Document ReferenceNUP/52
TitlePhotographs taken at the opening of the new Nottingham University College buildings; 1928
Extent19 items
Access ConditionsAccessible to all readers.
Admin HistoryUniversity College Nottingham was founded in 1877. The College grew out of the 19th century desire to open up university education to people unable to attend the traditional universities of Oxford or Cambridge. The actual impetus for the building of the college was a grant of £10,000 by an anonymous donor to Nottingham Corporation, to provide an endowment for lectureships. The donation was given on the condition that the Corporation acquired or built suitable accommodation for the lectures.

Building work began on the new college buildings in 1877. The site chosen was a parcel of land known as Horse Pool Close which was already owned by the Corporation. Shakespeare Street had been built across the close in 1852. The foundation stone of the new college buildings was laid on 27th September 1877 and the college opened in 1881. Classes began in autumn 1881.

As the College grew it became increasingly apparent that the Shakespeare Street buildings were no longer adequate to meet the needs of the College. Lack of space meant that classes were crammed into basement rooms and attics never designed for that purpose. The influx of new students after the First World War exacerbated the problem with the number of day students alone jumping from 509 in 1918-19 to 1,011 in 1921. It was clear that new accommodation was going to have to be found if the College was to continue to grow and thrive. At the same time there was agitation among members of the College governing body for the College to be granted full University status. These two needs combined in 1920 when Sir Jesse Boot (later Lord Trent) made the first of a number of significant gifts to the University College. Over the following years he gave land at Highfields in Nottingham for the site of a new ‘East Midlands University’ and donated money towards the new buildings. Though the hope of establishing an East Midlands University was abandoned, Sir Jesse Boot’s donations of land and money proved a significant step towards the creation of a Nottingham University.

Work began on the new University College buildings (the present University Park campus) in 1922 on land donated by Sir Jesse Boot. The new college campus was officially opened on 10th July 1928 by King George V and Queen Mary. From this point on the majority of departments were housed on the new campus although some, such as engineering, remained at Shakespeare Street until 1946.
Custodial HistoryGifted by Nottingham City Museums and Galleries having been found by curator in one of the City Museum's Industrial History stores; provenance unknown
Content DescriptionNineteen monochrome photographic negatives. Variety of images including King George V and Queen Mary opening of the new Nottingham University College buildings on 10 Jul. 1928, the inside of the Trent Building during construction, and the workmen involved in constructing the buildings.

Note that there are two smaller negatives which possibly do not relate to the University: One showing a building with a domed roof [probably Nottingham Council House, whch was under construction at the time], and the other showing dignitaries in an open-topped car outside a building which appears to be a public house [NUP/52/18-19].

Originally enclosed within an envelope from Guy & Co. photographic stores, 38-40 Bridlesmith Gate, Nottingham. Handwritten customer name: Mr S. Curtis. Labelled 'University'.

Note that the following photographs were also taken at the opening ceremony: UR 1383, UMP/2/1/4, and NUP/6/2 (see those records for further details).

Reprographic copies can be supplied for educational and private study purposes only. The copyright for these images does not lie with the University, so please contact Manuscripts and Special Collections for further advice about all other use of images from this collection.
Related MaterialUR 1383, UMP/2/1/4 and NUP/6/2 (ACC 899/2)
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