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LU Text

LU Text is published by the Press Office on Fridays during term time and aims to keep you regularly informed of the University's news and developments. Editor, Vicky Tyrrell. To view previous editions see LU Text Archive.

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| 4 September 2009 | Issue 447

Contents: news; Lancaster in the news; people; building work on campus; notices; what's on; ads


Researchers and writers at Lancaster debate the shrinking globe

Hundreds of writers and researchers from across the world are heading to the North West this month (9-12th September) to share the results of a four year project, led by Professor Lynne Pearce (English and Creative Writing), which has investigated the impact of migration on creative writing in Manchester. To view the full story

How ‘tweeting’ was done in 1909

The Twitterati may believe they are pioneers in the world of social networking, but 100 years ago people in Edwardian Britain were doing something very similar, researchers have concluded. Using the Postmaster General's reports, Julia Gillen(Linguistics) and her colleague Nigel Hall have calculated that around 6 billion postcards (a remarkable 200 cards per person) were posted in Britain during the Edwardian era (1901-1910).Those who want a taste of Edwardian tweeting can find some of the cards that the researchers have collected by visiting the Twitter website and keying EVIIpc into the search box. To view the full story

Sports Centre

Enabling work has started for the new Sports Centre. A fence will be erected, the pavilion demolished and the ground will be prepared. Access to the rugby pitches will be maintained throughout the work. More information about the Sports Centre is available on the Facilities website http://www.lancs.ac.uk/facilities/projects.

Energy metering

In order to save energy and cut energy costs across the campus the Facilities Infrastructure team are installing electricity, gas, water and heat meters in all buildings. The meters will provide accurate readings of our consumption to help analyse where improvements need to be made. There should be no disruption to the water, heating or the gas supply. Most electric meters can be installed without loss of power however the buildings that will require isolation will be given advance notice. These power shutdowns will be co-ordinated with other maintenance work needed on the substations to try minimise disruption. The project will be completed by the end of October 2009.

Strategic Plan

The new Lancaster University Strategic Plan is now available to view online visit http://www.lancs.ac.uk/users/gap/GAP2009/strategic-plan.pdf

Update on pay negotiations

As staff will be aware, universities, represented by UCEA, have put forward their final pay offer of 0.5% for the year 1 August to 31 July 2010. The union Unite has rejected the offer and is now following the new procedures for dispute resolution. The other campus unions are still consulting with their members.

An agreement, if it is reached, could take several months at which point the final award will be backdated to 1 August 2009.

The position of the University, as an employer, is that the offer of 0.5% is realistic under current economic circumstances and in the context of:

* Pay in Higher Education has improved considerably in the period 2006-2009, with staff receiving minimum increases of 15.9% over three years and up to 26% if receiving increments.

* The pay offer is part of the total reward package which includes increments, where applicable, and generous pension benefits. The University is bearing the 2% (an increase from 14% to 16%) uplift in its contributions to USS pensions with effect from October 2009. There will be no increase in the employee contribution. The employer's contribution rate to LGPS has also risen in the recent past and is likely to do so again shortly.

UCEA is the Universities and Colleges Employers Association. Background information can be found on the website.

Lancaster in the news

Lancaster in the news - See media coverage for Lancaster University this week, including New Scientist and the Santiago Times.


Allyson Fiddler (DELC) is taking the plunge for CANCER RESEARCH UK by participating in the Great North Swim (one mile in the balmy waters of Windermere on Sat. 12 Sept.). If anyone would like to sponsor her or find out more, please visit Allyson's webpage at: http://www.runningsponsorme.org/allysonfiddler. Another colleague from Lancaster also taking part is Amanda Ross (InfoLab21). Amanda is participating for the RNLI, her sponsorship page is availble from this link. http://www.justgiving.com/Amanda-Ross.

Mary Hitch, a Music Masters student in LICA will be giving a recital of Contemporary Italian Vocal Music, as part of her final exam. It will take place in the Jack Hylton Room on 11th September 2009 1pm, all welcome.

Building work on campus

Landscape improvement works

For one more week the exit, (A6-bound) carriageway of Bigforth Drive (main University driveway) will be CLOSED to all traffic between 7:30am - 6pm Monday – Friday. This is to construct a new footpath between Bigforth Barn and the western roundabout as part of the landscape improvement project.

