Times Higher Education - Top 2

Campus facilities ranked top two in UK

The University of Leeds has risen to third place in the UK in the Times Higher Education Student Survey, which asks students about their experience while studying, and placed second for its campus facilities.

The survey goes beyond the usual measures to ask students about the details of university life that matter to them the most. Leeds is the highest-ranked among the Russell Group of research-intensive universities and also scored highly for its campus environment and extra-curricular activities.

The University was ranked second for its facilities, up one place from last year’s third position. Since the last survey, we’ve seen many developments on campus improving student facilities such as the £24.7m refurbishment of the Edward Boyle Library and the opening of the £5m Brownlee Centre and Cycle Circuit, plus refurbishments of the Leeds University Union and the School of Chemical and Process Engineering, in addition to further investments in our central teaching spaces.

Professor Tom Ward, Deputy-Vice-Chancellor: Student Education said: “This position is a wonderful tribute to the staff and students that make Leeds what it is: a University that excels in the quality of its teaching, its research, its international offer and – as this result testifies – in the way it nurtures its students by creating a supportive and friendly environment.

“The key is working together. We might have one of the largest campuses in the UK but we foster a small community feel. I think it’s something that we do very well indeed, and it’s great to receive this endorsement from our students.”

Read more about the Times Higher Education Student Experience Survey and the University’s ranking here.

Times Higher ed news story header

Our campus facilities are ranked top two in the UK

The University of Leeds has risen to third place in the UK in the Times Higher Education Student Survey, which asks students about their experience while studying, and placed second for its campus facilities.

The survey goes beyond the usual measures to ask students about the details of university life that matter to them the most. Leeds is the highest ranked among the Russell Group of research-intensive universities and also scored highly for its campus environment and extra-curricular activities.

The University was ranked second for its facilities, up one place from last year’s third position. Since the last survey, we’ve seen many developments on campus improving student facilities such as the £24.7m refurbishment of the Edward Boyle Library and the opening of the £5m Brownlee Centre and Cycle Circuit, plus refurbishments of the Leeds University Union and the School of Chemical and Process Engineering, in addition to further investments in our central teaching spaces.

 

Professor Tom Ward, Deputy-Vice-Chancellor: Student Education said: “This position is a wonderful tribute to the staff and students that make Leeds what it is: a University that excels in the quality of its teaching, its research, its international offer and – as this result testifies – in the way it nurtures its students by creating a supportive and friendly environment.

“The key is working together. We might have one of the largest campuses in the UK but we foster a small community feel. I think it’s something that we do very well indeed, and it’s great to receive this endorsement from our students.”

Read more about the Times Higher Education Student Experience Survey and the University’s ranking here.

  

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Parkinson Tower aerial shot

Parkinson Tower’s hidden secrets – the history of the bells and its current residents

As focus is inevitably drawn towards the University’s ambitious capital investment projects, including Nexus and the Sir William Henry Bragg Building, it’s easy to forget that the University of Leeds is home to a number of iconic buildings that have helped support such a high standard of research and teaching on campus. The most iconic of these must surely be the Parkinson Building (the location of which much of Sir William’s work took place)

The recognisable building can be seen from across the city (and features in the University’s logo) – the view of the city and beyond, from the top of the tower is incredible.

The Portland Stone building was designed by Thomas Arthur Lodge. It took 13 years for the building to be complete and open due to World War II. Construction started in 1938 and during the war the building was used as a Ministry of Food storeroom – it was not opened as a University building until 1951. The Grade II listed art deco building stands at 57 metres tall and was named after a major benefactor of the University, Frank Parkinson, who oversaw many new build projects from 1936 onwards.

When the bells were installed in the tower in 1953, there were doubts around using synthetic chimes, it was agreed upon that imitation chimes were out of the question. A chime of four bells was installed with a tenor bell having a pitch no higher than A-flat. The four bells, costing £1,863, weigh nearly 33 cwts (264 stone).

