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£1/2m investment for Durham University’s Stockton campus

(4 September 2007)

DURHAM University is spending half a million pounds on improving social facilities for the 2,000 students who attend its Queen’s Campus in Stockton.

The new facilities will enhance the University’s plans to develop Queen’s, following its commitment to an option to develop on the Stockton North Shore as part of the regeneration of the area. Recently-installed Pro-Vice Chancellor, Prof. Ray Hudson, will lead the campus’ development. The new £500,000 package of measures includes the creation of dedicated social space at Queen’s John Snow and Stephenson Colleges and the revamping of its Waterside suite. John Snow and Stephenson Colleges have been allocated £75,000 each to create a unique social hub to better reflect the sense of community and fellowship enjoyed by the students staying in college. Private office space, an internet café, a juice and coffee bar and dedicated TV lounges are included in the proposals from the colleges. Work has begun and the new facilities should be ready for the new intake of students in October. The University will be investing £350,000 to revamp its Waterside suite in the campus’ Holliday Building to provide additional facilities for all students, staff and visitors to the campus to enjoy. Planned changes include a staged area for live performances, new furnishings and lighting and a brand new licensed bar. Work will be completed in early 2008. The improvements follow the University’s decision to close the current student bar facility in order to provide greater choice, quality and value for students, staff and visitors in college and on campus. Durham University Vice-Chancellor, Professor Christopher Higgins, who was a student at the University in the 1970s, said: “Providing stimulating, welcoming and vibrant space and facilities for our students is at the heart of this investment. “We’re committed to working together to develop new facilities which will meet their needs and their vision for a campus which not only delivers a world-class learning and research environment, but a highly-valued pastoral, emotional and social experience too.” Joe Docherty, Chief Executive of Tees Valley Regeneration, said: "Durham University has demonstrated in recent months its intentions to significantly expand its business in the Tees Valley. “This investment, which will significantly enhance the student experience at Queen’s Campus, is another welcome example of the University's growing commitment to the Campus and the Tees Valley." In July Durham University announced its intention to expand its Queen’s Campus at Stockton across the river to the North Shore site by purchasing an option on four acres of land. The University has also given its backing to the building of a new landmark footbridge that will span the River Tees and link the North Shore development with the Teesdale area, a £15 million project which is being led by Tees Valley Regeneration.

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