July 2017

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A new Co-op supermarket is set to open on the University of Reading’s Whiteknights campus this Autumn.

The new store will replace the current Campus Central, which is next to the Palmer Quad – at the heart of campus. A full refurbishment of the shop will see Campus Central close for business from 5pm on Friday 21st July.

The brand new, modern fit-out will take approximately five to six weeks, with the store to open mid-September, ready for the new term. Work is due to start on Monday 31st July.

Students and staff across campus will benefit from a wider range of fresh produce, an in-store bakery, healthy foods, meal ideas, hot food and essentials. NUS extra card holders will receive a 10% discount on all goods. Customers that sign up to Co-op’s Membership rewards scheme, at a cost of £1, will receive a further 5% reward into their membership account when purchasing own-branded products and services, with an extra 1% of this going to local good causes, community groups and charities.

In addition, the new store will have extended opening hours, providing more convenience for customers.

Aisles in Campus Central store

Campus Central will be closing on 21 July, with the new Co-op emerging in its place by mid-September.

Gavin Brooks, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Teaching and Learning, said: “This is an exciting development for students and staff alike here at Whiteknights campus. Co-op is one of the UK’s biggest food retailers and can offer its customers a wide range of fresh, good quality produce.

“Strong ethical values and the discount schemes offered to NUS extra card holders and Co-op members make Co-op the right fit for our campus. It is important that the University partners with organisations that uphold the same values we do, and equally important that we consider the potential impact to the cost of living for our students.”

Campus Central is currently run by Reading University Students’ Union (RUSU), with all profits from the shop going towards services and opportunities offered by RUSU. The University has committed to ensuring that RUSU is not financially disadvantaged by the change of circumstances by providing an increased grant until 2021.

Current Campus Central permanent staff will become Co-op employees and the terms of their contracts remain the same. Student employment opportunities will be available.

A temporary store supplying a limited range of cold drinks, snacks and sandwiches will be run out of Monterey Lounge (inside the main RUSU building) while the fit-out is taking place.

A section of pedestrian pathway near the site of the Engineering Building will temporarily close from Monday 17 July 2017.

The foot pathway will be closed from the boiler house to the area adjacent to car park 12, next to the recently-demolished Engineering Building at Whiteknights campus.

Car park 13 (in front of the Harborne Building) and the road nearby will remain open, but the area will only be accessible to cars and other vehicles.

An alternative pedestrian route from the zebra crossings by the Pepper Lane entrance will be signposted.

An update on footpath access around the area will follow as early as possible.

The activity forms part of works for the creation of the University’s new Health & Life Sciences Building, which is due to be complete by summer 2019.

Refurbishment work in and around the Library building continues over the summer vacation.

One of the main tasks being carried out over the next few weeks is the demolition of “stair 2” – the staircase housed behind hoardings on the right-hand side of the building as you walk into the Library through the front entrance, adjacent to the male toilets, (south side of the building).

The demolition will be carried out in progressive phases, moving from top to bottom of the structure. Noise levels are likely to be high, depending on the works being carried out. The bulk of the noisiest demolition works are planned to be carried out before the start of the new academic term.

Study space across campus 

You can find details of study space across campus on the Library refurbishment project page: www.reading.ac.uk/library/refurb. This includes around 800 spaces available in the URS Building, and other campus rooms available for immediate use, which you can find through the Free Room Finder.

Keep checking the Library blog for the latest refurbishment news and updates.

Details of the Library facilities available in URS (including services, map and opening times) can be found on our dedicated Library@URS page.

All of the above can be easily accessed through our Library refurbishment project page: www.reading.ac.uk/library/refurb.

The stair case is being removed so that new, larger lifts can be installed.