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Staff Memories - Sheila Ferguson

My attention was drawn to the University of Warwick some time before my husband started applying for employment there. I was listening to a Radio 4 broadcast – it could have been the Today programme, at breakfast one morning and Jack Butterworth’s voice came booming over the airways discussing the pros and cons of having a ‘mixed sex’ Hall of Residence. It must have been an impressive broadcast because all these years later (37 at least) I still remember it.

My husband joined the University staff on 1st April 1973 and we joined him in August of that year. I regularly drove into Leamington to shop and it was quite usual to find students along the Kenilworth Road hoping to hitch a ride to the campus in Coventry. I occasionally offered a ride, and on this particular occasion asked the young man who sat in my car if he was enjoying his time at the University. He said he was finding it quite interesting but “being on campus was bit like being in a prisoner of war camp!!”

I cannot now remember whether this was before or after J.G. Ballard had written Empire of the Sun in which he describes his Japanese Internment Camp as being “like the campus of Warwick University”.

Sheila Ferguson
Audio Visual Centre 1978-1989