A royal guest was welcomed to Manchester Metropolitan University as the Business School hosted the 25th anniversary conference of the Association of University Directors of Estates (AUDE).
Prince Andrew, the Duke of York, drew on his experience as the Chancellor of the University of Huddersfield to give a short speech to attendees yesterday.
The event was opened by Manchester Metropolitan University's Vice-Chancellor, Professor Malcolm Press, who delivered a keynote address to AUDE members about the University's strategy and the wider social and political context - as well as outlining six reasons to be confident about the future.
Showcasing the University
The Vice-Chancellor said afterwards: "We were delighted to welcome His Royal Highness, the Duke of York, to the University to address delegates at the 25th anniversary AUDE annual conference.
"The whole programme of the event provides us with an excellent opportunity to showcase the University's campus.
"Place and Sustainability are two of the University's five strategic themes and it is important to demonstrate our commitment to managing and developing the institution. We’re a large and diverse university with ambitious staff and students, so we need focused high-quality teaching and research in inspiring spaces."
As well as opening the conference with an expansive first talk, Professor Press joined a panel discussion with Dame Nancy Rothwell, President of the University of Manchester, and Sir Howard Bernstein, until last week the Chief Executive of Manchester City Council.
Discussing the importance of collaboration between institutions and local government, Sir Howard said: “In my opinion, no other city does collaboration between partners quite like Manchester.”
The conference consists of a number of plenary sessions, several interactive seminars, a trade fair in the Business School and a series of excursions and social events.
AUDE Chairman Mike Clark said: "We're delighted to run the AUDE annual conference which celebrates our 25th year.
"We'd also like to thank our fantastic hosts, Manchester Metropolitan University, for providing a spectacular location.
"We were honoured to receive the Duke of York who welcomed AUDE members to the conference and set the scene for the high calibre of talks that followed."
Broadcaster Simon Fanshawe, who hosts the three day conference, said: "It's the 25th anniversary of AUDE and it coincides with the transition to a modern university which has happened here.
"After hearing Malcolm speak, I would really like to be a student here. It sounds really exciting.
"There's access to the wonderful Carol Ann Duffy, which is exciting for the students who are here and is going to attract the students of the future.
"The buildings here are extraordinary and I want to go and explore the School of Art."
Manchester Metropolitan University is one of the most extensive higher education centres in Europe with 37,000 students and more than 1,000 undergraduate, postgraduate and professional courses. The University educates and trains large numbers of legal and business professionals, scientists, engineers, teachers, health workers and creative professionals.
Manchester Met has invested £350 million in its estate and facilities during a ten-year plan to create a truly world-class campus in the heart of Manchester and in Cheshire.
The University is in the top three nationally for environmental sustainability, in the top 3% of global universities as ranked by the Times Higher Education and has an 85% research impact rated world-leading and internationally excellent.
Added 2 days ago: Made in Translation: Exhibition and book launch A collaborative project with The Portico Library.
Added 16 days ago: Fashion students meet designer Sir Paul Smith An amazing opportunity for the Foundation Year students
Added 16 days ago: First Generation applications now open Scheme to help local pupils into and through university
Added 17 days ago: Silversmith design graduate makes Grand National trophy Shannon O'Neill's cup will be presented to owner of winning horse
Added 17 days ago: Sir Martin Narey joins Manchester Metropolitan as Visiting Professor Government adviser will shape policy evaluation and research
Follow @manmetuni on Twitter for the latest news from MMU.