Fears have been expressed over the future of early retirement schemes and pensions in the new independent institutions after it was revealed that polytechnics and colleges will have to fund them. Bill Stubbs, chief executive designate of the Polytechnics and Colleges Funding Council, told a conference at Lancashire Polytechnic: "At present there has been sharing of responsibility for certain costs in higher education and that will continue until April 1 ... If you as an institution believe that continuing the present arrangements is in the interests of the institution you should bear the costs."
The Government has turned down Hatfield Polytechnic's bid for university status. Robert Jackson, under-secretary of state for higher education, in a letter to Professor Neil Buxton, Hatfield Polytechnic director, pointed out that university status would not be possible without a Royal Charter. He also stressed that polytechnics did not share the same constitutional profile of the universities.