Never mind the students – London Union’s closure marks the end of a musical era
The University of London Union, for decades a centre of student radicalism, is to be dissolved after college leaders ruled it has become obsolete.
The ULU, Europe’s largest student union, representing 120,000 people, no longer “made sense” because the various colleges of the University of London have their own unions, according to a review of ULU’s services.
The union’s democratic function will be dissolved, and its central London building, which over the years has hosted large demonstrations as well as being the venue for early gigs by bands such as the Sex Pistols, will become a centrally managed student centre with a swimming pool, fitness centre, shops, cafes and bars.
The ULU was founded in 1921 and moved to its current Malet Street headquarters in 1957. The building served as a rallying point for marches during 2010’s student protests.
The changes, which are set to come into effect in July next year, will be resisted. ULU’s president, Michael Chessum, said: “I honestly can’t imagine a situation where students who have been some of the most radical, and ULU having been such a space for that radicalisation, will simply surrender the building to management.”
College leaders say fewer than 3,000 of ULU’s 120,000 students voted in the last university-wide elections, and students were better represented by college-level unions. “This is not about switching money away from students, rather it is addressing the federal structure that duplicates a lot of the services already provided by student unions,” Paul Webley, director of Soas, who led the review, told Times Higher Education.
Grace Dent on TV The Secret Life of the Pub is sexist, ageist and a breath of fresh air
Art Megumi Igarashi criticises Japan's 'backwards' attitude to women's sexual expression
Ray Davies' Sunny Afternoon scoops the most awardsTheatre
Grace DentChannel 4 show proves there's no app for happiness
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Alan Rickman admits editing 'terrible' script with friends in Pizza Hut behind backs of writers on Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves
- 2 Rarest Beanie Baby of them all could be sold for £62,500 on eBay
- 3 Professional big game hunter Ian Gibson crushed to death by elephant during hunt
- 4 Farmer told to tear down mock-Tudor castle after hiding construction behind hay bales
- 5 Rebecca Francis accuses Ricky Gervais of using 'influence' to target female hunters after receiving barrage of death threats
Better Call Saul creator Peter Gould on the creative concerns of a prequel, season 2 and the mind-numbing realities of the small courts
Britain's Got Talent 2015: RSPCA investigating Marc Metral's miming dog after cruelty complaints
Doctor Who film will definitely happen, leaked Sony emails reveal
Fifty Shades of Grey movie shows first sex scene 'after 40 minutes'
The Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice trailer has leaked – watch
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
The only black face in the Ukip manifesto is on the page about overseas aid
Ukip is the only main political party to not address LGBT rights in its manifesto
Food banks: One million Britons will soon be using them, according to Trussell Trust
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling
BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate