Located on a beautiful campus in the North West of England, the University places great emphasis on a strong student experience and employability and gives students access to academics who are experts in their field.
Lancaster is one of only a handful of universities with a collegiate system, which has helped to forge a strong sense of identity and loyalty, and continues to be a distinctive feature of student life at Lancaster. Students from one hundred countries make up a thriving community based around our nine colleges, creating a culturally diverse campus in a location that boasts the combination of city, coast and countryside.
Lancaster's community extends far beyond the campus itself. Students and staff alike can be involved in research and teaching as part of our student exchange partnerships with leading universities and institutions in 24 countries around the world.
More than £450 million has been invested in our campus in the last ten years with a further £135 million planned for the next three years. Our 360 acre site has all the facilities you will need throughout your student life at Lancaster.
We hope you will find this guide helpful to navigate a suggested route through campus but please feel free to wander at your leisure and enjoy our beautiful grounds.
Lancaster is one of six collegiate Universities across the Country with 8 Undergraduate Colleges to choose from. Each College has its own accommodation, social spaces and bars, study areas and College Officers – even a launderette complete with electronic monitoring; so you can see which washing machines are free to use, or even how long your wash has until the cycle is finished, from your PC or mobile device in the comfort of your study bedroom!
A College Porter is on-site 24 hours a day – 7 days a week during term-time. Students collect their mail from the Porters Lodge so you really get to know the team. The College Administrator and College Residence Officer are on hand too. The College “Senior” members (SCR) work closely with a team of elected “Junior” student members (JCR) to help make them the success they are today.
College life is a unique element of student life at Lancaster which makes the University experience warm and welcoming. Friendly rivalry between Colleges creates sense of community within Colleges whilst students are able to use all College areas interchangeably. Importantly, students graduate as a College at the end of their degree.
The Colleges offer a variety of award-winning accommodation to suit your budget and requirements with options to be self-catered, or catered (breakfast & evening meals can be eaten at Refuel @ County to the North of campus or Refuel @ Barker House Farm in Alexandra Park to the south).
With 360 acres of land on the main campus, finding a patch of grass to lay your picnic blanket on isn’t a difficult task. With several BBQ stations, outdoor social gatherings are frequent at Lake Carter.
The perimeter of campus offers an interesting woodland walk (or run for those of you who are active) . There is an outdoor “trim trail” with various equipment (and instructions thankfully) for a work-out.
Alexandra Square is located in the heart of the campus. A main meeting point for students and staff alike; it offers a range of shops and facilities. There are banks, a bakery, a hairdressers/barbers, travel agents selling holidays, concert tickets and train tickets too - there is even an ice-cream parlour sourced from a local dairy farm.
There are 2 points of access to “The Spine” which is a walkway spanning North to South ends of campus. In addition, the transport hub known as the “underpass” is located beneath the Square accessed through the 2 stairwells or lift adjacent to the library. With 16 buses per hour running to/from the city the University is well- connected to the city and rail networks.
The Library entrance is within Alexandra Square adjacent to “The Base” which is a staff-managed hub offering a one-stop support service to students. Matters relating to finance, academic, disabilities and welfare issues can be directed here for a prompt service.
The Learning Zone is a 24-hour study area offering a variety of learning environments to aid students in their studies. Students can book a “pod” for specific group-work and use the interactive smart boards for presentations or choose to work in a quiet “waltzer-style” seating arrangement. In addition, University laptops can be borrowed with a quick swipe of your library card.
A team of computer professionals are on-hand to offer support with technical queries during the day and access during the evening hours onwards is granted by library card. Wi-Fi is available throughout the building as with most buildings on campus including accommodation.
The Library is open twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. The Library contains over a million on-line articles, books and journals that students can check out through the self-checkout service; books can be checked-out and renewed with ease. Additionally, articles and journals can be accessed online for free with students’ University login credentials.
To the first floor there is a Reading Room overlooking the scenic University entrance and captures natural light for a comfortable learning environment. There is a combination of group work areas, IT and printing facilities, as well as silent study areas which are marked throughout the Library.
Currently undergoing a major refurbishment due to complete in early 2016, all Library services are operating as normal with alternative study spaces situated all over campus including computer labs and college spaces.
The home of the Chemistry department with 3 large lecture theatres used by all subject areas. You are more than welcome to view one of the lecture theatres in this building (checking through the door pane that there isn’t a lecture in progress first please!).
County College proudly sits at the North end of campus around Lancaster Square. The large windowed building to the north-west of Lancaster Square is the Lancaster Institute for the Contemporary Arts or LICA. This award-winning eco-building is home to large dance studios, teaching spaces and unique meeting pods within the woodland area.
The Great Hall complex can be found to the west of the Square which is home to Europe’s largest “black-box” theatre, the Nuffield Theatre. Major events are held in the Great Hall including the Graduation ceremonies.
The Chaplaincy Centre is a multi-faith centre located in Bowland Avenue. Here you will find Christian, Islamic, Buddhist and Jewish faith representatives in chapels and prayer rooms. Bowland College surrounds the Chaplaincy Centre with accommodation and social spaces within easy reach of Alexandra Square.
The University offers the services of a Post Office to enable both UK and international students to stay connected. (Full mail services, a Bureau de Change offering preferential rates to students showing their NUS card as well as the ability to send and receive cash through MoneyGram, purchase phone cards, car tax and postal orders too.) Along with the Students’ Union Shop, University and College memorabilia is available for that personal gift.
In addition, Edward Roberts Court houses an Indian restaurant and takeaway, a Spar shop (offering a vast selection of products including a hot- food counter) and a charity shop, for those fancy-dress essentials!
The University offers a free bus to Sainsbury’s Superstore in the City on Wednesdays hourly from 11:00am. Students (and parents) also have the option to order on-line groceries to be delivered to campus from the major supermarkets.
Furness and Fylde College can be found close to this area – look out for their signs.
Our new eco-building, officially opened in March 2015 by the new Chancellor, Alan Milburn, boasts a world-class environment with specially designed General Engineering workshops, teaching laboratories and office areas.
On the ground floor, you will see a light and airy glazed central atrium which houses mechanical workshops, additive materials printing and polishing laboratories. Chemical Engineering and Team Project Centre are situated on the B floor with Electronic and Electrical Engineering and Nuclear Engineering on level C. Floors C and D provide further academic office space, study and social spaces along with undergraduate computing facilities.
Here at the south end of campus you will find a mixture of Colleges including accommodation, academic teaching spaces, retailers and restaurants. The George Fox building houses a suite of lecture theatres including one of our largest, seating 350 students. In the Management School you will find an airy atrium with a coffee shop and a host of lecture theatres, break-out spaces and meeting rooms – pick up a free copy of the Financial Times newspaper whilst you're passing through. Grizedale and Pendle Colleges are adjacent to each other here with Cartmel, Lonsdale and Graduate close by, at Alexandra Park.
The University has an NHS Doctors surgery, which students are eligible to register with, adjacent to the Management School and Pre-school. We also have a pharmacy and a private Dental surgery within the main campus.
The University invested twenty million pounds into the Sports Centre, which was opened in 2011. Facilities include a swimming pool, climbing wall, bouldering cave (designed by our former Chancellor, Sir Christian Bonington), squash courts, sports hall, gym, and weights room. The gym is open to both the public and students; students benefit from reduced prices and can opt to pay-as-you-play or buy a range of monthly memberships.
Please feel free to pop to the Sports Centre who will gladly offer you a tour and answer any questions you may have.