 51°53′16″N 2°05′20″W / 51.887909°N 2.088797°W / 51.887909; -2.088797
Campus semi-urban
Gloucestershire University logo.png

The University of Gloucestershire is a university primarily based in Gloucestershire, England, spread over four campuses, three in Cheltenham and one in Gloucester.[4] A campus in London was sold in April 2010.[5] The Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive Officer (until July 2011[6]) was Dr. Paul Hartley.[7] In 2009/2010 several formerly senior figures in the university resigned. The University Council appointed Mr. Stephen Marston as Vice-Chancellor.[8]



The university is the recent successor of a large number of merged and name-changed institutions of further and higher education.[9] Its history began with the Mechanics' Institute founded in 1834.[10] From 1992, Cheltenham & Gloucester College of Higher Education (CGCHE) was permitted to award first and postgraduate degrees and 1998 it achieved Research degree awarding powers. However, it was only in 2001 that the University of Gloucestershire was awarded university status. Its history spans nearly two centuries.[11]

Dame Janet Trotter was the Vice-chancellor and Principal from 2001, retiring in 2006.

The University of Gloucestershire has pursued an environmental sustainability strategy since 1993, and was the first UK university to meet the ISO 14001 environmental management standard.[12] In 2008 it was declared the greenest University in the UK.[13] The University of Gloucestershire is also an active participant of the ERASMUS programme and the only UK university to be part of the BCA Programme offering semester abroad, most notably with the USA.

Simon Pegg, the comic actor and director who plays Scotty in the 2009 revamp of Star Trek, received an Honorary Fellowship from the University of Gloucestershire on the 4th of December 2008, for his contribution to the arts.[14]

Initiation rites and student behaviour

In October 2008, the University was subject to a journalistic investigation on student initiation rites, after the BBC obtained a copy of a secretly-filmed video featuring students with bags over their heads drinking and vomiting,[15] overlooked by another student dressed in what the press described as a "Nazi officer uniform".[16]

A further incident in December 2008 resulted in a Rugby club member vomiting on board a bus, following what a local newspaper called a "booze-fuelled initiation ceremony".[17]

In June 2011, a group of University of Gloucestershire students were convicted of outraging public decency after they "dressed in Top Gun outfits [and] performed lewd acts" in front of children on the top floor of a double-decker bus. The incident was recorded by the bus' CCTV system. The students were given community orders and banned from all pubs for six months. The university allowed them to continue their studies.[18]

2009 - 2011 resignations

In November 2009, Paul Bowler, the deputy vice-chancellor of the University resigned shortly after being suspended from his post only seven months after joining the institution. Paul Bowler, a former investment banker who joined Gloucestershire in May 2009, was on a week's leave when he was told not return to work. On 7 December, a university spokesperson said, "The deputy vice-chancellor Paul Bowler, has resigned. Financial benefits have not been sought by Mr Bowler, who is leaving of his own accord to pursue other interests".[19]

In December 2009 Dr Sharp, Dean and Associate Pro Vice-chancellor, following his resignation, took up a post in the new UK Higher Education International Unit.[20]

The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Broadfoot, resigned in March 2010,[21] during conflicting views on the financial health of the institution.[22] The precise circumstances of this resignation and the salary paid to her as recorded in the public accounts[23] have attracted various media attention being the reported highest of all UK Vice-chancellors for the year.[24]

In May 2010, the Chancellor, Lord Carey, resigned.[25]

In September 2010, Paul Bowler was a witness in an employment tribunal case brought by a member of staff of the University under the ‘whistleblowing’ legislation - the Public Interest Disclosure Act.[26] The tribunal found for the complainant[27] and outcome was reported in the higher education press.[28]

In March 2011, Dr. Paul Hartley resigned.[29]

Stephen Marston, Vice-Chancellor, has committed himself to listening to staff concerns.[30]

Campuses, faculties and courses

The university's undergraduate courses include Business Management,[31] Computing,[32] Media, Art & Communications, Geography,[33] Biology,[34] Social Science, Education and Sports.[35]

The university currently has currently over 9,500 full and part-time students, and has four campuses located in Cheltenham and Gloucester. A campus in London was sold in April 2010. Each campus is equipped with IT and library resources. The four faculties in the university were restructred to three from September 2010 being renamed as: Faculty of Media, Arts and Technology; Faculty of Business, Education and Professional Studies; Faculty of Applied Sciences.

