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A message from the Vice-Chancellor responding to the news about The Queen.

Posted on 8 September 2022

A message from our Vice-Chancellor for all our staff and students

In 1965, the Queen visited the University to meet with staff and students and to formally open our first two Colleges: Derwent and Langwith. Image credit: York Press

Dear all,

I am writing to you all to express sadness at the news of the death of The Queen.

Queen Elizabeth II was on the throne at the inception of the University in 1963, and as Sovereign signed the warrant for the University’s founding Royal Charter. In 1965, she visited the University to meet with staff and students and to formally open our first two Colleges: Derwent and Langwith. In subsequent years, she supported and championed the work of many of our staff and alumni by bestowing honours for the impact of their research and teaching, and their work in and for our community. 

We have not experienced the death of the monarch for nearly 70 years and many people will have known the Queen as the monarch for their whole lives. We know that there will be many different personal responses to this news, and that many will feel a deep sense of loss and sadness. 

Period of mourning

As a mark of respect, we will be participating in the official period of mourning and will follow any guidance provided by the Royal family and the UK Government. 

We have convened a coordinating group to consider how we proceed during that period, and we will be sharing more information and updates over the coming days. 

In the meantime, as initial guidance, we anticipate that University events, research, and teaching and learning will continue as normal during this period. The exception will be on the extraordinary national holiday announced for the day of the funeral, when we anticipate the University will operate under our normal bank holiday arrangements. 

During this period of mourning, we ask that our community - staff and students, alumni, visitors to campus, and attendees at any of our events - acknowledges the sense of loss that will be felt in the UK and beyond, and joins us in expressing condolences to members of the royal family and appreciation for the Queen’s service to the country. 

Yours sincerely,

Charlie Jeffery

President and Vice-Chancellor

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