Bristol University spent £20k renaming Senate House

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By John Stack, Second Year Mathematics and Philosophy

The renaming process took place over several months and consisted of online surveys, street surveys, workshops and consultations.

A Freedom of Information request by The Mail on Sunday has revealed that the renaming of Senate House, cost the University at least £20,000.

This comes following a report by Epigram in June that it had been decided that Senate House would retain its original name.

Nearly all of the money spent by the University is believed to have been used on external consultancies.

The design and delivery of a student 'street survey' cost £9,656.50 and was outsourced to a ‘strategic management’ firm. Around £10,000 is also believed to have gone to a communications agency, for its ‘specialist support’ and research.

Around two percent of the student population took part in shortlisting popular potential names.  A street survey of five percent of the student population resulted in Senate House being chosen by 22 per cent of surveyed students, followed by Student Hub (11 per cent), Jo Cox Building (10 per cent) and Campus Heart (10 per cent).

During specially led workshops, students were also encouraged to explore topics like ‘what’s in a name?’ and what Senate House means to them. International artist Fandangoe Kid was brought in to provide ‘tools for the students to share their thoughts and ideas through creativity’.

A spokesperson for the University of Bristol told Epigram:'The Senate House refurbishment is part of the Campus Heart programme to improve the University of Bristol’s buildings and services for students and aims to turn a former administrative building into one which is student-focused and substantially student-run.

'As part of this transformation it felt right to give our students the opportunity to choose a new name that would be more meaningful and relevant to them.

'We are very grateful to all the students who took part in this consultation. What it seems to show is that what we call the building is less important than what goes on in it.'

Featured Image: Epigram / Imogen Horton


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