There’s currently an anti-occupation protest happening outside the Arts Tower
Architecture students are not happy
This morning Architecture students have begun a counter-protest against the occupation of the Arts Tower by Free University of Sheffield.
The counter-protest mainly consists of third year Architecture students who are angry that they're unable to access their resources and work space, although the occupiers claim it is university security services that are stopping students entering the building on health and safety ground.
The students are holding placards saying "Get out of our tower tossers" and "Don't kill our studio culture", as well as suggesting the occupation is only splitting the student body.
We reported yesterday that the students were meant to be showcasing their work, which they've spent three weeks on, to potential employers today and tomorrow, but they're unable to access the models they've created and are unable to access their study space.
Architecture students were also distressed that personal belongings had been left in the study space, with one student's house keys locked inside the building.
One student, Jack, also explained their deadlines can't be changed as architecture studies relies on external deadlines set by an outside exam board, and that despite trying to remain on good terms, occupiers have now stopped replying to messages and will no longer speak to the students.
The Architecture students, who are in full support of the UCU strikes, feel that occupying the Arts Tower was a "step too far". They also pointed out the Arts Tower is home to many of the support staff, who aren't striking, and that it's not targeting the right people.
The students have been receiving support from the wider student community as well, with people coming and thanking them for protesting on their way into Western Bank library.
However, the occupiers insist that the students can still access their work, but it's the Security Services who aren't letting people in, due to fire exits being blocked.
Architecture students dismissed these reports, and said that even though they could go and collect their work, they wouldn't be allowed to stay and use the vital study space.