Minimal disruption at Warsash during Higher Education strike

Warsash Maritime Academy was unaffected in the national Higher Education strike today (October 31).

The academy, which is part of Southampton Solent University and based in Newtown Road in Warsash,  had minimal disruption today while pickets and rallies were taking place across the country.

Fiona Harvey (right) and Miles Grindey (back right) are taking part in the University of Southampton strike over pay concerns

Fiona Harvey (right) and Miles Grindey (back right) are taking part in the University of Southampton strike over pay concerns

A spokesperson for Southampton Solent University said they had anticipated “minimal disruption” to the teaching timetable at the whole university and that students were to be informed in the usual way via text messages and e-mails of any cancellations to their schedule.

The spokesperson added: “So far we are experiencing virtually negligible impact with no more than one per cent of university staff apparently taking strike action.”

The library and resource centres were opened as usual. Any students affected were advised to use these facilities for self-directed learning.

A one-day walkout by lecturers and support staff has been organised as they say their pay has failed to keep up with rising living costs.

Joint action was being taken by the University and College Union, Unison and Unite, which have rejected a pay offer of one per cent because they say it represents a 13 per cent pay cut in real terms since 2009.

Staff at the University of Southampton, who live in the Western Wards, are striking today and joining in a rally at the Southampton Guildhall at 1pm.

Fiona Harvey, who works as an academic support staff member at the university and lives in Park Gate, said: “We wanted to negotiate with them.

“It’s not just about lecturers and academics. It’s about the cleaning staff and security staff and everything to do with enhancing the students’ experience at university.

“It’s not that we wanted to strike, we have to do this to make a point to the administration that we want to have fair pay for everybody.

“It’s not congruent to an environment to make people happy.

“It’s a brilliant university. It’s not the university staff, it’s the way they’re dealing with the pay.

“The students have come out with us as well. The University of Southampton Student’s Union are on strike too.”

Her son Miles Grindey, 18, who is studying at Itchen College, is supporting his mother and her colleagues. He said the pay issues could affect student life at the university.

He added: “The reason why I’m here is not because my mother needs better pay but because all the staff need better pay.”


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