Students ‘moved out’ to make room for science festival

Postgraduate students at the University of Bradford claim they are being kicked out of their accommodation over the summer so rooms can be rented out to people attending a science festival.

April 10, 2015

Source: Alamy

Bradford said that some of the rooms will be used by academics and festival staff, but that cleaning and repairs will also be taking place over the summer ahead of the next new student intake.

The Green, a £40 million student village, accommodates 1,026 students at Bradford’s campus.

The accommodation was sold to an unnamed investor represented by a Dubai-based firm in 2013 for an undisclosed sum, but is managed by the university.

The university is hosting the British Science Association’s Science Festival between 7 and 10 September.

An email sent to students on 20 March by an accommodation services manager at the university says: “Unfortunately, due to the high demand for accommodation over the summer period this year, we can only accommodate residents who wish to stay with us over the summer and through into the next academic year.”

It offers students the chance to apply for alternative accommodation at nearby Arkwright Hall.

Kellen Phillips is on a 51-week master’s course at Bradford and has been told he will have to move out of The Green. “I was directly told that the science festival is taking priority and they are not letting us stay but they are letting people from the science festival stay instead,” he said.

He knew that his current accommodation contract would expire in July. But he said that he was told when he applied that the university had offered extended contracts over the summer for students in previous years.

“Legally they are right; morally I think it is wrong because we are here to focus on our studies,” he added.

Chris Spargo, head of commercial services at the University of Bradford, said that a number of students are accommodated at The Green over the summer, but it “cannot guarantee to meet every student’s requirements”.

holly.else@tesglobal.com

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Reader's comments (2)

Ridiculous. They are out of contract from 1st July- the university accommodation provider are free to do what they want with their accommodation. This is sensationalism about a story that really doesn't exist. If I was staying in a hotel for a week and before I left they said that I could stay on but had to switch rooms, I'd be absolutely crazy to complain that I couldn't stay in my existing but pre-allocated room. Crazy. The accommodation provider are absolutely right to do what they choose, have given their students an option for extension (something they are not obliged to do) so this is simply a badly written article designed to give a university a bad name- something everyone seems all too ready to do these days!
m an MA student living in the Green and I’m also angry and disappointed by their luck of moral. I was also told that I would be able to extend the contract to stay over summer before I made contract with the accommodation. They may be legally right but morally wrong considering student accommodations are supposed to offer good learning environment. We will be focusing on our dissertation in July and it is a serious disturbance of our study to have to move out in July. Many of the residents are international students and don’t know how to express their anger and confusion they felt when they received the announcement from the Green. It seems like the company is taking advantage of the students’ disadvantageous position. There will be many students coming to the uni from my country this September and I will be asked where to live by them. I would not recommend the Green to them because there are many other options, which are close to uni and never kick out students in the middle of their study.

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