Notices

Contents of this section:

[Note. An asterisk denotes a reference to a previously published or recurrent entry.]

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UNIVERSITY PREACHERS

Trinity Term 1997

Thursday, 24 April, at 8 a.m. Holy Communion (Latin). At St Mary's.

Sunday, 27 April, at 10 a.m. THE RT. REVD AND RT HON. THE LORD RUNCIE, Honorary Fellow of Brasenose College, Honorary Fellow of Merton College, sometime Archbishop of Canterbury. (St Mark's Day Sermon.) At Magdalen College.

Sunday, 4 May, at 10 a.m. JOANNA TROLLOPE, novelist. At St Mary's.

Sunday, 11 May, at 10 a.m. DR SHEILA CASSIDY. At St Mary's.

*Whit Sunday, 18 May, at 10 a.m. THE REVD DR HENRY CHADWICK, KBE, FBA, Honorary Student of Christ Church, sometime Dean of Christ Church, sometime Regius Professor of Divinity. At the Cathedral.

*Trinity Sunday, 25 May, at 10 a.m. THE RT. REVD DR MICHAEL NAZIR-ALI, Bishop of Rochester. At All Souls College.

Sunday, 1 June, at 10 a.m. THE REVD ANTHONY MEREDITH, SJ, Lecturer in Heythrop College, University of London, sometime Tutor at Campion Hall. At St Mary's.

Sunday, 8 June, at 10 a.m. DR JANE SHAW, Fellow of Regent's Park College. At St Mary's.

Sunday, 15 June, at 10 a.m. THE RT. REVD JAMES JONES, Bishop of Hull. At St Mary's.

*Commemoration Sunday, 22 June, at 10 a.m. THE RT. REVD DR GEOFFREY ROWELL, Bishop of Basingstoke, Emeritus Fellow of Keble College. At St Mary's.

Sunday, 29 June, at 10 a.m. DR PAULA CLIFFORD, Lecturer in French at Magdalen and Somerville Colleges. (St John Baptist's Day Sermon.) At Magdalen College.

*On these days Doctors will wear their robes.

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ORATION BY THE SENIOR PROCTOR

SENIOR PROCTOR: Insignissime Vice-Cancellarie, licetne anglice loqui?

VICE-CHANCELLOR: Licet.

SENIOR PROCTOR:

What is a proctor? When David Copperfield put that question to his friend Steerforth, Steerforth replied: `Why, he is ... a functionary whose existence, in the natural course of things, would have terminated about two hundred years ago.' Of course that was not a university proctor, but a legal official in London. Yet even at Oxford, where outsiders suspect that all sorts of activities go on that ought to have terminated two hundred years ago, and where it is at least true that antique job-titles persist more than in many other places, that of proctor is often seen as particularly obscure. I can understand that colleagues at the Sorbonne may be unaware of the existence of the Liber procuratorum nationis anglicanae (alemanniae, picardiae, gallicanae, etc.) in universitate parisiensi in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, but the level of knowledge is scarcely more impressive here: the eyes of colleagues glaze over as they ask: `Now what exactly does your job entail?'

Several different replies are possible, and I shall begin with an oblique one. In some ways, the Proctors and Assessor may be thought to resemble Government Ministers, perhaps Ministers without portfolio. The Assessor, however, does have an identifiable portfolio, for student welfare. The original intention, when the post was created in 1960, was to provide representation on Council and other central bodies for the women's colleges, graduate colleges and new societies, but the Franks Report in 1966 suggested that the full integration of those bodies into the mainstream of university life logically entailed the abolition of the post of Assessor. Instead, I am happy to say, it was redefined with a new orientation. The Assessor now chairs a number of important committees, namely the Access Funds Committee of Council, the Committee on Student Hardship, and the Clubs Committee, and sits ex officio on the Equal Opportunities Committee of Council and the General Board, and on the Committee on Student Health. The outgoing Assessor has worked tirelessly on these and many other matters, and in particular has done much to raise awareness among both Junior and Senior Members of the real financial hardship experienced by some 10 per cent of the student body, and of the various actual and potential means of alleviating that hardship, which affects not just individuals but the whole academic community, for instance by delaying thesis completion rates among fourth-year graduates.

