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Lancaster University halls have been declared the best in Britain following the results of the 2014 National Student Housing Survey awards. For the fifth year in a row the university has received the prestigious accolade after first achieving it in 2010. The awards held on Tuesday July 22 also saw the University receive the award for Best Value For Money, as well as retaining its International Accommodation Quality Mark.
The awards were given to the University following the annual survey, which measures the satisfaction of students towards their university or college accommodation. After analysing 19,000 student responses from 200 institutions, Lancaster’s halls and value were both perceived to be the nation’s finest.
In addition to the titles of Best University Halls and Best Value For Money, the University was also awarded the International Accommodation Quality Mark for its positive responses from international students. The University retained the award for the fourth consecutive year after the overseas students polled gave the accommodation an average satisfaction rating of over 90%.
Lancaster University accommodation has received commendation largely due to the large extent of refurbishment and regeneration across it. Nevertheless, the Lancaster accommodation has received some scrutiny from students despite the positive results in the student survey. University accommodation rents have risen at a greater rate than inflation. In 2010 a standard room with basin cost £74.60, but had risen to £92 a week by 2012. Refurbishments across these rooms over the period explain the rise in rent prices, yet rents are still rising and the room which cost £92 in 2012 will cost £100 at the start of Michaelmas term 2014, despite few of these rooms and their flats seeing refurbishment.
Although many rooms have become more expensive despite no change, refurbishment has been plentiful across university accommodation over the last few years. The beginning of lent term saw the regenerated Bowland Tower unveiled to the student population. As well as the Tower, the East and West Wings around Alexandra Square were renovated for accommodation, providing Bowland with 76 new standard rooms.