  • Vehicles - Diversion signs will be in place to direct all traffic exiting the campus out via Alexandra Park Drive and Hazelrigg Lane. Incoming traffic between the A6 and the western roundabout will not be affected during these works. Vehicles over 7.5 tonnes should exit via South-East Drive and Alexandra Park to avoid passing the Pre-School Centre. Please be aware that there is a cycle contra-flow lane on Alexandra Park Drive so cyclists may be travelling in this lane against the flow of traffic. Please do not cross the solid white line of the cycle lane.
  • Bus Services - All buses will exit the campus via SW Drive and Alexandra Park to rejoin the A6 whilst the exit carriageway of Bigforth Drive is closed. There will be no bus operations on SE Drive during this period so the bus stops outside InfoLab21 and Furness College as well as Alexandra Park (south) will be temporarily closed for another week.

Underpass works affecting traffic and motorcycle parking

  • Until Friday 18th September, contractors are undertaking piping work in the roof of the underpass. At times there will be temporary traffic signals towards the eastern end of the underpass as one-way only traffic flow will be possible.
  • Please note that the motorcycle parking area in the underpass is closed during these works. As an alternative, motorcycles can be parked in the designated bay in Bowland Area outside Security.

Road works

Resurfacing work will be carried out on Friday 4th September and Saturday 5th September on the inner avenues of the campus and SE section of the perimeter road. If you have any queries please contact Mike Harris, Building Surveyor in Facilities – Infrastructure 92383.

Fylde bar toilet refurbishment

Fylde bar toilets will now be closed until Friday 25th September for refurbishment. Alternative male and female toilets are available across the quad area and an another accessible toilet is in the laundrette, next to Pizza Republic.


The footbridge leading to InfoLab21 is due to be closed on Monday 7th Sept for an estimated three week period for refurbishment works. During this period access to the building will be via the access door at the bottom of the concrete steps by the footbridge which will be sign posted.


University heating

The heating will be switched back on from Monday 14th September. Heating in the majority of University buildings is managed using thermostatically controlled valves. Temperature sensors are located at various points in each building to ensure comfortable heating temperatures are maintained. Your heating will only come on if the sensor recognises it is cold enough and it is between the hours of 06:30 and 23:00.
Following the shutdown the heating system will take about a week to settle down as there will be air locks in the heating pipes which will have to be bled to ensure a steady flow of hot water through the system.

Electric heater policy

Due to health and safety issues associated with portable electric heaters the use of unauthorised heaters is prohibited throughout ALL university buildings. Portable electric heaters are only permitted with consent from the Facilities Maintenance department as they must be subjected to a Portable Appliance Test (PAT) to ensure they comply with the ‘Electricity at Work’ regulations. This then needs to be repeated on a regular basis. For more information on the policy please visit http://www.lancs.ac.uk/facilities/documents/Electric%20Heaters.pdf

Bus services

  • A new early bus service has started with a bus arriving at the underpass at 6.51am. The No. 3 bus service departs from Torrisholme at 06.15am, travells to the University via Lancaster city centre (bus station departing 06:35) and arrives at the University underpass at 06:51.
  • Increase in direct bus services From Tuesday 1st September 2009 the X1 bus service linking the University with Lancaster Railway Station and areas west of the city centre will be rerouted via the A6 through Greaves, rather than along its current route through Bowerham. This will increase the number of direct buses between Greaves and the underpass from 3 to 6 buses per hour during daytime Monday – Friday. A slightly revised timetable is available here.
  • Womens-only bus (X66) please note that this service will no longer be running.


For a full list of all items submitted for What's On, please see the Arts and Seminars & Lectures LU News web pages.

LICA MA show

Follow the link to view website. LICA MA show website

Royal Geographical Society (NW Region) and Lancaster Environment Centre Joint Seminar Series

"Gulf War Illness and 'radioactive' uranium weapons: health and environmental consequences”. Speaker: Prof Randy Parrish (NERC Isotope Geosciences Lab, BGS Keyworth). 14th October 2009. Follow link for further details http://domino.lancs.ac.uk/info/lunews.nsf/E/C7AE9C8E3B04C92580257627003660F1?OpenDocument.

Lectures & Seminars


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Contact Victoria Tyrrell on (01524) 594120 with items for LU text, LU News or for external publicity.
Events information should be sent to Laura Mitchell Press Office Assistant (01524) 592103.

LU text is usually published on Fridays. On occasion it is necessary to delay publication until the following week. ITEMS FOR INCLUSION SHOULD BE EMAILED TO THE EDITOR BY 12PM THURSDAY BEFORE PUBLICATION. Adverts are limited to University members and we are unable to check incorrect contact numbers or email addresses. All attempts will be made to include adverts sent via email, but no guarantee is made. The editor reserves the right to edit copy. The opinions expressed in this bulletin are not necessarily those of the university management.

Design by Lancaster University's InfoLab21, an ICT Centre of Excellence www.infolab21.lancs.ac.uk