If the Assessor has a portfolio for student welfare, and the Senior and Junior Proctor are more like Ministers without portfolio, would it not be appropriate to see them as a triumvirate, and indeed to call them all Proctors? Hebdomadal Council has taken an important step in that direction, but it has clearly not been willing to go the whole way. The step has been to recognize that it is no longer justifiable to define the post of Assessor as a part-time one. The last few Assessors have put in at least as many hours as the Proctors, and it was demonstrably unfair to expect them to carry on giving undergraduate tutorials and possibly lectures as well. The Assessor's stipend has also been increased, from one- half to two-thirds of that of the Proctors. That makes a point about work-load, but also about responsibility. There is indeed a significant overlap between the responsibilities of the Assessor on the one hand and the Proctors on the other, but there are also major differences. The Assessor has no responsibility for examinations or for student discipline: if there is an unseemly episode, it is not the Assessor who gets a telephone call from the Vice-Chancellor. On the other hand, the Assessor's role in administering hardship and other funds carries with it an important financial responsibility which is in practice much greater than that of the Proctors, whatever delusions of grandeur the Senior Proctor may have when attending finance committees or signing the University payroll. When people ask me what the job consists of, I generally mention five main areas: Committees, Examinations, Discipline, Ceremonial, and Ombudsman-like work. It is the first of these, in particular, that accounts for the similarity between the schedules of the Assessor and the Proctors. Each of us sits on more than fifty committees: Hebdomadal Council, the General Board, many of the sub- committees of each of those bodies, including the wonderfully-named Standing Committee on Standing Committees, and a whole range of Boards of Curators, Delegates, Trustees, Visitors and other committees, some meeting frequently, others rarely. We are privileged to obtain wide experience of the University's administration and take part in decision-making. We may not have much expertise, or at least not initially, but we have read our papers and listened, we have become familiar with the essential jargon of RAWP (the Resource Allocation Working Party), rafts, ratchets and ring-fencing, of footprints and spines and overheads, and we have gradually been able to participate more actively in discussion, always being listened to with courtesy and attention. One aspect of our role on committees is that of `tribunes of the people', asking the questions and making the points that occur to an ordinary CUF or University Lecturer. The `tribune of the people' argument was explicitly used to justify the decision to make the Senior Proctor one of the five members of a new Committee to Review the Salaries of Senior University Officers. In return, there is an obvious benefit to the whole community, namely that we are then able to disseminate a certain understanding of `the system' in our colleges, to student representatives, and more generally. If Coopers and Lybrand, and the Commission of Inquiry, have been minded to recommend little change to the role of the Proctors and Assessor in the governance of the University, it must be because they recognize these practical points. They may also have noticed that former Proctors and Assessors provide a pool of people with interest and experience who may at a future date be prepared to serve on committees or fill other responsible positions in the University or in public life. Proctors pop up in the most unexpected places. I happened to be reading the entry in Who's Who of the Chief Executive of the Higher Education Funding Council for England the other day, and found to my consternation that he had been Senior Proctor in 1975—6.

I should like to move straight to the fifth area mentioned above, which I have called `Ombudsman-like work'—and I note in passing that it was my pleasure, at the Lord Mayor's Christmas Reception, to meet my predecessor but thirty, Sir David Yardley, until recently the Local Administration Ombudsman. This area too is something that is at least partly shared by the Proctors and the Assessor. The new Proctors' and Assessor's Memorandum—the change in title from Proctors' Memorandum is significant—announces in its Introduction: `The Proctors and Assessor are available if students wish to consult them in confidence for help, information, or advice about University matters or any other matters outside the sphere of their college advisers.' That happens not infrequently, but it is not only Junior Members who consult us or our experienced staff. Conversely, we ourselves consult widely, both formally and informally. Under the general heading of `Ombudsman- like work' I would include the constant probing, encouraging, and oiling of wheels that goes on, and in which all three of us are involved. It may arise out of a discussion in a committee, or a query from a colleague, or personal experience, or a sense of opportunity or disquiet, but whatever the origin, the Proctors and the Assessor are well placed to ask questions and get things moving. Another name for it is `networking'. In this connection, I should like to thank you, Sir, for making time to see us on Tuesday mornings during term, when we could raise with you any matters that had come to our attention and that we thought should be aired with you. That kind of ready access is invaluable, and we have greatly appreciated it.

