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Hallam Illustration students launch petition over move to ‘isolated’ building

‘The space we work in is important’

Hallam students have launched a petition after learning they will be moved to a different building this academic year.

Second years studying Illustration and graphic design will now be taught at Aspect Court instead of the "bespoke" HPO Arts Building.

A group of students are set to meet with the department tomorrow (September 12th) to raise their concerns.

They claim that the move has come as a shock, students have not been consulted, and that they will be "isolated" from the rest of the arts community on campus.

The petition states that there had been no warning of the location change, and Illustration students were under the impression that they were spending the remainder of their studies in the Arts Building.

"When joining the university the group were sold the HPO bespoke arts building as a creative space that was unique and exciting; a place we could mix with older students and students on other creative courses.

"This is something that helps the course stand out from many others across the country. To now be told unexpectedly, after our first year, that we are to be moved to an office like space is extremely frustrating."

Students have also described the move from a designated creative space to an office space as "troubling", and the art department as "underhand".

One student told The Tab about their concerns over creatives being moved from a building which is especially for those people.

"People are going to feel isolated and the environment you're in does have an impact. There was no word of it last year either."

The current HPO Arts Building is described on the University website as "an exciting environment for our art and design staff and students and welcomes hundreds of students through its doors every day."

It was the centre of a £9 million regeneration project before opening its doors in 2016 as a "new home which houses art and design courses."

Large studio spaces and specialist workshops are among the features of the building that are advertised.

A Sheffield Hallam University spokesperson said: "Graphic design and Illustration is a very popular course and the Faculty has created additional purpose-designed, bespoke spaces for staff and students on this course.

“Staff in the Faculty are due to meet with the student cohort to show them their new facilities and answer any questions they may have.”