Leer at these pretty university buildings, you filthy reprobate

Laura Sproule
Life

Eighteen of the most beautiful locations where students go to eat, sleep, study and repeat

From winning wars to producing world class literature, music and the Middleton sisters, the UK has truly helped to shape the modern world. And is it any wonder our minds are so beautiful when (some of) our unis look like this?! We picked a few of the UK’s cutest campuses. Scroll down to vote!

Aberystwyth University

Founded in 1872 as the University College of Wales, Aberystwyth University can be found on the west coast of Wales. With a stunning campus, coastal location and impressive list of famous alumni – Prince Charles even studied Welsh history and language here for a term during his time at University, AU is certainly one of the UK’s brightest and most beautiful.

Bangor University

Also a Welsh university, Bangor is situated in the north of the country in one of the smallest cities in Britain. It was established in 1884 as one of the founding member institutions of the former federal University of Wales. It became known as Bangor University in 2007 having become independent. The campus features many impressive buildings such as that housing the School of Business and boasts six libraries.

University of Birmingham

One of the original Red Brick Universities founded in the early 20th Century, Birmingham was the first independent civic university to be awarded full university status. The Aston Webb building and Joseph Chamberlain Memorial Clock Tower (affectionately known as ‘Old Joe’) are the features that make it one of the UK’s most beautiful university buildings.

University of Cambridge

The second oldest Uni in the UK was founded in 1209 by an association of scholars who left the University of Oxford after a dispute with townsfolk. Formed from a variety of institutions which include 31 constituent colleges and over 100 academic departments, the university consists of an abundance of beautiful buildings both old and new. Charles Darwin, Stephen Hawking and Magneto (Ian McKellen) all attended Cambridge.

Durham University

Established in 1832 the Durham Estate features an amazing 63 listed buildings, including the oldest inhabited university building in the world. The university is the third oldest in the UK and is known for its breath taking buildings – some of which were notably featured in the Harry Potter series.

University of Glasgow

Founded in 1451 Glasgow is apparently the ‘fourth oldest university in the English speaking world’ if sources are to be believed… The main University campus has been located at Gilmorehill in the West End of the city since 1870, and some think it ‘looks a bit like Hogwarts’.

University of Greenwich, Greenwich Campus

Despite looking like an old University, Greenwich is actually a former polytechnic and only became a university in the 1990s. The Greenwich Campus is located in the old Royal Naval College in London, where three of the university’s schools are based.

Keele University

Established in 1949, Keele University occupies 620 acres, making it the UK’s largest main campus. Largely rural with 19th-century architecture, Keele Hall and the university chapel feature among its impressive buildings.

King’s College London

King’s is another of the UK’s oldest unis. Founded in 1829, parts of it, such as St Thomas’ Hospital which is now a teaching hospital of the School of Medicine, has roots dating as far back as 1173. This world ranked university has spawned many big names such as Thomas Hardy, Virginia Woolf, John Deacon and Michael Morpurgo.

Leeds University

More than just the student drug capital, it’s also one of the prettiest campuses in the country.

University of Liverpool

Founded in 1881 as a university college, Liverpool is also one of the six original “red brick” civic universities and a founding member of the Russell Group. The red brick Victoria building was named after its founder, Queen Victoria. The red and white Chatham building houses the School of Management.

Newcastle University

Newcastle has one of the more interesting back stories; The University originally started as the School of Medicine and Surgery, which was established in Newcastle upon Tyne in 1834. In 1851, following a dispute amongst the staff, the School split into two rival institutions, the majority formed the Newcastle College of Medicine, and the others established themselves as the Newcastle upon Tyne College of Medicine and Practical Science. Both institutions later became part of the University of Durham. Throughout the early 20th century, the Newcastle medical and science colleges vastly outpaced the growth of their Durham counterparts and a Royal Commission in 1934 recommended the merger of the two colleges to form King’s College, Durham. However, growth of the Newcastle Division led to tensions and in 1963 an Act of Parliament separated the two, creating the University of Newcastle upon Tyne as we know it today. https://twitter.com/lakshsoni/status/482613931257888768

Nottingham Trent University, City Campus

One of the largest unis with a student population of over 28, 000 NTU boasts three campuses, the prettiest of which is undoubtedly City Campus shown below. Located just north of the City Centre, the site is home to over 17,000 Business, Law, Architecture and Art students amongst others. The Arkwright building (below) and the Newton building recently underwent a £70 million development regeneration.

University of Oxford

Whilst Oxford does not have an official date of foundation, there is evidence to suggest that teaching took place as far back as 1096, making it the oldest university in the English-speaking world and the world’s second-oldest surviving university. It is made up of various buildings scattered throughout the city housing 38 colleges. Famous alumni range from Margaret Thatcher to Hugh Grant and Jay Gatsby (sort of).

Queen Mary University London

With roots dating back to the founding of the London Hospital Medical College in 1785, Queen Mary College was admitted to the University of London in 1915. QM has four campuses with the main one being the Mile End in the east of the city. The Mile End campus is home to the university’s main library whist two more medical libraries are situated in the Whitechapel and West Smithfield campuses.

Queen’s University Belfast

First established in 1810 as the Royal Belfast Academical Institution, QUB is one of the UK’s 10 eldest universities. The Lanyon building is a popular attraction for tourists in Northern Ireland, and even features on the Bank of Ireland’s £50 note.

Richmond, The American International University in London

Although the original Richmond College, University of London was founded in 1843, what is known as the American University did not open until 1972. With degrees that are accredited in both the US and UK it is a popular choice for students from over 100 countries. The Richmond campus pictured below is the primary residence of undergraduate students. Its facade is the major symbol of the school and appears on its promotional literature.

Royal College of Music

Located in South Kensington, the Royal College in music was established by royal charter in 1882. Queen Elizabeth II acts as patron for the conservatoire, at which students can study music up to Doctorate level.

Royal Holloway

The Egham campus seen below was founded in 1879 by entrepreneur and philanthropist Thomas Holloway. In 1886 Royal Holloway College was officially opened by Queen Victoria as an all-women college. It did not admit male undergrad students until the 1960s.

St Andrews

When it’s not raining, Scotland actually has a lot to offer.

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