Fighting fund banner


Breakthrough at Hugh Baird College as UCU members set to walk out at 13 colleges

28 January 2019

Governors at Merseyside college to consider deal for pay and annual leave entitlement increases

UCU members at 13 English colleges* will be taking two days' strike action in a row over pay. 

The two-day strikes are part of a second wave of action after UCU members at six colleges took action in November. The dispute centres on the failure of college bosses to make a decent pay offer to staff who have seen the value of their pay decline by 25% over the last decade.

UCU members at 16 colleges were due to walk out, but strikes have been suspended at Hugh Baird College following an eleventh hour deal that includes a pay rise of between 3% and 6% over two years and an extra five days' annual leave. The strikes have also been suspended at New College Swindon and Coventry College to allow for further talks.

The union said if colleges wanted to avoid disruption, they needed to follow the lead of the likes of Hugh Baird College, and Capital City College Group, which recently agreed a 5% pay deal for its 1,700 staff.

The pay gap between teachers in colleges and schools currently stands at £7,000 and around two-thirds of college heads have said pay is a major obstacle in attracting staff.

UCU head of policy Matt Waddup said: 'If colleges want to avoid further disruption then they need to come back to the negotiating table with serious deals. Hugh Baird College and Capital City College Group have shown what can be achieved when colleges work with us.

'Colleges that give nothing when they could work with us to tackle poor pay and conditions should expect to reap what they sow. We hope the deals that have been sorted and this latest wave of action will focus the minds of those in charge at the colleges that are refusing to put their staff first.'

*Abingdon and Witney College
Bath College
Bradford College
Bridgwater and Taunton College
City of Wolverhampton College
Croydon College
East Sussex College
Harlow College
Kendal College
Lambeth College
Leicester College
West Thames College

^ In order to maximise the impact of their action, Leicester College UCU members will be taking action on Tuesday 29 and Thursday 31 January. UCU members at Kendal College will be taking action on Wednesday 30 January and Tuesday 12 February.


Last updated: 15 June 2022