The remaining three areas of examinations, discipline and ceremonial duties are traditionally the business of the Proctors alone, and not of the Assessor. Yet it has seemed appropriate for the Assessor, who alone of the three sits on the Advisory Committee of Council on Degrees by Diploma and Encaenia Honorary Degrees, to play an official part at Encaenia and at conferments of Degrees by Diploma, and there may be other ceremonial occasions, such as University Sermons, where the presence of the Assessor in an official if voluntary capacity would not be inappropriate. It is arguable, too, that there is a certain overlap between the Assessor's concern for the well-being of Clubs and the Proctors' responsibility for their formal regulation. This year, for instance, the Assessor and I have scrutinized the affairs of several Clubs whose operation has given cause for concern, and in more than one case we have taken action which could properly be called disciplinary.

Ceremonial duties, discipline and examinations nevertheless remain largely the concern of the Proctors. In relation to the first of these, we have enjoyed pretending to be native Latin-speakers at degree ceremonies and at the termly Latin Communion, which has seen a revival of the ancient custom by which a Proctor served as Assistant Celebrant; we have attended University Sermons and witnessed the handing over of the gloves after the Court Sermon; we have attended the Chancellor and various distinguished guests; we have enjoyed the extraordinary combination of full-blown British pageantry and quiet African dignity in the garden of Buckingham Palace; we have sworn in a Bedel, several Pro-Vice-Chancellors, two Clerks to the Market, and the new Director of University Library Services and Bodley's Librarian; and on these and other occasions we have admired the sure handling of all ceremonial matters by the Vice-Chancellor's Secretary and the University Marshal in their different but complementary spheres, and the confidence-inspiring reliability of the Verger and the Bedels.

The Proctors' and Assessor's Memorandum, this year transformed in content, style and livery, points out that `the Proctors no longer prowl the streets of Oxford after dark to make sure that students are wearing their academic gowns and keeping out of ale- houses', and explains their role in enforcing student discipline in terms of `ensuring that regulations designed to maintain the orderly working of the University are implemented'. That implies partnership with student representatives at least as much as punitive intervention, and we have appreciated our regular meetings with the Executive of the Student Union and with the Presidents of Junior and Middle Common Rooms and College Student Unions, out of which have come some constructive ideas for working together. It also implies partnership with college deans, with whom we also have a valuable termly meeting, and with the Thames Valley Police. Over the past two years the Proctors have also been heavily involved in the deliberations of the Committee to Review Disciplinary Procedures which has now presented both its main report and a supplementary report to Council. Several important recommendations are still under discussion by the Conference of Colleges, but the idea of partnership has been a key one here too, in the form of `congruent action' by University and College authorities.

It has been necessary to investigate possible breaches of regulations, and in some cases to proceed to a Court. Computer misuse has again been of particular concern this year. The Proctors' Court has no statutory existence as such, and the arrival of the Clerk has even deprived it of its permanent court-room, but it offers a practical and simple way for the Proctors to discharge their statutory duty to `investigate complaints ... ensure that the statutes, customs and privileges of the University are observed' (Tit. IX.vi.3.5, Statutes, 1995, p. 68) and `enforce and prevent breaches' of statutes and regulations (Tit. XIII.10, p. 97). In Trinity Term, in particular, these Courts can take an inordinate amount of time, and it may be necessary to call on Pro-Proctors in future to spread the load. We have greatly appreciated the willingness of our splendidly professional Pro-Proctors to assist us outside the Examination Schools and to represent us on a wide range of other occasions: we hope that the prospect of some limited court duty in addition would not be too daunting.

