Current protest activity on campus


Thank you for your interest in Universally Manchester Festival. We look forward to welcoming you to our campus from 6-9 June.

You may be aware of some protest activity currently taking place on our campus, so here is some information about it and what we’ve been doing to make sure you can still enjoy your day with us.


Since 1 May, an encampment has been in place within our campus (on Brunswick Park) with several occupants protesting at the conflict in Israel and Gaza. This follows other such events on campuses in the UK.

The violence and loss of life that has affected innocent people in Israel and Gaza is truly heart-breaking, including those affected in the education sector. We are aware of and share the deep distress and concern that this terrible situation continues to cause across our community. We recognise and respect that many views exist about the causes and potential solutions.

Free speech and respect on campus

Universities are a place to debate contentious subjects and where people can disagree well about many topics. That is one of the key reasons we exist – to explore these subjects and ideas and debate them respectfully. This includes listening to some people’s views that can be deeply offensive to others. As a society we see that on a variety of topics and none more so recently than over the deeply distressing events in Israel and Gaza.

It is incredibly important that people can exercise free speech within the law.

That said, it is also essential that people treat each other respectfully. We will not tolerate racism, antisemitism, islamophobia, discrimination, harassment, abuse, or criminality. These have no place in our community.

You can read more about our response to the protests, online.

Safety on campus

Our campus remains a safe environment and open to all. Since the start of the protest activity, staff and students have continued to work and study across campus safely. We recognise however that some forms of protest or free speech may cause offence or distress to others. There will be many visible staff – including Campus Support and Security colleagues – present across the days of the festival, who you can speak to.

If you have any concerns:

  • Speak directly to one of our festival colleagues (in rainbow lanyards) at our information point
  • Report incidents through the University’s online Report and Support portal (which can be done anonymously, if you wish)

We hope you enjoy Universally Manchester Festival and look forward to seeing you.

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