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Stafford university campus to close

Staffordshire | News | Published:

Thousands of students are set to move to the north of the county after it was announced Stafford will lose a main university campus.

Beaconside Campus in Stafford is to close by 2016, with all computing and entertainment technology degrees moving from the town to its base in Stoke-on-Trent.

Bosses at the university say the decision, which was made at a special meeting of the Board of Governors last night, 'makes economic sense' and will 'give students the best possible student experience'.

The university currently has around 16,000 students, with 5,000 in Stafford at its Beaconside and Blackheath campuses.

Members of the Staffordshire University Student Union have posted a video online reacting to the news.

University vice chancellor, Professor Michael Gunn, said: "Competition in the university sector has never been higher and we need to put ourselves in the best possible position to attract students to our excellent courses.

"It follows an extensive period of consultation which has included staff, students, education and local authority partners and the business community.

"It also takes account of an audit of the university's teaching accommodation which has determined that the average room use is far lower than in comparative universities.

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"We have consulted students and investigated what it is they want from a university education.

"What we know is that students generally show a preference for an edge of city campus with brilliant learning and teaching facilities, good public transport links and social activities – all of which we have in Stoke-on-Trent."

Reaction was swift to come in on Twitter.

The university's nursing and midwifery courses - which are commissioned by the NHS – and health courses like paramedic and public health are, however, to remain based in Stafford.

Staffordshire University Business Village, situated on Stafford Technology Park in Dyson Way, will also be maintained as a facility to support graduates wanting to start up their own businesses in Stafford, says the university.

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