Dons Shafted by Giant Lift
You can’t teach an old Don new tricks: academics battle university authorities over the decision to modernise the historic Old Schools Site.
Controversy is elevating between University Authorities and the University's Dons over the controversial plans to construct a lift in the Combination Room of the historic Old Schools site.
Cambridge Dons have expressed rising outrage over plans to build the lift in one of the University's oldest buildings, which was first opened in 1400.
The University’s parliament of Dons, Regent House, was not consulted over the works, as the works were classed as “minor” and so did not need their approval.
However, the news of Cambridge entering the modern era infuriated the Dons, and they have launched a campaign against the installation of modern contraptions in their beloved old building- despite the work now being already complete.
They have called the University’s plans to force through the motion an “abuse of power.”
Professor Gillian Evans, a member of the all-powerful Regent House has complained that the University has shown “no sense of [its] 800 years of history.”
The University has responded however by saying that “under the Disability and Discrimination Act the university is bound to provide access for the disabled in its buildings.”
However, access for the disabled proved a poor excuse for many Dons, who are focussing more on the principle than the lift itself.
Professor Anthony Edwards, a staunch critic of the motion, has said that members of Regent House should reject the council’s grace “emphatically”, and not to do so would “create a precedent that to all intents and purposes would give Cambridge a council answerable to no one”.
Fears of a police state run by lifts abound among many members of Regents House.
“The True cost to the University of this sorry saga is much greater than the money that may be wasted in removing this lift,” said Professor Christopher Forsyth, one academic who clearly hasn’t felt the pinch of the recession.
Professor Edwards concluded that “The lift saga has turned into the most important challenge to Regent House authority since I’ve been involved over the last 35 years”, demonstrating just how important Regents House is in keeping our University ticking over.
The Anti-Lift Crusade continues to climb to new heights.