In a shock move, our vice-chancellor has transferred himself and all 250 members of our administrative staff to new offices within the Poppleton Pork Products factory.
He told our reporter, Keith Ponting (30), that the relocation was a logical response to the Government's abolition of the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills and the subsequent incorporation of higher education into the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.
"Now that Government makes no distinction between universities and business, it's even more important that we break down the remaining barriers at Poppleton. Our degrees and research are now all business-facing, so it only makes sense that our administration should also be as close to business as possible. And you can't get much closer than having your offices next door to the emulsifying shed at Poppleton Pork Products."
He added that it was "most unfortunate" that some people were inclined to write off these necessary developments with pejorative phrases such as "Into the arms of Mammon". This reflected an antipathy towards business that was incompatible with the aim of higher education going forward. "We like to think", he chuckled endearingly, "that we are now happily moving 'Into the arms of Gammon'."
Sweet smell of success
Our campus burst into colour last week as members of the Department of Aromatherapy, led by Professor Gwendolyn Frisson, paraded round the former administrative block happily waving bunches of wild carrot, devil's claw, cinnamon leaf and lime blossom.
What sparked the herbal celebration was the news of a full retraction from the journalist on the Poppleton Evening News who had described the department in print as "a hotchpotch of untestable propositions and unproven medical interventions".
The journalist in question, Simeon Rainbow, explained in his published retraction that he'd had time to reflect on the department's reaction to his original article and now fully recognised that there was no better way of deciding upon the scientific validity of practices such as aromatherapy than by threatening anyone who denied such validity with an enormously costly libel action.
Professor Frisson said that she welcomed the retraction. She would now be able to return with renewed enthusiasm to her research on the beneficial effects of grated angelica root on patients with advanced encephalitis.
Mind your bike
Mavis Allweather, the Head of our Department of Art and Design and Graphics and Digital Interactive Mixed Multimedia, has asked us to point out that the bike shed that is currently located outside the Theology for Business Building is not a bike shed but "a bike-shed installation" that has been submitted as a piece of finals work under the title Cycle of Life by third-year student Veronica Poole.
Please respect this feature of the shed. A failure to recognise its installation status meant that the external examiner was unable to conclude his evaluation last week because it was inappropriately occupied by five staff bicycles and two embracing but unrelated members of the English Department.
Thought for the Week
(contributed by Jennifer Doubleday, Head of Personal Development)
Ninety-five per cent of Loughborough staff consider the university to be a good place to work. All very commendable when compared with our own figure of 4 per cent. But we do have one advantage over all those happy East Midlanders. We at Poppleton have something to look forward to.