Monday 27 January 2020

44 Hallam Street, Marylebone, London W1W 6JJ

"100 Percent Compliance" in Residential Privately-Owned or Commercial Student Accommodation - How is it Going

A half-day seminar held on Chatham House rules looking at how institutions are undertaking their fire safety reviews for students living in private sector accommodation and sharing experiences,  processes, problems and outcomes.

The day involves some key personnel from the University and private sectors and the regulatory authorities.

Almost full

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9.20am - 9.40amRegistration (Tea and coffee available)

9.40am - 10.00amRound Table Introduction of Delegates and Aims of the Day Martin Blakey, Chief Executive, Unipol Student Homes (Who will also Chair the seminar)

10.00am - 10.30amThe Implications of the Secretary of State's Letter and Subsequent Guidance for HEIs John Plumridge, Director of Estates & Facilities, Birmingham City University

 • process and likely outcome
• a review of the AUDE Note for Members

10.30am - 10.45amQuestions and discussion

10.45am - 11.45amPanel Discussion: How Institutions are Reacting and What they are Doing - Three Case Studies

 Sheffield Hallam University - Jordan Meates, Lead for Accommodation Services
University of London - Andy Howarth, Head of Residential Accommodation
Liverpool John Moores University - Ed Naylor, Student Accommodation Manager

11.45am - 11.55amBreak (Tea and coffee available)

11.55am - 12.10pmThe ANUK/Unipol National Code and How Verifications Work Martin Blakey, Chief Executive, Unipol Student Homes

12.10pm - 12.40pmPanel Discussion: How Private Sector Providers are Reacting and What are they Doing 

 • Nick Hayes, Group Property Director at Unite Students
• Laurence Raeburn-Smith, Senior Policy Officer  at British Property Federation
• Matthew Kendall, Health, Safety & Facilities Manager - North at CRM Students

12.40pm - 1.00pmConcluding discussion and Freedom of Information Implications

1.00pm - 1.45pmLunch (Provided)


The Department for Education are attending and the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government have been invited.


On 17th November 2019 the Secretary of State for Education asked all Vice Chancellors to undertake a review to ensure adherence to building regulations and fire safety. The review included not only University owned buildings but owners of private sector accommodation. A similar request was made by HEFCE following the Grenfell tragedy but this review is wider than just the institution’s own properties and covers all PBSA, whether or not there is an institutional allocations link.

This seminar is concentrating on how institutions are approaching the task of reviewing the safety of private sector buildings:

• how they are identifying those buildings?
• what they are asking for?
• how they are evaluating that information?
• considerations around stay put or evacuation policies
• what happens if the information is unsatisfactory?
• whether their review will have a conclusion

The seminar will also look at:

• how the private sector is responding?
• whether this puts educational institutions in the frame as a regulator?
• what Freedom of Information implications there are once HEIs have the information and have reached their conclusions?
• the difficulties of auditing and verifying building regulatory compliance - experiences from the ANUK/Unipol National Code

The day will take the form of a number of short presentations followed by discussion on:

• the recent AUDE (Association of University Directors of Estates) Note for Members
• the difficulties of undertaking due diligence and what happens when deficiencies are found
• three case studies from different types of Universities as to how they have approached and developed their reviews
• three case studies from private sector providers and student accommodation managers

One aim of the seminar will be explore better on-going communications between the private sector and educational institutions on health and safety in the context of the need to work closer on supply and mental health and wellbeing issues.

This will be an opportunity for a maximum of 30 delegates to discuss concerns, issues and approaches in a confidential and supportive environment that will put the practicalities of maximising student safety at its heart.

Cost per delegate

Normal Delegate Rate - £175

Friends of Unipol Rate - £150

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