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UCU concern over BNP manipulation of Bath University

4 May 2007 | last updated: 14 December 2015

UCU today voiced its concern that Bath University is being manipulated by the British National Party.

It has been discovered that Danny Lake, the student who invited Nick Griffin to speak at the university later this month, is the leader of the youth wing of the party.

Lake, who heads up and relaunched the Young BNP, invited Mr Griffin to speak at the university on Monday 14 May. The decision has already prompted strong criticism from Bath students and staff, and UCU today urged Bath University vice-chancellor, Glynis Breakwell, to review it.

UCU joint general secretary, Sally Hunt, said: 'Who was really behind the invite for Nick Griffin to speak at Bath University? It was Nick Griffin and it is a concern that the University is being used in this way. This was not an innocent politics student inviting him, but two senior BNP officials using Bath University to promote their own party.

'Universities are rightly held up as examples to the rest of society because of their diversity and tolerance, and the safe space that campus provides for people to work and study. The BNP has no interest in sharing those values and preaches only hate and fear.

'The damage to Bath's international standing will be substantial. This visit will cause distress to staff and students alike and will see a proud university used as a platform for the BNP's racist political agenda.

'The millions of staff and students who cherish academic freedom as a precious right still deplore the presence in an institution of learning of Nick Griffin and his hate-filled messages. UCU will be organising a protest if this visit does still go ahead, however I today urge Glynis Breakwell to review the decision and will be writing to her immediately to that effect.'