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Our changing campuses

Our changing campuses

Some things at our campuses never change – the stunning parkland scenery of University Park, the unique environment of Jubilee and the tranquillity of Sutton Bonington, the exotic yet familiar surroundings of China and Malaysia.

But we're also a University that's evolving and adapting, leading the way with developments across our sites to provide innovative research and outstanding student facilities for the 21st century. This month, we're taking a look at the changing face of our campuses – and the iconic buildings that keep Nottingham's identity alive.   


Moving towards the future... 

David Ross Sports Village entranceDavid Ross Sports Village 

One of the most exciting recent developments at University Park is our new David Ross Sports Village (DRSV). Replacing the original sports centre, which opened in 1970, the DRSV boasts world-class facilities including a 12m climbing wall, 200-station fitness suite, martial arts dojo, all-glass exhibition squash court, and an indoor sports hall which can accommodate 20 badminton courts. It's a long way from the old aircraft hangar that formed the original sports hall! 

Archive and modern images of the Sports HallOriginal sports hall                                            DRSV sports hall 

Our new George Green library is another development to open this year at University Park. Significantly expanding the library facilities and offering new spaces for individual and group study, the new building has transformed George Green from a dated resource to a modern library. 

George Green library old and new comparisonOriginal George Green library                            New George Green library 

One of the largest transformations taking place at University Park is the redevelopment of our Portland Building. While the outside of one of our most iconic buildings will retain its character, the interior is set to be revitalised.

 The Studio and Mooch terrace at the Portland BuildingPortland Studio                                                  Mooch terrace

Work has already started – this year we've seen the opening of The Studio, a flexible activity space reutilising the area that once housed the Den (or Ark or Buttery, depending on your era!), and an outdoor terrace at student bar Mooch. But the biggest changes are yet to come. Over the next year new cafes, shops, student welcome reception and landscaping on Portland Hill – incorporating terracing, water features and a sky canopy – will transform the building and give this much-loved facility a new lease of life. 

Jubilee Campus aerial shots from 1999 and 20171999                                                               2017

Over at Jubilee, the developments since the site first opened in 1999 have transformed the campus. Replacing industrial buildings and factories, the creation of Innovation Park has expanded the eastern wing of the campus, while new developments to the south – such as the new Advanced Manufacturing Building under construction – will take the boundaries of the campus through to Derby Road. 

The spirit of pioneering innovation pervades each of the developments at Jubilee – with the newest additions promoting leading research in chemistry at the GlaxoSmithKline Carbon Neutral Laboratory of Sustainable Chemistry, and business and entrepreneurship at our Ingenuity Centre. 

Ingenuity Centre and GSK laboratoryIngenuity Centre                                              GlaxoSmithKline Carbon Neutral Laboratory

Meanwhile at Sutton Bonington, new student amenities building The Barn has taken pride of place at the heart of the campus, offering expanded facilities including a dining hall, common room and graduate centre, set over three floors. Additional works underway at Sutton Bonington include an extension to the Dairy Centre and redevelopment of the North Lab facilities.


The Barn at Sutton BoningtonThe Barn

And it's not just in the UK that changes are underway. Our China and Malaysia campuses continue to grow from strength to strength. 

Malaysia Campus before and afterMalaysia Campus in 2004                                 The campus today

From open wasteland in 2004 to the stunning campus in Semenyih today, our Malaysia site has developed its own unique identity, while reflecting the attributes that make our UK campuses special. Recent developments include a new student accommodation village and the Tuanku Zara Teaching Centre, in honour of alumna HRH Tuanku Zara Salim.

Over the past ten years, our China site has also been transformed, growing from a cluster of buildings around the central pavilion to a vibrant and bustling campus. Emphasising environmental sustainability, the campus features lush planting, rivers and lakes, while the signature Centre for Sustainable Energy Technologies was the first zero-carbon building in China. 

China campus old and new comparison2006                                                             2012


...while keeping our heritage alive

But while our campuses are changing, Nottingham's heritage is a key part of our identity – it makes us who we are. Many of our buildings have changed little – and the landscape and environments that have long inspired Nottingham students are just as important today. 

Florence Boot hall old and new comparisonFlorence Boot hall 1948                                            Florence Boot hall today

Whether you graduated five or 50 years, our halls of residence will still be recognisable to you. The surroundings of students living and studying in halls today echo those of Nottingham students through the generations. 

Hugh Stewart hall old and new comparisonHugh Stewart hall 1930s                                 Hugh Stewart hall today

And the iconic buildings at the heart of our campuses retain the same character as when they were first built. 

Sutton Bonington Main Building old and new comparisonSutton Bonington Main Building 1940s                    Sutton Bonington Main Building today

Since the 1940s, the Main Building at Sutton Bonington has changed little. And of course, the Trent Building holds the same charm as ever. Replicated across our China and Malaysia campuses, our most famous building is carrying the Nottingham identity across our sites in the UK and internationally as we look to the future of our institution.  

Trent BuildingTrent Building and Highfields Lake today

There's more to see...


Take a more in-depth view at what our campuses look like today with our new virtual tour. Over the coming weeks, we'll also be showing you more snapshots and insights into campus life on our social media channels. What do you want to see? Tell us on Facebook and Twitter – and if you have any footage of our campuses over the years that you want to share, send it to us on social media or email