Student life at the University of Southampton
The University of Southampton Students' Union (Us.), is sited in three buildings opposite the Hartley Library. One, the West Building, dates back to the 1940s in a red brick style, complementing the Hartley Library opposite; the main building was built in the 1960s in the Basil Spence masterplan. This was extended with new nightclub and cinema facilities in 2002. The newest building was built during the mid-1990s which includes the recently refurbished union shop, on the ground floor with a hairdressers and Unilink office on the first floor.
The student union is actually separate from the University of Southampton, and is its own business. It gets funds partially from the university to finance many of its activities. The multiple award winning student radio station, Surge, broadcasts from new studios in the main union building. The award winning website unionsouthampton.org was created and run by students at the university. A brand new purpose built studio has been constructed for the TV station SUSUtv. The student newspaper is now published once every three weeks as Wessex Scene. The Edge, originally an insert of the Wessex Scene, is now an editorially independent entertainment magazine.
Events are held in The Cube, the union's nightclub. The Cube also doubles up as the on campus cinema run by Union Films. The Bridge, the union's cocktail bar, and in theStag's Head, the union pub. National touring bands play in the Garden Court in the West Building.
Halls of Residence
The university provides accommodation for all first year students who require it and places in residences are further available for international and MSc students. Accommodation may be catered, self catered, have ensuite facilities, a sink in the room, or access to communal bathroom facilities. Each hall has a Junior Common Room (JCR) committee that is responsible for the running of social events and representing the residents to the students union and the university via the Students union JCR officer. Glen Eyre and Montefiore also have bars which are separately run by the students union and are staffed by current and ex residents.
The university's accommodation exists around two large complexes of halls and some other small halls located around the city, three of which are usually grouped into another collective entity. These are:
- Glen Eyre Complex – The complex lies less than half a mile to the north of Highfield Campus and houses approximately 2000 students. The complex consists of several building sets, designed over the years and arranged either around the central landscaped garden – the oldest buildings Richard Newitt Courts are separated into blocks A-G and are closest to the Glen Bar, students in these blocks have very small flats (between 4 and 6 to a kitchen with usually more than one bathroom), Old Terrace and New Terrace are close to the entrance, New Terrace s ensuite, Chancellors' courts, consisting of Selbourne, Jellicoe and Roll courts are the most modern of the accommodation with Brunei house, the most basic of accommodations, on the outskirts. Located across the road on the periphery of the site are Chamberlain Halls, which share most things with Glen Eyre halls – Hartley Grove, South Hill, Beechmount House. All Glen Eyre Halls are self-catered at present.
- Wessex Lane Halls – Located in Swaythling approximately one mile east of the Highfield Campus. The complex provides accommodation for over 1,800 students and currently comprises two halls of residence: Montefiore Hall, abbreviated as Monte (sub-divided into the four stages of construction), and Connaught, one of the original halls of residence of the university and sub-divided into the Old and New quads. Connaught Halls are fully catered. The complex also features South Stoneham House, a period building constructed in 1708, currently undergoing renovation and changes as a planned conference facility. The adjoining 17-storey South Stoneham tower block constructed in 1964 is undergoing major repairs.
- City Gateway Hall – Located in Swaythling one mile north east of the Highfield Campus at the intersection of two major roads. Opened in September 2015, the landmark building was included in the runners-up list of the 2015 Carbuncle Cup. Featuring a 15 story elliptical tower and two adjoining six story rectangular accommodation blocks the hall provides accommodation for up to 375 students.
- Mayflower Halls – Located in the city centre within the city's 'Cultural Quarter', and two-minutes walk away from Southampton Central railway station. The hall opened at the start of the 2014/2015 academic year, and houses over 1100 students in a mix of ensuite, premium ensuite rooms, as well as some self-contained studio and one bedroom flats.
- Archers Road – Lying two miles south of Highfield and housing 500 students, Archers Road compromises three halls on separate sites, grouped together for their close proximity alone. The three halls, Gateley, Romero and St. Margaret's, are all self-contained and self catered but share are reception and other community facilities.
- Bencraft Hall – Located a mile and a half north of Highfield and housing approximately 200 students, Bencraft is one of the smaller and cheaper halls of the university.
- Highfield Halls – Located adjacent to Avenue Campus and half a mile from Highfield campus. Highfield halls comprises Aubrey and Wolfe houses and both have on site catering. The site is also used as a University conference facility during the summer months when vacated.
- Shaftesbury Avenue and Gower Building – These two sites are used by mature and postgraduate students. Shaftesbury Avenue is located near Portswood and is a mile from Highfield while the Gower building is located on Highfield campus. These two are a small number of self-contained apartments, in the case of the Gower building, located above other university amenities.
- Orions Point – Located in Central Southampton, this accommodation is not owned by the university but does provide approximately 300 accommodation spaces in partnership with the university.
- Erasmus Park – Located in Winchester, this hall houses around 400 students studying at the Winchester School of Art.
The university also has accommodation located in Balmoral House and Victoria Place, Portsmouth and in Basingstoke for the use of Nursing and Midwifery students studying on placement in these areas.
The university is in the process of replacing the former Chamberlain Hall.
The university has libraries located on each of the academic campuses and in total the collection holds over 1.5 million books and periodicals.
