Anger mounts over fee and rent increases at Lancaster University

Students at Lancaster University held a mass protest rally against tuition fees in the campus' Alexandra Square.'Students at the demonstration.  PIC BY ROB LOCK'3-12-2014
Students at Lancaster University held a mass protest rally against tuition fees in the campus' Alexandra Square.'Students at the demonstration. PIC BY ROB LOCK'3-12-2014

One hundred students, union reps and members of staff gathered to protest against the increase on campus rent and fee prices at Lancaster University.

Students joined the national rally, ‘no fee, no debt’ to demonstrate their anger and frustration towards the proposed hikes.

Billboards, placards and voices of concern filled Alexandra Square, on Wednesday, December, 3, at 11.30am to campaign for a fairer and freer education.

Students and staff are growing increasingly concerned the 2.5% increase on campus rents will force many into poverty if there is no further financial support.

Jack Filmore, 21, city councillor for the University ward, said: “If there is no accommodation on campus available for less than £100 a week it forces students into paying for accommodation they really are going to struggle to afford.

“The university is not strapped for cash, we are questioning what is their objective to the rise in fees?”

Lancaster University are also proposing a 5% increase on post-graduate and international course fees.

Post-graduate courses are not capped by government, unlike undergraduate courses.

More than 200 signatures voted to support Lancaster student union’s (LUSU) opposition to the proposed increases.

LUSU also received a number of responses to its call for students to outline the financial difficulties they find themselves in.

Johnny Unger, member of University and College Union and lecturer in linguistics, said: “I think students standing up for their own interests shows they care more about their future. It is important that staff come together for their students.”

A spokesman at Lancaster University said: “The protest is ongoing. University management are talking to students about their concerns and additional security measures were put in place on campus.” The protest followed from a national rally on November 19.