Complaints may of course relate to matters other than breaches of regulations, and we have investigated a fair number. Although the Proctors are not fully independent in the Nolan sense, i.e. external to the University, Oxford has always valued their independence in such investigations, and that message has recently been reiterated by Council in its response to the interim report of a CVCP working party to consider some of the recommendations in the Second Report of the Nolan Committee. I am pleased to report that in one area, that of postgraduate degrees, there has been a decrease in the number of complaints this year. I hope this is a trend that will continue. It may be that the constant process of clarifying what is expected from candidates and examiners—this year again the wording of the various documents has been modified in the light of experience—is paying off. I hope that the new timetable proposed by the Graduate Studies Committee of the General Board for confirmation of status nine terms after admission as a graduate student, rather than six terms after transfer to D.Phil. status as at present, together with a new recommended point of compulsory self- assessment six terms after admission, will be a further help in avoiding problems in the final stages of thesis preparation.

Other examination matters are largely the concern of the Junior Proctor, who has dealt with everything with great enthusiasm, efficiency and tact, ably supported by Linda Mason, now redesignated Assistant Clerk to the Proctors, and by the new Clerk of the Schools and her staff. They have sorted out innumerable queries and problems, and have kept sometimes wayward Chairmen of Examiners in order. The marking conventions for all First and Second Public Examinations are currently being scrutinized in the hope of being able to achieve better Quality Assurance. The precise meaning of the term Enhancement, mysteriously coupled with Quality Assurance in TQA documentation, is unclear, but perhaps it could be applied, inter alia, to the various research projects that are seeking a better understanding of why women achieve less good degree results in some subjects than they might be expected to, with the aim of developing the fairest possible examination system.

When we took up office a year ago, Coopers and Lybrand had not yet reported on the governance of the University; the possibility of a large benefaction for the Management School was a dark secret known only to a few; the results of the RAE were a long way off; and many retired members of Congregation were blissfully unaware that they had lost their voting rights. Some of these are still live issues, others have already begun to slide back into obscurity. Sometimes the developments of more lasting significance are those that do not make the headlines. I think in particular of two initiatives attributable to our immediate predecessors, the Examinations Policy Committee, which has now settled into a pattern of termly meetings, and a plea for strategic academic planning, which has borne fruit in the new standing orders of the Planning and Development Committee of the General Board, and also in a new Planning and Resources Sub-Committee of the Resources Committee, charged among other things with establishing the academic priorities of the University over the next decade or so. Together with the Master of Balliol's Working Party on Sites, which has come up with a medium-to-long-term strategy for the geographical development of the University, these bodies provide welcome evidence of a shift away from essentially reactive attitudes towards something more proactive. There have been calls for the University to take an independent line on courses, fees, and funding more generally, instead of meekly accepting whatever the Funding Council and the research councils decide. We shall await with interest the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry on those and other subjects. At the very least we shall need to find more money for bursaries and graduate studentships, as the flow of externally- funded grants and studentships slows to a trickle.

Not everything is changing, of course. I was interested to read the following entry in a diary kept by the Senior Proctor in 1945–6: `In the afternoon a tiresome meeting of the Joint Advisory Science Committee: The Science Professors seem to suffer from a delusion that there is a conspiracy by the University, and by Council ... in particular, to ill-use them and to keep them in the dark about everything. Perhaps this delusion would not be so strong were they not dissatisfied with the proposed increase in their salaries.'

Until seven years ago Proctors regularly complained about having to attend meetings of Congregation for which there was no business. That requirement was then abolished, and in some years there were no meetings of Congregation at all, or rather none at which a division was taken. I must confess that I had never attended a debate in Congregation until last Hilary Term. This year there have been several occasions on which important issues have been discussed, and most members must have become aware of the value and power of Congregation. There was even a certain excitement in counting and announcing the votes, not least when it was a question of seeing if the magic figure of 75 votes in favour of a resolution would be achieved, so making a postal vote mandatory if Council wished to maintain its opposition. Yet the debates were largely formal, in that the interventions were almost all written in advance, and there was little if any genuine dialogue. It has been suggested that the Cambridge system of Discussions might usefully be tried here, and I hope some thought will be given to that.

