By Sophie Gregory
Durham college accommodation costs for undergraduates will next year exceed £8,000 for the first time, with finalists returning to St Aidan’s College required to pay up to £8,119 for a room.
An email sent to all St Aidan’s students today outlined the price of living in college for finalists and non-finalists in the 2018/19 academic year. The costs stand at £7,420 for a fully catered single room without an ensuite, while ensuite rooms for finalists will cost £7,883.
The charge for a fully catered ensuite room with a double bed will be £8,119, despite student finance being lower for many students in their final year. This price sees college residence fees breaking the £8,000 threshold.
Non-finalists will be expected to pay £7,183 for a standard single bed room, £7,643 for a single room with double bed and £7,879 for a fully catered, ensuite, double bed room.
Luke Hollander, JCR President of St Aidan’s College, told Palatinate: “Not so long ago, during my undergraduate studies, students were shocked to see fees go above the £7,000 threshold, so to see it reach £8,000 in such a short space of time is very concerning.
“This will unfortunately have a big impact on colleges in terms of pricing out students from low and middle income backgrounds from living in, an issue which the University appears to be indifferent to.”
In a previous statement to Palatinate on college fee rises in general, the University’s Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Colleges and Student Experience), Owen Adams, said: “The cost of providing our College residences rises year on year and we have to review prices on an annual basis to ensure we can continue to provide a high standard of accommodation and services.
“In consultation with student representatives, the University has agreed that residence charges will increase by 3.5% for the 2018/19 academic year.
“All students have been informed of our decision and they have also been advised how to access financial support should they need it. We strive to offer good value for money to our students. We continue to invest in our colleges to offer an excellent student experience.”
More information on undergraduate college accommodation fees can be found here.
Photograph: Ruby-Rae Cotter