Here’s Leeds Trinity University on a postcard from the 1980’s, back when it was Trinity and All Saints College.
The campus is to the North of Leeds – you can see the edge of Horsforth at the top of the card. Originally the university was two colleges – Trinity, on the north of the site, was for women, and All Saints, to the south, for men. Both were catholic teacher training colleges founded in 1966.
A history of UK higher education for the next half century can be read through Leeds Trinity’s development:
- Diversification of provision and growth in the number of courses and students in the 1970’s
- Merger in the 1980’s to create a single college
- Retrenchment in the 1980’s: closing economically unviable courses, growing numbers on other programmes
- Accreditation by the University of Leeds after the demise of the Council for National Academic Awards
- University status in 2012, when the size criterion was reduced
Leeds Trinity also claims the longest student sit-in in the UK – against the 2012 fee rises. But in a very Leeds Trinity way, it was done with the cooperation of the university, using empty offices so as not to disrupt teaching and exams – and to avoid imposing costs on the university.
And the occupiers were supported by staff very practically – with tea and cakes.