GALLERY: Student protest against Hastings university closure

Demonstration outside University of Brighton in Hastings. SUS-160317-144515001
Demonstration outside University of Brighton in Hastings. SUS-160317-144515001

Students gathered in the town centre to protest against the closure of the Hastings university campus today (Thursday, March 17).

The student body is furious with the decision to close the University of Brighton Hastings campus in the next two years.

Demonstration outside University of Brighton in Hastings. SUS-160317-144326001

Demonstration outside University of Brighton in Hastings. SUS-160317-144326001

This protest follows last week’s demonstrations outside the Havelock Road building.

Brighton Students’ Union (BSU) met to discuss how they would be tackling the decision to close the university campus on Monday (March 14).

A manager has been appointed to oversee the campaign with the main target to keep it at the forefront of people’s minds so it is not forgotten about.

A statement from the BSU said: “This meeting aimed to create a focused and structured campaign, and was well attended by students, staff and members of the local community.

Demonstration outside University of Brighton in Hastings. SUS-160317-144451001

Demonstration outside University of Brighton in Hastings. SUS-160317-144451001

“From this meeting we have appointed a campaign manager, produced points of direct action and identified the ongoing support we must put in place to keep the momentum of the campaign present and at the forefront of people’s minds.

“We will continue to push for clarity on the matter and stand by our statement made on March 8, which condemned the vagueness of the information made available by vice-chancellor Debra Humphris, board of governors (BoG) and senior university management.”

The BSU also organised a rally in the town centre yesterday (Thursday, March 17), to help raise awareness of the campaign.

“As a union we continue to have the welfare of our students as our priority, but understand that we must keep communication open with all those who will be effected by this decision, and will endeavour to keep all staff and the local community informed about any progress we make or actions we plan to take,” the statement added.

Demonstration outside University of Brighton in Hastings. SUS-160317-144439001

Demonstration outside University of Brighton in Hastings. SUS-160317-144439001

Staff and students were sent an update from the deputy vice chancellor Chris Pole on Tuesday attempting to clarify the situation.

“Following the announcement of the outcome of the review we committed to coming back to you with some further information,” he wrote.

“This email seeks to clarify the situation regarding current and prospective students and staff and outline next steps.

“We can confirm that: we will continue to recruit for 2016 entry as originally planned; all programmes will run for their full term at the University of Brighton in Hastings; no students will be required to move from Hastings to complete their studies.

Students protested against the University of Brighton Hastings campus closure last week

Students protested against the University of Brighton Hastings campus closure last week

“I will lead an internal project team, supported by colleagues, including the campus director Paul Frost, to oversee the delivery of this piece of work.

“Decisions about 2017 will be informed by the university’s portfolio review, development of the university strategy and evolving plans for the university centre.

“As soon as possible, colleagues working in Hastings will hear from their heads of school, heads of central departments or campus director about what this means for them.

“We will take the time during the 2016/17 academic year to work with staff, students and local stakeholders to hear their views and in partnership with Sussex Coast College Hastings and Hastings Borough Council consider how these views might fully inform the development of a university centre that works for Hastings.

“Emails are being sent to current and prospective students confirming what will be happening.

“If you have any questions, please email us.”

Demonstration outside University of Brighton in Hastings. SUS-160317-144638001

Demonstration outside University of Brighton in Hastings. SUS-160317-144638001

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Demonstration outside University of Brighton in Hastings. SUS-160317-144615001

Demonstration outside University of Brighton in Hastings. SUS-160317-144615001

Demonstration outside University of Brighton in Hastings. SUS-160317-144603001

Demonstration outside University of Brighton in Hastings. SUS-160317-144603001

Demonstration outside University of Brighton in Hastings. SUS-160317-144504001

Demonstration outside University of Brighton in Hastings. SUS-160317-144504001