Hetherington Building Farce

Cameron Buchan made this Freedom of Information request to University of Glasgow

This request has been closed to new correspondence. Contact us if you think it should be reopened.

The request was partially successful.

Dear University of Glasgow,

On 22 and 23 March 2011 the University of Glasgow created a farcical situation in dealing with their students who were occupying the Hetherington Research Club building. This involved the University’s own security guards and Strathclyde police (over 100 police officers, helicopters, etc) to evacuate the students. The evacuated students then moved to the Main Building where they took up occupation of the administrative offices. In negotiations the University made a historical U-turn and invited the students to return to the Hetherington Research Club building in exchange for them leaving the Main Building.

The Secretary of Court, Mr Newall, sent an e-mail to all staff to notify them of the days’ events. Here is an extract from the e-mail:

“…..In early afternoon, a group of student protestors forced their way into the Main University Building and occupied the Turnbull and Melville Rooms. I met with them yesterday evening. As well as raising concerns to do with planned higher education cuts, they expressed their anger at the way events had unfolded during the day. The students asked to have open access to sustain a student occupation in the Main Building. In discussion, it was pointed out that this would potentially have a very disruptive effect on staff and student activities. As an alternative, I have agreed with the students that they may return to the Hetherington Building and continue the occupation. I will discuss with them how they will exercise a system of control over those entering the occupation space. I will also give them an assurance that the University will not ask Police back on campus in respect of the Occupation unless in future there is a serious public order issue. ..’

In light of this please could you answer the following questions:

1. Could I please have the notes of the meeting between Mr Newall and the students occupying the Main Building?
2. What has been the overall cost of this unsuccessful operation to the University?
3. How much will the University have to pay the police for wasting their time and resources?
4. Will the University take disciplinary action against the manager responsible for this fiasco?
5. Could I please have copies of any correspondence between Mr Newall and the occupying students?
6. Did the University offer any hospitality to the students occupying the Main Building during the occupying period?
7. What facilities (e.g. heating, lighting, bedding, refreshments, etc) are provided for the occupying students in the Hetherington Research Club building? Please provide a breakdown of the costs of the facilities provided.

Yours faithfully,

Cameron Buchan

FOI Office, University of Glasgow

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Buchan,

Further to your Freedom of Information request, dated 23 March 2011 timed 12:21 hours, please find letter of acknowledgement attached.

You will find that the University's acknowledgement of your information request is in PDF (Portable Document Format) file(s) attached to this email.

The PDF file format is used for electronic distribution because it preserves the look and feel of the original document complete with fonts, colours, images, and layout. To open a PDF file you can download a free program called Acrobat Reader and install it onto your computer by clicking on to the following URL:

http://www.adobe.co.uk/products/acrobat/...

Yours sincerely,

Data Protection and Freedom of Information Office

Direct Line: +44 (0)141 330 2523
Fax: 0141 330 4920

Gilbert Scott Building
University of Glasgow
University Avenue
Glasgow G12 8QQ

The University of Glasgow, charity number SC004401

FOI Office, University of Glasgow

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Buchan,

Please find attached the University's response to your Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 request dated 23 March 2011 timed 12:21 hours.

You will find that the University's response to your information request is in PDF (Portable Document Format) file(s) attached to this email.

The PDF file format is used for electronic distribution because it preserves the look and feel of the original document complete with fonts, colours, images, and layout. To open a PDF file you can download a free program called Acrobat Reader and install it onto your computer by clicking on to the following URL:

http://www.adobe.co.uk/products/acrobat/...

Yours sincerely,

Data Protection and Freedom of Information Office

Direct Line: +44 (0)141 330 2523
Fax: 0141 330 4920

Gilbert Scott Building
University of Glasgow
University Avenue
Glasgow G12 8QQ

The University of Glasgow, charity number SC004401