The university's primary library is the Hartley Library, located on Highfield campus and first built in 1935 and extended further in 1959 and 2005.The majority of the books and periodicals are held there as well as specialist collections of works such as Ford collection of Parliamentary papers and the European Documentation Centre. In addition, the main library houses the Special Collections and Archives centre, housing more than 6 million manuscripts and a large archive of rare books. Specific collections include the correspondence ofArthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, acquired by the university in 1983, as well as the Broadlands Archive, including the Palmerstonand Mountbatten papers. The library also contains 4,500 volumes of Claude Montefiore's library on Theology and Judaism, the Ford Parliamentary Papers, Frank Perkins' collection of books on agriculture, Sir Samual Gurney-Dixons's Dante collection and the James Parkes Library of Jewish/non-Jewish relations. The library also includes six rare editions of the Divina Commedia; the first of these, the Brescia edition of 1487, is the library's earliest book.
In addition to the main Hartley Library, there are other libraries based at the university's other campuses primarily focused on the subjects studied at that location. As one of the smaller libraries and given its proximity to the Highfield campus, the Avenue Library only houses a collection of key Humanities resources. It does however also hold an extensive film library, many of an international nature. On a larger scale, the libraries at the National Oceanography Centre, Southampton General Hospital, Winchester School of Art are more complete and house the majority of the resources and specialist collections on oceanography and earth sciences, healthcare and art and design respectively. The Malaysia campus holds a small collection of reference books but the majority of the resources needed for courses at the campus are available online. Separate from the Hartley Library is the E. J. Richards Engineering Library, which contains further materials for more in-depth study and is freely accessible to Engineering students and staff.
The university's main Highfield campus is home to three main arts venues supported and funded by the university and Arts Council England. The Nuffield Theatre opened in 1963 with construction funded by a grant from the Nuffield Foundation of £130,000 (£2,450,000 in 2013). The building was designed by Sir Basil Spence as part of his campus masterplan with additional direction provided by Sir Richard Southern. The theatre consists of a 480-seat auditorium, that also served as the principle lecture theatre at the time of construction, as well as additional lecture theatres and adjacent Kitchen bar.
The Turner Sims Concert Hall was added to the art provision in October 1974 following a £30,000 (£460,000 in 2012) donation from Margaret Grassam Sims in 1967. It was made to provide a venue specifically for music following difficulties in gaining space in the Nuffield Theatre and due to acoustical differences with the spaces. The new space has a single auditorium, designed by the university's Institute of Sound and Vibration Research with musical performances in mind, with a flat space at the bottom so it could be used for exams.
The final of the three Art Council supported venues on campus is the John Hansard Gallery. The gallery was opened on 22 September 1980 but is housed in a building that previously housed a tidal model of Southampton Water between 1957 and 1978. It took over responsibility from a photographic gallery, a gallery in the Nuffield Theatre and one located on Boldrewood campus. It houses various exhibitions in contemporary art and is due to move to new premises in Guildhall Square in c.2015.
These three centres are supplemented by the Special Collections Gallery, located on Level 4 of the Hartley Library and showing exhibitions from the university's archives and special collections, as well as gallery spaces located at the Winchester School of Art campus. In addition, the western half of Highfield campus contain several 20th-century sculptures by Barbara Hepworth, Justin Knowles, Nick Pope and John Edwards.
There are two NHS practices on the campus: The University Health Service and Highfield Health. The larger of the two practices is University Health Service, with over 15,000 patients working from Building 48 between the Physics & Maths Buildings, whilst Highfield Health is the smaller practice serving around 3,000 patients from its location on 31 University Road.
The university's Sport and Wellbeing department runs the majority of the sports facilities on campus which are based predominately at two locations: the Jubilee Sports Centre and Wide Lane Sports Ground. The Jubilee Sports Centre, opened in 2004 at a cost of £8.5 million, is located on the Highfield Campus and contains a six-lane 25-metre swimming pool, 160 workstation gym and an eight-court sports hall. Wide Lane meanwhile is located nearby in Eastleigh and was refurbished at cost of £4.3 million in 2007. The 73-acre (30 ha) complex includes flood-lit synthetic turf and grass pitches, tennis courts, a pavilion and a 'Team Southampton' Gym. The university also runs facilities at the Avenue Campus, National Oceanography Centre, the Watersports Centre on the River Itchen and at Glen Eyre and Wessex Lane halls while there is another sports hall, squash courts, martial arts studio and bouldering wall located within the Students' Union.
The university competes in numerous sports in the BUCS South East Conference (after switching from the Western Conference in 2009).A number of elite athletes are supported by the SportsRec through sports bursaries and the UK Government's Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme (TASS).
The University Athletic Union was formally established on 29 November 1929, by the University College council. Versions of the union had existed previously to which many clubs such as Cricket, Association Football, Rugby, Boxing, Gymnastics, Tennis and Boat clubs (all formed before the turn of the 20th century) were members.
Mustangs Baseball Club
The Southampton Mustangs Baseball Club was founded in 1997. In the early years, the club participated in mainly friendly games against other British university baseball teams, as no formal university league was in existence. Starting in 1998, the Mustangs started to host a university baseball tournament – inviting other teams including Oxford, Cambridge, Portsmouth, Royal Holloway, and Norwich. In 2004 the Mustangs entered into the national adult baseball leagues run by the British Baseball Federation (BBF). The club entered in the lowest division, but after a few years of consolidation, the Mustangs have worked their way up from the lower leagues in the BBF to play in the top-tier league of the British baseball, the British National Baseball League (NBL), in the 2010 season.