Meanwhile, at last week's Labour Party Conference, vice-chancellors flaunting the fact they were no longer pushovers suffered something of a setback at their fringe meeting. Universities UK delegates were packed into a cramped bar with a corridor framed by chairs running through the middle to allow access to toilets.
The original booking had been for a bigger room but there was a double booking and the Local Government Association out-muscled the vice-chancellors. UUK is plucking up courage to ask for a refund.
It wasn't the only UUK climbdown this week. When UUK adopted its current name, there were concerns that it implied that the organisation spoke for British higher education as a whole - although its membership is restricted to vice-chancellors and principals. Last month, UUK changed the strapline on its stationery from "the voice of UK universities" to "the essential voice for our universities". Tacit admission that it is not the only voice of higher education, perhaps?