150,000 students still without loans

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Nearly 150,000 students are still waiting for grant and loan payments more than a month after starting university.

The news yesterday prompted student leaders to demand the resignation of the chief executive of the Student Loans Company, Ralph Seymour-Jackson. The company approved 844,000 applications but only 698,000 people have received their first payments. A further 141,000 are still waiting to have their applications processed. There were 985,000 university applications this year, up from 903,000 last year.

"Hundreds of thousands of students have been affected... and have endured a miserable start to the term," said Wes Streeting, of the National Union of Students.

"SLC bosses have sought to apportion blame anywhere other than their own doorstep. It is time for Ralph Seymour-Jackson to take full responsibility for this shambles and resign immediately."