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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. To view previous editions see LU Text Archive.

See the Press Office news and events pages here

| 29 June 2012 | Issue 573

Contents: news; people; Lancaster in the news; notices; training and courses; what's on; ads


Underpass reopens

From Monday 2 July the underpass (below Alexandra Square) will reopen following the completion of the refurbishment work. All buses that currently arrive and depart from outside the Chaplaincy Centre will run from the underpass from Monday 2 July at 6.40am.

For more information on campus bus route modifications and bus services to and from the University please visit

Reinstatement of Bowland Avenue

Parking on Bowland Avenue outside the Chaplaincy Centre and Bailrigg Conference Centre will be temporarily closed from Monday 2 July for approximately one week to enable the contractors to reinstate the parking spaces to return the area to its original layout (with visitor & disabled parking and a drop off/delivery zone). Disabled parking spaces will be made a priority but temporary disabled parking will be available on the perimeter road in the current visitor area outside Bowland Hall during the work. Pedestrian and vehicle access along Bowland Avenue will be maintained but there may be the occasional delay. Facilities apologise for any inconvenience this may cause while they work to improve the area. Please contact the Facilities helpdesk if you have any concerns on 01524 593333 or

Lancaster holds onto high ranking in THE Table of Tables

Lancaster University has maintained its ninth position in the Times Higher Education’s annual Table of Tables. Lancaster is ranked joint ninth with Bath this year, while the top spot is held by Cambridge. The Table is calculated by combining the results of the top 30 UK universities in league tables compiled by The Times Good University Guide, The Guardian and The Complete University Guide. Full story.

Lancaster researchers discover potential new weapon against African crop pests

A team of scientists led by Lancaster’s Professor Ken Wilson (LEC) has made a novel discovery that could provide a new strategy for controlling armyworms and other insect crop pests around the globe. Crop pests such as the African armyworm are a major threat to global food security, especially in Africa and other parts of the developing world where chemical pesticides are too expensive for most resource-poor farmers. The African Armyworm is a voracious caterpillar pest which feeds on cereal crops, including staples such as maize, wheat, millet and rice, at densities of up to 50,000 caterpillars per hectare – sometimes resulting in total crop failure. Full story.

€1.7M grant for graphene research

The European Research Council (ERC) has awarded a €1.7M Advanced Grant ‘Graphene and Beyond’ to Vladimir Falko, Distinguished Professor in the Physics Department. The Advanced Grants enable ‘exceptional established research leaders to pursue ground-breaking, high-risk projects that open new directions in their respective research fields or other domains’. The funding will support Professor Falko and Lancaster condensed matter theorists Evgeni Burovski, Vadim Cheianov, Neil Drummond and Ed McCann in fundamental research in graphene (one- or two-atom thin layer of carbon), in searching for functional applications of graphene in devices, and in extending studies of atomically thin films onto a broader range of materials.

Adults with learning disabilities at greater risk of sight problems

Adults with learning disabilities are ten times more likely to be blind or have impaired vision according to researchers from Lancaster University. Professor Eric Emerson and Dr Janet Robertson of the Centre for Disability Research have carried out the first ever overall estimate of the numbers of people with learning disabilities and sight difficulties in the UK on behalf of the RNIB and the charity SeeAbility. Full story.

Making Professor event

On 25 September 2012 the University will be holding its third Making Professor event about academic promotion, career development and the benefits of flexible and inclusive working practices. This event, which will be opened by the Vice Chancellor and will include invited internal and external speakers as well as break-out discussion sessions, is part of the University’s Athena SWAN (Charter for women in science, engineering and technology) Action Plan. It is aimed at all academic and research staff on fixed-term or indefinite contracts, Heads of Department and everyone interested in equality and diversity in academic career development. Booking is essential, please apply by email to

Summer of Sport

The Sports Centre will launch its Summer of Sport at 1pm on Sunday 1 July with a performance by Turning Point Theatre Arts. A local Olympic torch bearer will be at the event and there will be an opportunity to have a photo taken with her and the torch. There will be a free Zumba class at 2pm and free swimming from 2pm to 4pm, subject to availability. The Summer of Sport will run until 30 September and will include several promotions including the chance to win a year’s Gold membership. The Sports Centre is also offering Platinum membership including classes for £1 a day during the Summer of Sport; terms and conditions apply. Visit for more information, email or call 01524 510600.

