Wednesday, 24 November 2010


As part of the national Day of Action against educational fee rises and cuts (Wednesday 24th November), 60 of us have begun a peaceful occupation of the Fine Arts building of Newcastle University, from 5.30pm.

We occupy in solidarity with all other universities across the country, condemning cuts to Higher Education, Education Maintenance Allowance and against a rise in tuition fees.

Our occupation of the fine art building is in recognition of the devastating cuts to arts and humanities that have been proposed.

We demand:

  • That there be no victimisation of the students involved in this occupation nor disciplinary action taken against them, and that they be marked as present at the lectures or seminars they miss as a result of this occupation.

·           That the University send out a statement of support for all pupils/ students from schools, colleges and Universities involved in this protest and occupation requesting that they should not be penalised for these actions.

  • That the University release all documents regarding education cuts at this establishment to students and lecturers.

  • That the University release an official statement rejecting the Government proposals for Higher Education, condemning any education cuts or rises in university tuition fees and acknowledging the current breakdown of democracy that has lead to these student protests.

  • That the Vice Chancellor, Chris Brink, write and send an open letter to the Government appealing to them not to implement cuts and to call for Vice Chancellors across the country to unite against cuts in the education budget, any rise in tuition fees and the removal of Educational Maintenance Allowance.

We urge:

  • That all teaching staff devotes some teaching time over the next week to discuss the impact of these education cuts on students, staff and society.

  • That other Universities, schools and colleges release statements rejecting the cuts to higher education, tuition fee rises and the removal of the Education Maintenance Allowance.

  • That lecturers are free to voice their opinions on the issue of cuts without the fear of reprisal from the University.


  1. Isnt this like blackmail? You hold the building and issue demands in return for its release. Seizure of property and offering conditions for its release is criminal activity last time i checked.

  2. I don't think they're preventing lectures or learning from taking place. Also; shouldn't students have some influence over the funding decisions taken by their university?

  3. An occupation is generally considered to be in place when you establish sole control over a property and wont relinquish it to the proper owners or users. So either they are occupying and are in the wrong or they are lying about occupying to make themselfs sound big. Yes they should have control over the decisions of finance. Dont get me wrong i think this governments actions are punishing the newest generation for the greedy and shorted sighted actions of the last generation in the public sector and banking. However i dont think occupying a building is going to do much good. Get a mass voter registration drive going among the students that will really scare the politicians. Also you could organise a mass refusal on fees or accomodation charges.

  4. Well, if we agree on outcomes, let's try to help each other and not quibble on tactics.

  5. We've occupied the building, although we refuse to get in the way of education so we'll allow lectures to continue

  6. I think what their doing is amazing, there are far to many people in this world that will talk about change and what needs to be done but do nothing about it, at least a group of people are peacefully trying to show the world that they believe in something and will speak up about it. Is it better to speak up about our beliefs or to live a lifetime next to the injustices.

  7. So how is it an occupation? Also tactics are very important i wont support violation of the basic laws of the land. IE property, saftey and personal liberty

  8. ...and how on earth is this blackmail...we never said we wanted the fees to raise, a small minority of smart suited politicians make our laws that we have to live by. When we say no we don't want that, it will affect us, our family's and our futures, the smart suited and booted men of London say OVERRULED we will go ahead with it anyway, and then the small people that it affects are meant to hide away in the corners and go... 'well we said no once, what can we do' But NO they refuse.. They demand to be heard, We demand to be heard, we have tried to speak politely we have tried your talk, we even tried wearing suits, but you did not listen.... so listen to this, our body's staying here where you do not want us until you listen. And listen they will because we DEMAND IT this is not blackmail this is forced democracy you have to listen to the masses... it should not be forced democracy because after all do we not live in a democratic state, or is this just something that we are told so we keep quite cause we have the vote?


    Solidarity from California!

  10. Brilliant demands guys. Keep it up.