Bringing SU Activities to Fallowfield

Most students would agree that Fallowfield is the heart of Manchester’s student community.

Manchester is a ‘city-based’ university that implies a lack of a real campus and having many buildings and student residential areas spread out across the city.

Manchester does not entirely fit the definition as you have two main distinct university areas:

  • One compact university campus with offices, classrooms, lecture halls, library and so on. This area can be defined as ‘work’ and ‘study’. There is also ‘North campus’ but the university is planing (on the long-term) to move the remaining courses to new facilities that will be built on the south campus.
  • The student accommodation area is totally separate. This can be found mainly  centred round Victoria Park, Fallowfield and Whithinghton but it stretches down to Didsbury, Levenshulme and then up Rusholme and into the city centre.

And where is the Student Union located? It’s in the virtual ‘study campus’ so it is hard for many people to reach it and once you leave the building in the evening you are surrounded by a sleeping city with no sign of life as everything nearby is shut (except Jabezz C. pub).

Owens Park is a much closer location to most students’ accommodation than the university area is and many people could reach it on foot.

Quick estimation of how long it would take to walk from Owens’ Park to the different areas listed (obviously it will depend on your pace and the amount of drinks you had but this estimate is based on ‘Google Maps’):

O.P. to Whithinghton centre, outside the library: 16 min (0.8 miles).

O.P. to Victoria Park area : 24 min (1.2 miles)

O.P. to Rusholme (near petrol station): 21 min (1.1 miles)

O.P. to Didsbury Village: 33 min (1.7 miles).

Whilst Fallowfield Centre to the Student Union building is a 33 min walk (1.7 miles).

My Idea:

  • To work in partnership with the Fallowfield Hall’s Residence Associations.
  • Use some of their common rooms, facilities and bars to offer the possibility to societies to hold meetings and socials there.

All offices, student media and meeting rooms would remain in the original building but there would also be the extra space that could allow us to create more facilities. This would not be up to me but I would suggest: a prayer room, a student-run restaurant (bigger then the pub and with different kind of food), a napping area (any student could rest without fear of being ‘spotted’), a small gym and other facilities that students could use to relax, pray, study or eat whilst they are waiting for their next class or perhaps to take a break from revision.

On a more complicated and long term project entire halls could be taken over by the SU and combine both student run accommodation and activities.

I thought about how this could be carried out in my former hall of residence which is no longer being used.

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