Ousted scholar off to Oxford

July 7, 1995

Cyril Edwards, the German medieval and linguistics scholar who was made redundant by Goldsmiths College last year on the grounds that his subject was not in demand, has landed a full-time job at Oxford University.

But Dr Edwards, who was the only member of staff made redundant on the grounds of his subject when the college faced financial problems, said that the Association of University Teachers' High-Court action against the college would continue.

Last year he was told by a High Court judge that there was a strong case against the college for unfair dismissal. The plan is to follow this by an industrial tribunal case for breach of contract.

"What I would particularly like is a public apology from the college, and this would include recognising that I was not thematically redundant. I think this would be of great help to other staff in universities because it might prevent other institutions trying to do the same thing," Dr Edwards said.

Dr Edwards, who has an international reputation as a German scholar, is to become joint stipendiary lecturer in German for two years at Lincoln and Merton colleges. He says that at the end of this period at least he will be able to take early retirement, for which he is not eligible at the moment.

Since his redundancy Dr Edwards has been doing hourly paid work in Goldsmiths historical studies department. Only last week, Kenneth Gregory, the warden of Goldsmiths, offered him a 0.5 lecturing contract from July l via the AUT. Other staff who were made redundant were also offered part-time contracts.

Dr Edwards has consistently argued that his subject is still being offered in the college prospectus.

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