The University of Bradford is a public research university located in the city of Bradford, West Yorkshire, England. A plate glass university, it received its royal charter in 1966, making it the 40th university to be created in Britain, but can trace its origins back to the establishment of the industrial West Yorkshire town’s Mechanics Institute in 1832.
The student population includes 7,480 undergraduate and 2,290 postgraduate students. Mature students make up around a third of the undergraduate community. 22% of students are foreign, and come from over 110 countries. There were 14,406 applications to the university through UCAS in 2010, of which 3,421 were accepted.
In 2005, a project to become an ‘Ecoversity’ was initiated, along with an £84 million redevelopment of the campus. The university aimed to reduce its environmental footprint by reducing waste and using sustainable materials. As part of this, Bradford became a Fairtrade University in December 2006.
As of 2008, several of the redevelopment projects have been completed. The Richmond Building has been partially re-clad with extra insulation and a new atrium; designed by local Saltaire-based architects Rance Booth & Smith; opened in December 2006, the roof of which uses ETFE – the same material used in the Eden Project. The university’s cancer therapeutics research centre was moved from a separate site on All Saint’s Road onto the main campus, into a new building which also provides conference facilities; the buildings on the old site were demolished in February 2008.
Redevelopment of the sports facilities was completed in summer 2009, and a new student village called “The Green” was constructed which opened in September 2011. The Green has the highest ever BREEAM rating for any building. Of the existing halls owned by the university, those on the Laisteridge Lane site were sold to Corporate Residential Management in 2005, and Shearbridge Green Halls were demolished in December 2006. Longside Lane halls and Kirkstone Halls were demolished during the first half of 2009.
The university has a “leading-edge 100-seat PC cluster” for teaching, learning and computer-based assessment, and there is an art gallery, theatre and music centre. The £84 million investment in the campus included a major refurbishment of the laboratories in the school of life sciences, creation of a new MBA suite and library at the school of management, refurbishment of the student union building, Student Central.
The university has won its campus the award for ‘Outstanding Contribution to Sustainable Development’ in The Times Higher Education Awards two years running.