Decisions taken by the University to close the Pittville Campus and the London Campus (see below) have been condemned by the University and College Union (UCU) as resulting from bad management [36]

Pittville Studios

Pittville Studios is located on Albert Road, Cheltenham, and was the home of the Faculty of Media, Art and Communications. It was founded as Cheltenham School of Art over 150 years ago.[9] However, in October 2009, the University announced that the campus was to be closed by 2011 due to 'financial difficulties' of the University. All courses held here are to be moved to other campuses.[37]

The University is reported as selling half the campus site.[38]

The Faculty of Media, Arts and Technology [39] is now distributed over other Cheltenham campuses.[40]

Student accommodation is available in Regency Halls, located near the town centre, and Pittville Halls, located in campus, all with en-suite single study bedrooms.[41]

Chapel at Francis Close Hall Campus.
Oxstalls campus

Francis Close Hall (FCH)

FCH is based in the restored historic buildings at Francis Close Hall, nearest to Cheltenham's town centre. The campus has a mix of Humanities, Education, Natural & Social Science and creative subjects. Student accommodation is available in Shaftsbury hall (on campus), Hardwick Halls and Regency Halls. Further accommodation includes St Georges, St Mary's, Maidenhorn and Whitehart.[41]


Hardwick is in close proximity to FCH and has a mix of creative subjects.

The Park

The Faculty of Business, Education and Professional Studies [42] is located on this campus providing education for business, management, law, marketing, computing, leisure, tourism and hospitality and media subjects.

The Park, Cheltenham, is the largest of the campuses and holds the most events.

Student accommodation is available in the Park villas, Challinor, Eldon & Merrowdown and Eldon & Merrowdown Annexe located on and next to the campus as well as Regency Halls across the town of Cheltenham.

A partnership with the Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust was launched in April 2009, and the Park Campus grounds became designated as a public nature reserve.[43] The garden includes over 900 trees, both native and ornamental, a shallow lake, and a meadow with native species.


Oxstalls campus is located in the heart of Gloucester, five minutes drive from the city centre. The campus reopened in 2002 (having been previously used for Computing and Business courses in the late 1980s/early 90s).

The Faculty of Applied Sciences [44] is located at Oxstalls campus. Student accommodation is available in Oxstalls Halls (on campus), Ermin Hall and Upper Quay all with ensuite single study bedrooms.

The London Campus

The London Campus was established in 1973 as the Urban Learning Foundation (ULF) with the aim of enhancing the quality of initial teacher training. In September 2003, the ULF became part of the University of Gloucestershire. The London Campus offered a one year Postgraduate Certificate in Primary Education and was the base for the North East London Graduate Teacher Programme (Primary). The university arranged and supervised Teaching Placements in urban schools for students from other colleges around the country.

£8.3 million was spent refurbishing the London campus. Following the refurbishment, it reopened in February 2009.[45]

The university announced the closure of the London Campus in September 2009. Times Higher Education quoted a spokeswoman as saying "We have decided to consolidate our business in Gloucestershire, reducing operational costs." This, as with Pittville Studios was another casualty of issues related to the funding cap on recruitment by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) and the 'financial difficulties' of the University of Gloucestershire.

The London Campus has been sold for £9.7 million to LHA London Limited.[46] The LHA [47] was founded in 1940 to help people made homeless by the Blitz. Today with 12 sites across the city they provide affordable accommodation for more than 1450 students, young professionals and those new to London, providing quality accommodation.

Forerunner colleges in the University timeline

  • 1834 – Cheltenham Mechanics' Institute
  • 1840 – Gloucester Mechanics' Institute
  • 1847 – Cheltenham Training College (Church Foundation)
  • 1852 – Cheltenham School of Art
  • 1920 – St Paul's College of Education
  • 1920 – St Mary's College of Education
  • 1967 – Gloucestershire College of Education
  • 1979 – College of St Paul and St Mary
  • 1980 – The Higher Education part of Gloucestershire College of Arts and Technology
  • 1990 – Cheltenham & Gloucester College of Higher Education
  • 2001 – University of Gloucestershire

Notable alumni

See also

  • Category:People associated with the University of Gloucestershire
  • Tone Radio


