Nottingham Trent University, School of Art and Design

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Founded in 1843, the School of Art & Design at Nottingham Trent University is one of the oldest in the United Kingdom.


Nottingham School of Art on Waverley Street.

In 1836 the Government Select Committee on Art and Manufactures produced a report highlighting concerns about the standard of design in the industry. Higher standards abroad forced manufacturers to buy or copy foreign designs. The Board of Trade established schools of design:


The original school at the People's Hall in Beck Lane (now Heathcote Street), moved to Plumptre House in Stoney Street in 1852 and to Commerce Square, off High Pavement in 1858. In 1863, a site was purchased in Waverley Street for the building of a new school.

Building work started on 23 May 1863 but the foundation stone wasn’t laid until 22 October that year when Henry Pelham-Clinton, 5th Duke of Newcastle was available for the ceremony.[1] The school was opened by Henry Pelham-Clinton, 6th Duke of Newcastle on 19 June 1865. The architect was Frederick Bakewell. In front of the building is a statue of the artist Richard Parkes Bonnington, produced by Watson Fothergill.

Current status[edit]

In art and design, the School was ranked in the top three universities overall in the country by the Higher Education Statistics Agency in 2006-2007 for the number of students who successfully gained course-related placements.[vague]

NTU was ranked in 2006-07 as being in the top three universities in England and Wales for its graduate employability record; 97% of graduates find related employment of further study within six months of finishing their course.[2]


Nottingham Trent University's City site is based close to the heart of Nottingham city centre, its facilities, transport links and student accommodation are supported by the many local shops, bars and amenities nearby. Nottingham also consistently ranks among the top ten UK cities as an excellent shopping and nightlife destination.[3]

The School of Art and Design is based at the University's City site (in Nottingham city centre) and is serviced directly by the Nottingham's tram network, Nottingham Express Transit.[4]

Art and design facilities[edit]

All of NTU's art and design courses are based on the University's City site, a few minutes' walk from NTU's main student facilities and Nottingham's city centre.

Bonington building — a purpose-built centre for creativity,[vague] upgraded in 2005.

  • Modern art and design studios, workshops, ceramics and glass kilns
  • Photographic studios and in-house printing bureau
  • Fashion studios, electronic garment and knitwear technology
  • Digital textile printing, digital loom and embroidery equipment
  • Laser cutting technology
  • Computer suites, CAD systems, image and sound editing studios
  • Exhibition galleries
  • Art and design shop
  • Café and social spaces

Waverley building — a restored, listed building with design heritage.

The Waverley building was home to the first Nottingham School of Art and Design in 1843. In recognition of its importance, the University has upgraded[when?] all facilities within Waverley as part of an ongoing regeneration plan.

  • Gallery and exhibition foyer
  • Working studio theatre
  • Design workshops and studios
  • Wardrobe department including dye and production facilities
  • Audio and video suites with editing facilities
  • Integrated Windows and Mac IT suites

Maudslay building — a centre for industry and technology.

The Maudslay building has recently been[when?] upgraded to incorporate real-life, industry-standard design facilities and modern working studio environments.

  • Product and furniture workshops; wood synthetics and metal fabrication facilities
  • Design studios and working display areas
  • IT learning unit, with computer-aided design (CAD) suite
  • 'Rapid prototyping' modellers: machines creating a 3D solid object from a virtual computer model
  • Waterjet cutter: latest generation technology to cut and shape solid materials, such as glass, steel, granite and marble using a precision waterjet that travels at twice the speed of sound
  • CNC (computer-numerical control) router and brand new laser cutter
  • Location of designated placement office support unit for all courses
  • The Hive: business incubator unit for NTU students[2]


Courses are offered at undergraduate levels (BA Hons in numerous disciplines) and also MAs in a wide range of subjects.

There is an MA by "registered project or thesis" offered as a flexible postgraduate course, allowing students to tailor their course specifically around their areas of individual interest.[citation needed]

At the postgraduate level of research degrees, all of the institution's research groups were rated as nationally or internationally excellent in the Research Assessment Exercise of 2001.[citation needed]

Industrial links[edit]

In the field of art and design, NTU has links with a wide range of companies, professional bodies and institutions on an international level, including Apple, Arcadia Group, Broadway, Fashion Institute of Technology, Marks & Spencer, Ralsey Group Limited, Association of Illustrators, Sony, and Sophie Steller.[5]

International students[edit]

The University has international liaison staff, course tutors and trained counsellors to give international students advice and practical help, and also offers a detailed orientation programme the week before term begins.[citation needed] University representatives regularly travel to international education fairs to give advice and information to overseas applicants.[citation needed]

International exchanges[edit]

NTU has links across Europe, the United States, Japan, Korea, China, Australia, India, Africa, and the Far East, both through individual contacts and exchange programmes.[citation needed]

Many of NTU's undergraduate courses offers the opportunity to spend time studying at a university overseas. Students can do this in Europe through the Socrates-Erasmus Programme, as well as in an even larger range of countries worldwide through the University's study abroad scheme.[citation needed]

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ "Nottingham School of Art". Nottinghamshire Guardian. England. 30 October 1863. Retrieved 23 March 2018 – via British Newspaper Archive. (Subscription required (help)). 
  2. ^ a b Nottingham Trent University, School of Art and Design, Undergraduate School Book 2008/09
  3. ^ The Independent, 2006.
  4. ^ Nottingham Express Transit (NET).
  5. ^ "Industry links - Art & Design - Nottingham Trent University". Nottingham Trent University. 
  6. ^ "Dan Hardy UFC Bio". Retrieved 2014.  Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)

Coordinates: 52°57′33″N 1°09′23″W / 52.9593°N 1.1565°W / 52.9593; -1.1565