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Bristol students end occupation of Vice President's office after he agrees to pensions strike demands


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Bristol students have ended their three-day occupation of Vice Chancellor Hugh Brady’s office after the University responded to their demands and agreed to write in support of its striking lecturers.

The students took over the fifth floor of Senate house - where Professor Brady’s office is located - on Monday morning, in protest of the university's failure to support its lecturers in the ongoing pensions dispute.

Several meetings were held between the students, the Vice Chancellor and other senior staff across Tuesday and Wednesday.

During these meetings the students, who are part of the 'Student-Staff Solidarity' group, outlined their demands and concerns.

In the end they successfully negotiated and persuaded the VP to pledge to lobby the Government to address the situation.

Professor Brady also promised to write to UUK asking for an "independent, expert advisory board to bring fresh thinking” to the issue.

In a statement released last night, the students said:

“After meetings yesterday and today, following discussions around the UCU pension dispute with UUK, we announce that we as a group will be ending the occupation of the fifth floor of Senate House, University of Bristol.

“We are satisfied that our position and demands have been well represented to the Vice Chancellor and members of the Senior Management Team, who have made concessions on their position due to our actions and negotiations”.

The jublient students left the building last night to cheers from staff and students who had gathered outside.

Earlier this week Professor Brady confirmed no students would face any disciplinary action, as long as the occupation was a peaceful one, and even welcomed the students sleeping in his office. 

Speaking to the Bristol Post he said: 

“We have welcomed the students to stay in Senate House where they are safe and comfortable, with access to meeting rooms, kitchen and bathroom facilities and balcony."

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