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Durham University

Department of Geography

News Archive

Student dissertation inspired Geography graduate in founding successful construction firm

(2 June 2016)

Mr Baggett, who was born and brought up in the North East, said his undergraduate dissertation on the geography of student accommodation in and around Durham was fundamental in setting up his business.

It formed the basis of a business plan that, along with a £2,000 inheritance, helped Mr Baggett secure a Northern Rock loan to buy his first property, in Bowburn. He now has a multi-million pound property portfolio, he has also founded the Adderstone Group property development group and is a former North East Entrepreneur of the Year.

Mr Baggett said: "It's great to be back in Durham. The dissertation was an essential part of my founding what is now a property development, construction and property management business with around 300 employees".

"My time studying Geography at Durham prepared me very well because I didn’t just learn some skills but it opened my mind as well to geography all around the world".

The Geography department is ranked third in the world according to the 2016 QS World University Rankings. The refurbishment will improve both the research and teaching facilities, providing an enhanced experience for students and staff alike.

Professor Mike Crang, Head of Geography at Durham University, said: "It is a pleasure to welcome Ian Baggett back to the Geography department. His undergraduate dissertation on student housing paved the way for his successful empire while his postgraduate work opened up a world of opportunities here and in the Far East".

"We are very pleased to be working with him again and we are sure that other students will be inspired by his drive and determination".