24th February 2011
Maidstone Greens have written to the University of Creative Arts asking for clarification following concerns that the Maidstone campus is likely to lose a third of its courses to other sites. Students have raised concerns that there are plans to relocate 4 of the 12 courses. Local Greens have not received assurances that the Maidstone campus will not be wound down and have repeated called for the university to clearly state that it will continue its long history with the town.
Stuart Jeffery, Maidstone Green Party: "After concerns were raise with us about courses being relocated to other sites, I wrote to the university expressing our deep concern that the campus might be closing. The UCA has so far failed to respond to these concerns.
"The UCA, and Art College before it, have been an integral part of Maidstone for many years and we were horrified that changes that would see a third of the courses disappear from Maidstone were even being discussed.
"It is clear that the government have fundamentally undermined the confidence of universities and students over the past 6 months with the dramatic rises in student fees and if this is the cause of concern at the UCA, then they need to say so. The UCA need to keep students, staff and local people engaged with their plans and we are calling again for them to make their plans transparent.
Letter to UCA:
Professor Dianne Taylor Gearing
University for the Creative Arts at Maidstone
7th February 2011
Dear Pro-Vice Chancellor,
I am concerned that the Maidstone campus is likely to lose a number of courses and for them to be relocated to another campus. I understand that Illustration, Animation, Photographic Arts, and Film & Video Arts are likely to be moved to another site reducing the number of your courses from twelve down to eight. While in the usual run of life moving courses from time to time would be natural, I am concerned that this might be the start of a closure of the Maidstone campus.
Clearly such a closure would be disastrous to Maidstone and its long and successful relationship with the UCA. I am therefore keen to learn whether my concerns are founded. I hope that you will be able to confirm that the Maidstone campus is safe from closure and will enjoy a long and successful future.
I look forward to hearing from you.