Among the changes that have taken place in the University in the past year, one stands out, and that is the abolition of the Curators of the Bodleian Library after 383 years, having been established on the death of Sir Thomas Bodley in 1613. The Proctors and Assessor were privileged to take part regularly in the meetings of the Curators and the Standing Committee until the last, and then to undertake a final Visitation of Duke Humfrey: in the event more of a perlustration, whereas our distant predecessors would personally check the volumes on the shelves each year. Reading through the two leather-bound handlists stamped `Pro. Sen.' for `Procurator Senior', and dated 1614, I came across an addition in another hand, made therefore somewhat later in the century: under `Libri Artium', after Strabo, Spinosa and Stobaeus, appeared the entry `Shak-speare'. It had no doubt been a difficult decision, whether to spend scarce money on the works of a lightweight modern author, and a playwright at that, rather than those of a good solid philosopher, theologian or ancient writer. Of course this First Folio was disposed of by the Bodleian as soon as the improved second edition came out in 1632, and was only reacquired at great expense this century. Not that the books were in much danger of being disturbed by readers in earlier times: as late as 1831 an average of only four readers a day used the Bodleian [BC 89(107), p. 7]. Now there are huge numbers of readers, increasingly from outside Oxford, and equally huge numbers of visitors, for the management of whom a scheme was approved by Council in January, for submission to the National Lottery Heritage Fund. A survey of visitors in the immediate vicinity of the Bodleian undertaken by the consultants for the scheme found that 47 per cent knew no facts at all about the Bodleian. Perhaps the version of the University motto displayed above the north door of the Divinity School, looking down on the area in which future parties of visitors will be corralled awaiting admission, could, as a contribution to the University's mission statement, be adapted to read: Dominus illuminatio eorum: May the Lord enlighten them!

Every Proctor and Assessor will have his or her favourite committees. Among mine have been the Estates Committee, which has not only been on progress to the farms up on the Welsh marches, but has been pursuing an active and successful trading policy, with several site visits during the year, resulting in a steady improvement of the urban property portfolio; the Delegates of the University Press and its Finance Committee, to which come regular reports of enormous successes right across the world and of scarcely less enormous challenges and problems faced and overcome, all on a scale hitherto quite alien to a CUF Lecturer in an Arts Faculty (the Press was no doubt prudent to add to its portfolio of journals during the year a new title Disasters, to complement the existing Survival); and the Curators of the Botanic Gardens and the Parks. The last-named were heavily involved in the negotiations over the possible need to make alternative provision of sports facilities for the Mansfield Road Club, as was the Committee for Sport, on which I have also served. I am very glad to say that the vote in Congregation did not signal the end of the University's interest in the matter of sports facilities. Earlier this month Council took the decision to launch a wide-ranging review of the provision of facilities for University sport for all students and staff, and with several major developments already in the pipeline, I am sure that sport at Oxford will soon be flourishing even more than at present.

Mr Vice-Chancellor, not the least pleasure of being a Proctor or Assessor is the sheer variety and unpredictability of the job, despite all those committees. The legal expertise of the Junior Proctor has been frequently called upon, to our collective benefit and relief. He and the Assessor have been splendidly stalwart and companionable colleagues at all times. They have taken everything in their stride, including the acquisition of a wife in one case, and of a daughter in the other. There is no time to pay tribute to all the many other conscientious, hard-working, patient and thoroughly excellent people with whom it has been our privilege to rub shoulders. If it should occur to you, Sir, or to the Higher Education Quality Council, to wonder how the staff of the University at all levels score so highly on all these counts, perhaps I can let you into a secret. One day I turned my computer on, and before it ran a virus check, I saw the words flash briefly on to the screen: `Checking Integrity ... 66 per cent ... 80 per cent ... ` etc. The Clerk to the Proctors has been everything that one could wish a chef de cabinet to be. I would also like to say a special word of thanks to the University Marshal, who has been a pillar of strength, and has done his best to keep us all up to his very high standards; and to all the staff of the Proctors' Office, including the University Police. Now I knew that there had been a certain amount of turnover in the ranks of the Police, but I was taken aback to read the following note in the Minutes of the Delegacy for Military Instruction: `BULLDOG LIFE EXPECTANCY. With the increased flying duties of the Bulldogs their life expectancies will be reduced. A replacement is being sought.' I trust, Sir, that neither you nor our successors will stand for that, and will insist on an ample supply of Bulldogs, who are defined in the Shorter OED as `the Proctor's [sic] attendants'. Seriously, we do rely heavily on our Constables and Special Constables, and we appreciate the cheerful way in which they have coped this year with the new patrol system.