An original chime was composed and it was agreed that the chimes “should be obvious rather than complex, tuneful rather than attempting any particular melody and should imply the simplest of harmonies” and that they shouldn’t be reminiscent of the Westminster Bells in any way.

Professor Denny from the University’s School of Music recorded several compositions, the series to be approved is known as the ‘Leeds Quarter’.

At the first quarter hour they play: – G A D B G – 5 notes

At the second quarter they play: – G B A D B A G A B G – 10 notes

At the third quarter they play: – B A D G B A D B A B D G A D B G – 16 notes

At the hour they chime: – G B A D B A G A B G A D G B A D B A B D – 21 notes

The clock mechanism is serviced twice a year, along with other tower clocks at the University (Leeds University Business School, Devonshire Hall and the Brotherton Library) by Smiths of Derby. The exterior of the tower is cleaned and the masonry is checked every 6-10 years, in 2012 it was scaffolded, cleaned and re-pointed – the hands of the clock on all four sides of the tower were removed and the clock mechanism was overhauled at the same time.

A recent visit to the tower was not to check on the masonry or the clock, however, but to check on the habitat of one of its residents. The University’s Sustainability Team have installed a box camera in the tower to observe and encourage breeding in a listed species of bird that has taken an interest in nesting in the tower over the last five years. Peregrines (latin name Falco peregrinus) normally like to nest on rocky outcrops on moorland, however, due to urbanisation, they are increasingly found in cities.

The vantage point of Parkinson Tower makes it an ideal location to nest for the peregrines (they previously had an interest in the dome of the civic hall!) The box and camera were installed in 2014 however, the birds chose another alcove leading to an unsuccessful attempt at breeding. Now that the box and camera have been moved, it’s hoped that the birds will nest this year.

Watch this space for more on the peregrines and with luck, a live feed of the box camera where we hope they will nest and breed from this year!

Notes:

  • Any works on the tower are completed outside of the nesting season to avoid disturbance of the peregrines (in line with legislation).
  • The peregrines are a schedule 1 listed species under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981.
  • They have a wingspan of 95-115cm and there are known to be 1,500 breeding pairs in the UK.
  • Thank you to Ripon and Leeds Bells for the published information on the Parkinson Tower, written by Chris Nicholson, retired from the University’s Estates Team.

  

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Disruptions featured image

Michael Sadler Building Disruption: 17 March for six-weeks

Date of disruption: Saturday 17 March for a six-week period

Engie, the contractor employed by the University and NHS Trust to fit out the Generating Station Complex (GSC), will be digging a trench from the footpath between Social Sciences and the Marjorie and Arnold Ziff Building around Michael Sadler Building to the corner of Baines Wing – this is to lay ducts to allow the installation of new electrical cables. The trench work will start on Saturday 17 March 2018 for a six-week period.

Services to be interrupted: External access disruption, local digging noise, and local road traffic management.

Effects of this interruption upon building occupants: Potential local digging noise and access disruption.

Information for disabled staff and students: The automatic single side door to Michael Sadler will be closed for four weekends, 17/18 March, 24/25 March, 30/1 April, and 7/8 April. Unfortunately this severely restricts disabled access.

For alternative entry to the Michael Sadler building, enter Baines Wing via the main entrance (automatic doors), then:

– Travel up the ramp past the reception area and turn right
– Continue along the corridor and up the ramp, following signs to Parkinson Court
– When you reach the doorway at the end of the corridor, turn right into another corridor, away from Parkinson Court.
– Go through two sets of automatic doors, towards Philosophy
– As you enter Philosophy (end of the corridor), take the automatic door to the right and then turn right.
– You are now on the ground floor of Michael Sadler and can navigate to the accessible lifts further along the corridor (automatic doors in between).

Download Disruption Notice (PDF)

Please bear with us as we continue to progress these essential works.

