SE6250 : Derwent and Langwith E & F blocks

near to Heslington, York, Great Britain

Derwent and Langwith E & F blocks
Derwent and Langwith E & F blocks
These 4 blocks of accommodation; E & F blocks for Derwent and Langwith; are usually collectivly referred to as 'Derwith'. This accommodation is much more modern than the other blocks in the two colleges, the rest dating from the opening of the University of York in 1962. These blocks sit opposite Derwent (right) and Chemistry (behind). Beyond the blocks is Heslington Church.
University of York
Founded in 1963 as one of seven new build universities in the 1960s. Initially comprising a main campus (now known as Heslington West) and King's Manor in the city centre, a new campus is under construction and is known as Heslington East. These two main campuses exist to the south-east of York surrounding the village of Heslington, and the city is about a 20 minute walk away. The university has a collegiate system LinkExternal link with seven undergraduate and one post graduate colleges and all members of the university are assigned to a college. For more information see the university website LinkExternal link
Heslington West
The original Heslington campus at the University of York is now referred to as Heslington West to differentiate it from the more recent Heslington East campus. Construction began on this campus in 1964, building on the grounds of Heslington Hall. The Hall still remains housing various administrative arms of the university. The west campus is built around a large artificial lake with Central Hall in the middle of the campus. As well as students, the university is home to large numbers of waterfowl, especially geese and ducks as well as several black swans. Running through the north of the campus is University Road, with Chemistry, Alcuin College, the library and a few other buildings to the north of it. On the south west Heslington Lane runs from Heslington to Fulford splitting Halifax college and 22 acres sports fields from the rest of the campus.
Colleges at the University of York
The University of York was built with a collegial system in a similar way to Cambridge, Oxford and Durham. At York, the colleges are principally for accommodation and social reasons rather than for academic teaching (although the colleges are commonly used for splitting teaching into smaller groups within departments). The first college was Derwent College (named after the nearby river) in 1965, quickly followed by Langwith College (named after the nearby common) and in 1968-9 by Vanbrugh College (after John Vanbrugh the architect), Goodricke College (after John Goodricke the astronomer) and Alcuin College (after Alcuin of York). Wentworth College (after Thomas Wentworth), the post graduate only college, was formed in 1972 and completed the originally envisaged colleges. In 1990 James college (after Lord James of Rusholme) was added, initially post-graduate only, it allowed undergraduate entry from 1993. Halifax College only came into being as a college in 2001, although the buildings had existed as overflow accommodation (known as Halifax Court) for several years previous. With university expansion onto Heslington East campus several colleges are departing from their original locations with Goodricke College relocating in 2009 and Langwith College in 2012. The buildings on Heslington West vacated by the departing colleges were acquired by other neighbouring colleges (where other shared descriptions for the specific colleges exist, these reflect the college at the time of the photograph). A ninth college was added to the university in 2014, named Constantine College after the Roman Emperor Constantine the Great was constructed on Heslington East.
Derwent College
The first of the colleges to be built at the University of York, the college was opened by the Queen in 1965. Derwent is situated at the head of the lake on Heslington West campus next to Heslington Hall. The college originally consisted of three CLASP accommodation blocks (A, B and C) although D was quickly added later. The nucleus comprised the bar and porters' lodge along with several academic departments (Philosophy and Politics) and originally guest accommodation, but this has since been converted to additional office space. Derwent later gained additional accommodation in Eden's Court, situated across Heslington Lane close to the present-day Halifax College. Consisting of eight houses (typically around 10 rooms in each) along with two cottages (Eden and Sycamore). In the late 1990s Derwent expanded across University Road and built on part of the existing car park and garaging located next to Heslington Church fields. Derwent got two of the four accommodation blocks (becoming E & F). The other two blocks were given to Langwith College resulting in the four blocks being commonly referred to as Derwith.
Following the departure of Langwith College to Heslington East, all the former Langwith buildings were reallocated to Derwent College. Langwith E & F blocks (part of 'Derwith') became G and H blocks, with the Langwith A, B, C & D blocks becoming J, K, M & P blocks. The former Langwith College nucleus became Derwent L Block (with a nod to its former life, and conveniently removing any need to relabel the rooms), and resulting in the college now having two bars and dining halls.
Langwith College
Named after the nearby stray (in SE6548), Langwith was the second college at the University of York, opening the same day as Derwent College. Langwith College was based on the Heslington West campus from 1965-2009 comprising of four accommodation blocks (A, B, C & D) and the nucleus with its bar, dining hall (later named Hendrix Hall after Jimmy Hendrix) and academic departments (English and Education). These blocks were situated alongside the lake between Derwent and Vanbrugh. In the late 1990s Langwith gained two additional accommodation blocks (Langwith E & F blocks) of the four constructed to the north of University Road next to Heslington Church fields. These blocks become known as Derwith (as the remaining two blocks belonged to Derwent College). In 2012 Langwith left its former college buildings (which were handed over to Derwent college) and moved to a set of new college buildings on Heslington East, as part of Phase 2 of the campus expansion. This new college consists of 4 courts, named Sydney Smith (Chair of University Council from 1990 to 2001), Philip Brockbank (after the original Provost), Gordon & Francesca Horsfield and John West Taylor (Secretary to the Academic Development Committee of York Civic Trust, which supported the founding of the university) plus the Langwith Nucleus comprising the bar and college administration buildings. On Heslington East, Langwith sits between Goodricke College (to the west) and Constantine College (to the east).
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SE6250, 701 images   (more nearby )
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Date Taken
Tuesday, 27 September, 2005   (more nearby)
Tuesday, 27 October, 2009
Geographical Context
Educational sites 
Place (from Tags)
York  Heslington  University of York 
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Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SE 626 505 [100m precision]
WGS84: 53:56.8521N 1:2.7796W
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OSGB36: geotagged! SE 626 505
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East-southeast (about 112 degrees)
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Heslington West  College  University  Derwent  Langwith  Derwith 

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