Pounds 35m 'Shop Window' Puts Uni Centre Stage of UK's Creative Arts Teaching

Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales), November 30, 2007 | Go to article overview

Pounds 35m 'Shop Window' Puts Uni Centre Stage of UK's Creative Arts Teaching


Byline: By Abbie Wightwick Western Mail

A pounds 35m teaching centre for creative arts and cultural industries was officially opened in Cardiff yesterday, pushing the city's student population to more than 30,000.

The ATRiuM Cardiff School of Creative and Cultural Industries is Glamorgan University's new arts faculty. The five-storey 10,500sq ft city centre building has space for 2,000 students and 120 staff.

Professor Peter Robertson, head of faculty, said that as one of the UK's biggest arts and media training centres it had already sparked interest from prospective students across the UK and Ireland.

The first undergraduates moved in at the start of the academic year in September.

Actress Si--n Phillips and broadcaster Jamie Owen hosted the grand opening last night. It was accompanied by performances from harpist Catrin Finch and vocalists Elin Manahan and Daisy Blue. Daisy Blue was accompanied on piano by her father Mal Pope.

Students based at the ATRiuM, near the prison in Cardiff's city centre, can study subjects ranging from pop music to drama.

The state-of-the-art building with signature floor to ceiling windows and a three-storey spiral staircase includes a cinema, theatre and TV, radio, film and animation studios. There are also music and rehearsal studios plus computer suites.

Professor Robertson has led the building project since joining Glamorgan University two years ago.

He said, "The image it gives is so great. It is a shop window for what we do.

"We are getting applications from students in Ireland, London and Newcastle, from across the UK.

"The design of the building is all about integration. Before we were all spread over five different buildings in Treforest. This means students and staff can come together more easily and is a better preparation for life where editors, screen writers and designers would be walking past each other in the corridor at work.

"This is a massive environmental culture change for us. The building is state of the art. It does not look like a university building. It looks like the corporate headquarters of the BBC or Apple and that was intentional. …

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