The Report of the Hart Committee in 1969 recommended that the election of Proctors should take place a full year before they assumed office, rather than three months as had previously been the case, so that the Proctors-elect could act as Pro-Proctors during that run-in period, rather on the Cambridge model. While we have enjoyed our year to the full, and while we have arranged several induction sessions for our successors, we are glad that Hart's suggestion has never been pursued: two years in harness would be excessive. Whether it is none the less beneficial to have a whole year to prepare oneself for Proctorship or Assessorship is debatable. It does mean, though, that as of last week we know not only who our immediate successors are, but who their successors will be. We wish them as pleasant, interesting and varied a time in office as it has been our privilege to enjoy. I began with David Copperfield; let me end with The Pickwick Papers, and take for myself and my colleagues Mr Pickwick's words in the final chapter of that work, when he announces the dissolution of the Club after two eventful years: `... numerous scenes of which I had no previous conception have dawned upon me—I hope to the enlargement of my mind, and the improvement of my understanding. If I have done but little good, I trust I have done less harm, and that none of my adventures will be other than a source of amusing and pleasant recollection to me in the decline of life. God bless you all!'

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Proctorial Year 1996–7: Summary of Offences

Breach of Examination Regulations (conduct after examinations)

84 cases

Fine 56 @ £30
Fine 3 @ £25
Fine 3 @ £50
Fine 1 @ £15
Fine 6 @ £45
Fine 3 @ £40
Fine 4 @ £20
Fine 2 @ £35
Case dismissed 5
Guilty—no penalty imposed 1

Breach of University Regulations (obstruction)

4 cases

Fine 3 @ £30
Fine 1 @ £40

Breach of University Regulations (fly-posting)

1 case, not proven

Harassment

4 cases

Fine 1 @ £50
Not guilty 2
Case in Progress 1 (Junior Member opted for case to be heard by Disciplinary Court)

Breach of Examination Regulations (using unfair means)

8 cases

1—Case deferred for medical reasons
1—Examiners instructed to `fail' his examination
3—Not guilty
1—Examiners instructed to reduce degree classification
2—Charges dropped in view of candidate's decision to withdraw from University

Breach of University Regulations (non-bona fide use of University Computer System)

5 cases

Fine 1 @ £300
Fine 1 @ £60
Fine 1 @ £40
1—case in progress
1—referred to Disciplinary Court [Junior Member opted for case to be heard by Disciplinary Court but withdrew from University before the hearing (charges remain on file)]

Breach of University Regulations (removal/defacement of library books)

3 cases

Fine 1 @ £35
2 cases—1 total of £50 and allowed to use library only on restricted terms

Breach of University Regulations (Misrepresentation)

1 case in progress

Total number of cases: 110

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WELDON MEMORIAL PRIZE 1996

The Prize has been awarded to DR MARTIN A. NOWAK (DR.RER.NAT., MAG.RER.NAT. Vienna; UNIV.DOZ. Vienna), Wellcome Senior Research Fellow, Head of the Mathematical Biology Group in the Department of Zoology and Fellow of Keble College.

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ARNOLD ANCIENT HISTORICAL ESSAY PRIZE 1997

The Prize has been awarded jointly to SIMON GATES and EMILY MACKIL, both of St John's College.

