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Our history

We're a modern university with a long and proud history, dating from the opening of two 19th century schools which would later become the foundations for Sheffield Polytechnic.

Collegiate Campus City Campus
1836 – Sheffield Collegiate School opened
1885 – Grammar School moved in
1903 – merged with Wesley College
1905 – became City of Sheffield Training College
1966 – renamed Sheffield City College of Education
1976 – absorbed by Sheffield Polytechnic
1843 – Sheffield School of Design opened (Glossop Road)
1855 – expanded onto Arundel Street, shortly followed by a purpose-built School of Art
1950 – Sheffield College of Technology built (Pond Street)
1969 – merged with Sheffield College of Art and Design (as it was then known) to form Sheffield Polytechnic

Our campuses have seen two World Wars – Collegiate Crescent was used as a military hospital from 1915–19, and when Collegiate Hall and the main building on Arundel Street were bombed during the Sheffield Blitz (1940), students rallied round to help wherever possible.

After World War Two, major educational reforms including the

  • Education Act (1944), which increased demand for university places as more funding was available and more people were qualifying to enter higher education
  • new Council for National Academic Awards (1963), allowing other institutions to award qualifications across a range of subjects
  • invitation and submission of local education authority plans (1966–7) for college mergers

led to the designation of three polytechnics – a new type of higher education institution – in 1969.

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