Kingston University has announced that Kingston Bridge House (KBH) will not be offered as halls of residence for students applying for the next academic year.
The University intends to sell the accommodation, located just outside of Kingston in Hampton Wick, and want to focus future investment on existing halls.
A statement from the University said: “Kingston Bridge House requires major investment to bring it to the standard we expect for our students.
“It is the only Kingston University halls of residence not in the Royal Borough of Kingston and is not, therefore, the right location to prioritise significant investment.”
The University informed students of their plans for closure via MyKingston on January 27, but many KBH residents said they are happy with the accommodation provided.
Students would recommend the halls
First-year product and furniture design student Sanne Ronner lives in a refurbished flat at KBH and had positive comments on her experience.
She said: “Maintenance is always ready to help, security is friendly, and the location is perfect for me.
“I’m considering staying for next year too. I’d definitely recommend it to others.”
The common room and 16 of the 40 flats were refurbished in summer 2015, the cost of which has not been disclosed by the University.
KBH has proven to be financially troublesome for Kingston University in recent years due to its unpopularity.
In March 2018, The River reported that empty rooms in KBH would prove expensive for the University, with costs potentially exceeding £500,000 for that year.
Erasmus business student Fanny Lahire said: “The location is great, and it isn’t that expensive for Kingston housing prices.”
She also appreciated that the accommodation was good value for money as it is a spacious room.
Not as active
Takudzwa Dirikwe, a first-year pharmacy student, said she was happy with the opportunities she had to meet people but wished KBH had a more active prominence in university life.
She said: “This hall of residence isn’t the most active compared to other accommodations.”
Social events are not often held at KBH and Middle Mill, with halls connectors favouring hosting events at Kingston Hill, Clayhill and Seething Wells instead.
Kingston University said that it is committed to “providing excellent facilities” in its other halls’ locations, such as 75 Penrhyn Road which opened in January 2018 next to the Penrhyn Road campus.
This is emphasised by the refocused investment going towards expanding the Seething Wells halls of residence and Kingston Hill instead.