Campaigners’ public consultation on Hastings university exit


Pro-Hastings university campaigners will be canvassing the public’s opinion of the campus at an open consultation on Friday (June 10).

A group set by residents opposed to University of Brighton closing its Hastings campus will be discussing the issue and finding out what the public think.

The group, called Hastings - A University Town, will be in the Old Observer Building from 2pm to 6pm gathering views and opinions to help make a case for keeping higher education in the town.

“We’re hoping to discuss and document the direction of higher education in Hastings following the announcement of Brighton university that they would be withdrawing their Hastings campus,” one of the organisers Alan Bolwell said.

“The event will involve lots of group discussion, we’re hoping to record those discussions and interview people to document ideas about how higher education can continue to contribute to the town.

“Ultimately we’re hoping to produce something that will be easily shared and understood that will show what having a campus does for this town, the accommodations we’re going to have to make to keep a University presence, and what that will look like going forward.”

The meeting will be a chance for people to air their views about what the campus, what the challenges have been for higher education in the town, and to imagine the possible futures for the continuance of higher education in Hastings.

The group said there has been a huge amount of interest so far and it is expected a number of politicians, business people, third sector groups and community members will be there to share their expertise and express their support.

The afternoon will be co-hosted by Hastings Community Organisers and will involve aspects of a technique called The Art of Hosting.

There will also be a video booth being ran by students from the campus where people can share their thoughts. These will then be edited into an online package to promote the campaign.

The meeting will be further documented by graphic facilitator Andy Willard, in the style of the popular RSA Animate videos, who will be recording the best parts of conversations to provide a visual account of the consultation.

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