Hall seniors at Wilson House have been left questioning the future of their traditionally guaranteed accommodation.
As reported last week, it emerged that Wilson House had been removed from Imperial’s accommodation website for prospective students ahead of a refurbishment next academic year, with new Waterloo-based hall ‘Xenia’ being posted in its stead. Hall Seniors hired by Wilson House last term have now been informed that they may not be guaranteed accommodation, even elsewhere.
Students at Wilson House have exhibited their frustration with the ongoing situation. One Wilson student involved closely in hall life, who wished to anonymous, commented on the lack of communication there has been from the College on the issue.
“There had been hints for a long time about Wilson’s refurbishment, but the impression given [by College] was that any hired seniors while not being able to stay in Wilson next year, would definitely be required elsewhere.”
“There has been no clear guidance from College, and it has negatively impacted on the Seniors.”
The capacity of accommodation for next year’s intake across Imperial accommodation has also been taken into question. College are actively seeking 65 extra bed spaces externally in order to guarantee the required number of spaces for first year students, with wardens across Imperial being discouraged from recruiting more Hall Seniors until the situation is resolved.
The Wilson House-based student continued: “Students shouldn’t be the ones inconvenienced - especially if they have to unexpectedly search for accommodation during exam time. Some individuals have had to cancel their plans to live with groups of friends in private accommodation to take on thisopportunity. It seems that the College is happy to leave people hanging.”
The student was also keen to stress the fact that Hall Seniors now have to pay for their accommodation like any other hall-based resident, and so do not take on the role “for any financial gain.”
Not only Wilson House has been removed from the list available to prospective students on the Imperial website. Orient House, based in Fulham, has also been removed.
When speaking to Felix in February, Graduate Students’ Association PresidentRobert Tang said that en-suite rooms at Orient House would be offered to postgraduates for the next academic year “at around £199 [per week]” should postgraduate accommodation Clayponds Village close.
The accommodation website currently continues to lists one of its ‘Hot Topics’ as ‘Current Clayponds Village Warden Vacancy’, however following this link only leads to the College’s main announcements page with the post relevant of the period August 2011.
This news arrives following several upheavals in Imperial student accommodation. Fisher Hall on Evelyn Gardens has also been earmarked for closure after a planning permission request late last year from College demonstrated the intent to shift the use of the building from student accommodation to elderly care.