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CHARLES OLDHAM SHAKESPEARE PRIZE 1997

The examiners have not awarded the prize this year but SAMUEL J. GILPIN, Christ Church, was honourably mentioned and has been awarded a prize from the Charles Oldham Fund.

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APPOINTMENTS BY THE VICE- CHANCELLOR AND PROCTORS

The Vice-Chancellor and Proctors, acting under Tit. II, Sect. ix, cl. 4 (d) (Statutes, 1995, p. 15), have made the following appointments from the first day of Trinity Term 1997:

As a member of the Buildings Committee

Until the first day of Michaelmas Term 1999 pE.W. GILL, MA, D.PHIL., Fellow of Worcester

As a member of the Oxford and Cambridge Examinations and Assessment Council

For three years pJ. LANGTON, MA, Fellow of St John's

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KEYS TO THE UNIVERSITY PARKS

The Curators of the University Parks give notice that the locks to the Parks will be changed in the week beginning 5 May 1997.

In Hilary Term 1996 the Explanatory Note to a decree amending that governing the Curators of the University Parks stated that the gates to the University Parks had locks which were of an obsolete pattern and which would shortly need to be replaced (Gazette, Vol. 126, 14 March 1996, p. 866). It also noted that, owing to the presence of the Marston--Oxford cycle track and footpath on the south side of the Parks, there was now a route between South Parks Road and Ferry Road, Marston, open twenty-four hours a day, except on 1 January and 25 December of each year. In these circumstances, the Curators of the Parks would no longer be issuing keys to the gates of the University Parks to members of the University. In reaching this decision, the curators had been influenced by a number of factors: (1) It was impossible to make the Parks' boundaries totally secure from illegal entry, and the curators did not have the resources to enable them to protect legitimate key-holders when the Parks closed. (2) It had been the habit of some key-holders to admit non-key-holders after the gates had been locked. This had led to those admitted being unable to get out without either climbing out (and, on occasion, causing damage while doing so) or calling out the Superintendent to open a gate. (3) Regrettably, some key-holders had removed padlocks from those gates to which fixed locks could not be fitted. This had been a continuing, costly problem. (4) Closure of the Parks to all persons after sunset would make the effective protection of buildings and equipment by the University Security Service more practicable.

The locks still need to be changed but the curators have now revised their proposal with regard to the issue of keys: a limited number of keys to the new locks will be available, on application, and on payment of a deposit of £100 and an annual fee of £10. The deposit will be refundable on return of the key, less any sums outstanding from the annual charge, which will be payable in advance. Application forms for keys are available from Mr C.E. Willis, University Offices, Wellington Square, Oxford OX1 2JD. Initial applications will be considered by the curators; if the number of applications received by 30 April exceeds the number of keys available, allocations will be made on the basis of need as reasonably determined by the curators. When all keys the curators have agreed to allow into circulation have been issued, no more keys will be issued until key-holders return their keys. Persons to whom the curators have issued keys (for the old locks) may return them for a refund of their deposit. The keys should be returned, with an indication of the approximate date of issue, to Mr Willis at the above address.

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TAYLOR INSTITUTION LIBRARY

Closure of Slavonic Section

The Curators of the Taylor Institution give notice that the Slavonic Section of the Taylor Institution Library at 47 Wellington Square will be closed on Thursday, 27 March.

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OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

Members of the University are asked to note that the Walton Street entrance is now closed to visitors, although members may continue to deliver packages to the Walton Street lodge at any time, including out of office hours and at weekends. The main entrance to the Press for visitors is now situated in Great Clarendon Street. People who prefer not to climb the steps may use the lift situated by the entrance to Oxuniprint: please telephone in advance for directions.

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Educational Technology Resources Centre

The Educational Technology Resources Centre will be operating a limited service for two weeks, from 24 March to 4 April. Anyone who requires any audio-visual or televisual services during this period is asked to contact the department before Wednesday, 19 March, to make arrangements.

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