In a statement released by the board, the group says although it “was not an easy decision to make”, it has come to its “natural end point”.
“The Group was founded at a time of real change within the sector and so it comes to end at another point of significant change,” the statement reads.
“Collectively, we have taken the decision to bring the 1994 Group to an end, because as institutions we have expanded and changed over time to the point where the need for the Group as originally constituted no longer exists.”
The group had appeared under threat ever since the universities of Durham, Exeter, York and Queen Mary, University of London, left to join the Russell Group last year. Membership has further dwindled to 11 since then with the departures of the universities of Bath, Reading, St Andrews and Surrey.
The group thanked its current and former chief executives - Alex Bols and Paul Marshall – “and all the excellent staff who have contributed to the work of the group over the years” in its statement.
“The group has a proud history campaigning on the importance of both outstanding research and an excellent student experience and their symbiotic relationship as well as championing issues such as the need for a postgraduate student support system, better engaging students in their academic experience and the challenges facing the part-time sector,” the statement says.
“We leave the group as friends and colleagues as convinced as ever that the universities we represent - committed to traditional academic rigour and excellence in research, determined to make a global mark and to deliver a high quality student experience - will continue to prosper.”
It adds that the individual institutions in the group “will continue to collaborate between themselves and with other institutions on specific projects and issues as they arise”.