Laurie Taylor Column

July 22, 2005

Hull lacks "attractiveness as a university city" - Lincoln University's vice-chancellor explains why his Hull campus has enrolled fewer students than anticipated, The Times Higher , July 15 From: Jamie Targett, Director of Corporate Development I am pleased to tell you that the Marketing and Promotion Committee has now issued its final report on the role of the city of Poppleton in the promotion of this university. Here are the key findings:

(1) Cathedrals . It appears that prospective students favour cathedral towns. There was, unfortunately, little prospect of this Poppleton deficiency being remedied in the near future. Campaigns to persuade the Church of England to upgrade Poppleton's church of St Michael in the Sticks to cathedral status had proved inconclusive and there was insufficient evidence of piety in the city to suggest that an entirely new building would prove ecclesiastically viable. It was further decided that, although it was making the best of a bad job, the prospectus reference to Poppleton as a city with "several big churches" was ultimately counterproductive.

(2) City features . The committee considered other city features, that might be used to promote the university. Nominations included the Clarence Street swimming baths (currently closed for refurbishment), the statue of Gladstone next to the video-hire shop in Slingsby Road, the newly expanded juvenile courthouse adjacent to the Waylands Estate and the recently opened Binge Drinking Precinct in Lower Poppleton. None was deemed suitable.

(3) Symbolic relocation . The committee discussed ways in which the university might remedy its urban deficits by drawing on features of adjacent or neighbouring cities. It was noted that Northumbria University had originally described itself as the University of Northumbria "at Newcastle". A similar tactic had been used by the University of Central England "in Birmingham" and by the University of Uttoxeter "on the way to Stoke-on-Trent". After lengthy debate, it was agreed that the University of Poppleton should extend its appellation from the University of Poppleton to the University of Poppleton at Cambridge.

I hope this clarifies the situation.

Jamie Targett MBA (Old Sarum), MBA (Uttoxeter), MBA (Tesco Home Study)

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