Flexible Benefits 2012 - 13

The annual enrolment for Flexible Benefits 2012 – 13 will open in the week beginning 6 August 2012 and will run until 14 September 2012. In preparation for this, please log into employee self-service to check that your home address details are correct.

LUMS launches Global Career Development Programme for Chinese students

LUMS has run a unique programme of events which develop the careers and employability skills of Chinese students studying at the School. Full story.


A study by Lancaster University Management School PhD student and police sergeant Ian Hesketh was shortlisted for the inaugural Chartered Management Institute (CMI) Management Article of the Year competition. His article Leading through change: To what extent is a transformational approach appropriate during unprecedented restructuring of the police? made up the top five in the competition which aims to bridge the gap between academic management research and practising managers working in UK organisations.

Distinguished Professor John Urry (Sociology) has just been appointed by Unesco's International Social Science Council as a member of the Scientific Advisory Committee preparing the 2013 World Social Science Report. This major report designed to show the role of the social sciences within climate change debates will be entitled 'Changing Global Environments'. John Urry recently attended a meeting of this committee and gave a related paper at the ‘Forum on Science, Technology and Innovation for Sustainable Development’ in Rio as part of the Rio+20 events held in June 2012.

This week Dr Marion Walker (LEC) has run the Catchment Change Network International Conference in LUMS with 80 international delegates which was followed by a celebratory workshop in LEC for Professor Keith Beven and Professor Andy Binley for their GLUE (Generalised Likelihood Uncertainty Estimation) paper which has reached 1,000 citations on the Web of Science.

Lancaster in the news

Follow link to see a list of people in the news.

Dr Hugh Tuffen (LEC) is to appear on BBC 2’s Volcano Live on July 10 featuring his expedition to Chile, and the UK Student Recruitment and Outreach Team are featured in The Lancaster Guardian about their project Target Uni.


Printed postage impressions (PPI) envelope changes

The new PPI came into effect on 23 June 2012 and departments have until 2nd January 2013 to use up old stock. The University’s PPI envelope supplier is now using this so will be included in new orders. Please contact Lynne Wilson in Procurement if a 2nd Class template is required to print onto labels. A 1st Class template is available but should only be used for sending out mail that is urgent. Please note - a 2nd class PPI can be used for international mail.

Do you use a hand held radio for your work?

Facilities are currently carrying out an information gathering exercise to find out who is using hand held radios for their work on campus. If you use one please contact Mark Salisbury in Security on 94086.

Lancaster University Conference Centre at Lancaster House Hotel

The Conference Centre at Lancaster House Hotel are offering a special Training Room hire rate of £150.00 per day, and beverages for £1.50 per serving, for new bookings with 15+ delegates attending during the months of July and August 2012. Lunches will be served from £8.95 per person. If you would like to take advantage of this offer please call Emma Parker on 92444.

Campus bars and cafes

Atkinson’s coffee is now being served in all campus bars and cafes. Graduate, Fylde and Grizedale Bars will all be open during the summer vacation at the following times:

All the above information can be found at

Training and courses

Staff IT Training

Upcoming free IT training sessions run by ISS, in the Library Training suites. If you would like to attend any IT Training sessions please book online.

More information is available on the ISS Staff IT Training pages.


For a full list of all events, please see Events.

Lancaster University Conference Centre at Lancaster House Hotel – Open Day – 4th July 2012 10.00am – 3.00pm

Come along and enjoy strawberries and cream with the Conference Team at the Lancaster University Conference Centre attached to Lancaster House Hotel. This is a perfect opportunity to view the Conference Facilities available on your doorstep and discuss any future events you may have planned. A free prize draw and discounts will be offered for bookings made on the day. For further information please contact Emma Parker or Emma Beaumont on (01524) 592444/594195.

Gradstock 2012

Friday 6 July, 3pm ‘til late. Day of entertainments for adults and children with stalls, games and sideshows. Evening of live music and DJs and a disco van. After party at the Dalton Rooms.

This event is open to all, for further information contact Jane Hulland or see the website.


All adverts - posted by staff.

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 (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.

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