For enquiries please contact: Simon Gough S.J.Gough@leeds.ac.uk

Contact Telephone No: 0113 343 6988 / 07913 900088

If the above member of staff is unavailable, you have any general queries about our services or would like to add or remove a person from this email list, please contact the Estate Services Helpdesk on 0113 343 5555 or e-mail eshelp@leeds.ac.uk.

 

Thank you for your cooperation and we apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Bragg building new header

Information event: Sir William Henry Bragg Building

Date: Wednesday 21 March
Time:  2-4pm
Venue: Lecture Theatre G35, School of Chemistry

This information event is of a general nature and aimed at all staff and students across the University. Please click here to book your place.

As part of the University’s continuing investment in the campus, a new building – the Sir William Henry Bragg Building – is being built situated between the Schools of Chemistry and Electronic & Electrical Engineering on the northeast side of the campus.

Construction starts in late May 2018 and the new building will be completed in summer 2020.

This is a hugely important and exciting development for the University and we’re keen to inform and update you on the plans and progress to date and answer any questions you may have.  

The £96 million building is the largest single investment to date in the University’s estate and will become home to the Schools of Computing and Physics & Astronomy, with direct links to the School of Chemistry and Faculty of Engineering, forming an integrated campus of engineering and physical sciences.

The Sir William Henry Bragg Building will provide an exceptional environment for collaborative research, with high specification laboratories and facilities, and enhanced teaching space.

The building will also incorporate the Bragg Centre for Materials Research which will bring together researchers from schools across the University campus and beyond to create an environment that will foster ground-breaking, interdisciplinary research to accelerate impact on society.

If you have any further enquiries please contact campusdevelopment@leeds.ac.uk.

Disruptions featured image

Important Communication for Disabled Staff, Students and Visitors regarding Woodhouse Lane and Chemistry West: Disruption 5 March Until 2020

Date of disruption: from Monday 5 March until summer 2020

Work begins to prepare for the construction of the Sir William Henry Bragg Building.

Effects of these works: On 5 March, construction company BAM will erect new hoardings along Woodhouse Lane. This will result in disrupted walking routes and some potential traffic delays along Woodhouse Lane. Full construction work will commence late May and will be on site for two years.

For disabled staff, this will mean: There will no longer be staff parking bays or a taxi drop off point outside Chemistry West. Dedicated parking spaces for disabled staff are now located at Cloth Workers Central.

For disabled students, this will mean: The most direct route to Disability Services will be from University Road entrance, up from Cloth Workers buildings. However, this is closed until 26 March, due to urgent work being carried out by Yorkshire Water.

Directions:

  1. Travel down Clarendon Road from Woodhouse Lane.
  2. You will drive past the University Road junction off Clarendon Road, this is currently closed until 26 March, so please keep going down Clarendon Road. (Once the Univerity Road junction re-opens cars will be able to turn left on to University Road, from Clarendon Road and drive straight down to Cloth Workers Central Building.)
  3. Keep going down Clarendon Road until you reach Mount Preston Street on your left-hand side. Turn on to Mount Preston Street.
  4. Take the first left on to Cromer Terrace.
  5. Then second left on to Cloberry Street.
  6. Second right on to Clarendon Place.
  7. Then first left and first right on to Lyddon Terrace.
  8. Drive to the end of Lyddon Terrace then turn right on to University Road.
  9. Drive down University Road, you will pass the School of Fine Art on your left, drive under the bridge and you will arrive at Cloth Workers Central building on your left-hand side.
  10. Designated parking spaces are directly opposite Cloth Workers Central Building.
  11. Go through the Great Hall arches and follow the normal route to Disability Services office.

For disabled staff, students and visitors arriving by taxi and wishing to get to Disability Services this will mean:

Please ask your taxi driver to enter campus at the University Road entrance and follow the directions detailed above. These directions will take you to the designated disabled parking spaces at Cloth Workers South, where you can be safely dropped off.

If these changes affect appointments or visits to Disability Services please contact them directly by calling 0113 343 3927 or emailing disability@leeds.ac.uk.