  1. ^
  2. ^ Melanie Newman ”Chancellor follows V-C out at Gloucestershire" Times Higher Education Supplement, May 29, 2010
  3. ^ a b c d "Table 0a - All students by institution, mode of study, level of study, gender and domicile 2006/07" (Microsoft Excel spreadsheet). Higher Education Statistics Agency. Retrieved 2008-04-09. 
  4. ^ Campus Tours
  5. ^ Times Higher Education - "Capital Campus sold"Times Higher Education Supplement, May 6, 2010
  6. ^ Simon Baker "All change again at Gloucestershire as it hunts for another new head" Times Higher Education Supplement November 25, 2010
  7. ^ John Gill "Welsh v-c plans departure, as Gloucestershire appoints new top man" Times Higher Education Supplement, July 2, 2010
  8. ^ John Gill "Gloucestershire turns to BIS for new v-c" Times Higher Education Supplement, February 28, 2011
  9. ^ a b University timeline
  10. ^ Mechanics' Institutes
  11. ^ University history article
  12. ^ Sustainable Development, University of Gloucestershire
  13. ^ And the greenest university is ... Gloucestershire The Guardian 3 July 2008 Retrieved 10 November 2009
  14. ^ Simon Pegg receives Honorary Fellowship, University of Gloucestershire, 4 December 2008
  15. ^ University to probe initiations, BBC News, 2 October 2008
  16. ^ Student dressed as Nazi in initiation ceremony, Daily Telegraph, 2 October 2008
  17. ^ Initiation ceremony students could be expelled, Gloucestershire Echo, 3 December 2008
  18. ^ A group of Gloucestershire University students dressed in Top Gun outfits performed lewd acts on the No 94 bus a court heard, Gloucestershire Citizen, 16 June 2011
  19. ^ Melanie Newman "Deputy leader steps down only seven months after taking up post" The Times Higher Education Supplement, December 10, 2009
  20. ^ James Everest “It’s a wide world” Times Higher Educational Supplement, December 3, 2009
  21. ^ Melanie Newman ”Gloucestershire vice-chancellor steps down” Times Higher Education Supplement, March 26, 2010
  22. ^ Melanie Newman ”Gloucestershire V-C resigns amid conflicting view on financial health” Times Higher Education Supplement, April 1, 2010
  23. ^ John Morgan "Identity check: Vice-chancellors' education and pay revealed" Times Higher Education Supplement, March 24, 2011
  24. ^ Kate Loveys "Degrees in greed: University chief picked up £1m over four years and nine others earned more than £300,000" Mail On-line, March 24, 2011
  25. ^ Melanie Newman ”Chancellor Follows V-C out at Gloucestershire" Times Higher Education Supplement, May 29, 2010
  26. ^ Simon Baker “Hefce clawback could add to Gloucestershire's woes” Times Higher Education Supplement, September 23, 2010
  27. ^ " Whistleblowing case report[
  28. ^ John Gill “Tribunal finds in favour of Gloucestershire whistleblower” Times Higher Education Supplement, October 1, 2010
  29. ^ Resignation of uni chief, March 15, 2011
  30. ^ Simon Baker "Gloucestershire v-c tells staff to speak out on past turmoil, 'warts and all'"Times Higher Education Supplement, August 4, 2011
  31. ^ Business Management course
  32. ^ Computing course
  33. ^ Geography degree course
  34. ^ Biology degree course
  35. ^ Undergraduate Courses, University of Gloucestershire
  36. ^ Bad management to blame for proposed job losses at University of Gloucestershire, says union 9th October 2009
  37. ^ BBC News : 'Cuts' force media campus closure
  38. ^ Fears over University of Gloucestershire campus homes plan[Gloucestershire Echo, October 13, 2011]
  39. ^ Faculty of Media, Art and Technology[University web site]
  40. ^ Pittville Reception will be closing from Monday 18th July
  41. ^ a b University Student Accommodation
  42. ^ Faculty of Business, Education and Professional Studies[University web site]
  43. ^ Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust website for nature reserve list
  44. ^ Faculty of Applied Sciences[University web site]
  45. ^ Melanie Newman "Gloucestershire to shut London outpost" Times Higher Education Supplement, September 28, 2009
  46. ^ University press release "Sale of University London Campus", April 2010
  47. ^ LHA London Limited

External links

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