Collecting StrandUniversity Archive Collections
TitleRemembering Battersea Oral History Project
Extent73 oral history interviews
Name of CreatorUniversity of Surrey
DescriptionOral history project funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and led by the University of Surrey Alumni and Development Department to capture the memories of former students who attended the University's predecessor bodies, Battersea Polytechnic and Battersea College of Technology.

The recordings cover Battersea Polytechnic in the 1940s, through to the 1950s when it became a College of Advanced Technology and then the change to a University into the 1960s and the building of the campus in Guildford.

In the interviews, the alumni respond to questions covering a range of student experiences including: social events, social life, student accommodation, sports competitions, student societies, the Students' Union, World War Two, political changes, course content, work placements, and memorable lecturers.

The following standard terms have been used in the catalogue descriptions in order to make searching more efficient and provide meaning for more unusual terms.

- Battersea College - includes: Battersea Polytechnic Institute, Battersea College of Advanced Technology
- Battersea Main Building - original building of Battersea Polytechnic Institute, on Battersea Park Road

- Courland Grove Hall of Residence

- Dances - Staged social performance events at Battersea College and other higher education institutions in London. Includes: gigs, hops, concerts
- Degree - Higher education qualification, usually at undergraduate level. Includes: Educational qualification
- Diploma in Technology - Historical vocational qualification similar in value to an undergraduate bachelor's degree. Includes: Dip Tech - Doctoral Degree - Highest level of academic qualification in the United Kingdom. Includes: Doctorate, PhD

- Edwin Tate Library

- Falcon Road Annexe -Former furniture warehouse, which contained the Biological and Health Studies department, the Linguistic and Regional Studies Department and Spectroscopy, Chemical Physics, as well as the Computing Unit and the Biochemistry Unit.

- Great Hall - Large hall within Battersea Main Building. Includes: Battersea Main Hall

- Halls of Residence - Student accommodation on or near university or college campus and provided by the educational institution
- Head of the Lake - Annual student competition using boats on Battersea Park Lake.
- Holidays - Weeks between academic semesters/terms and years, usually over the summer, during Christmas and over Easter. Includes: vacation, leave
- Hotel and Catering Course - Overarching term for several courses available at Battersea College throughout its history providing training in domestic and commercial catering and hospitality skills. Includes: Hospitality, Domestic Science, Hotel and Institutional Management
- Hotel and Catering Restaurant - Training restaurant run and staffed by Hotel and Catering Management students and staff

- Industrial Placement - A period spent in observation, training or employment by a student within a commercial company employed in a trade associated with that student's academic studies. Includes: Year in industry, work experience, apprenticeship, traineeship
- International Evening - Annual social performance event organised by students to showcase different cultures of countries represented by international students at Battersea College

- Masters Degree- Postgraduate qualification, requiring equivalent of two years of study to complete. Includes: MA, MPhil, MSc

- Ordinary National Certificate - Higher education academic qualification equivalent to modern A-levels

- Public House - Social meeting place with a licence to serve alcoholic drinks, other beverages, and often food. Includes: pub, inn

- Ralph West Hall of Residence
- Refectory, The - Catering facility provided by Battersea College to provide meals for students, especially those dwelling in halls of residence. Includes: canteen, cafeteria, dining room, dinner hall
- Rented accommodation - Rooms or buildings privately rented as student accommodation. Includes: digs

- Sandwich Course - Describes vocational academic courses involving long term placements within industry both before and after the time spent at college. Students on these courses were often sponsored by the employer they were on placement with. Sometimes described as 'thin' or 'fat' according to the distribution of time between studying and working.

- Usk Road Annexe - Formerly St John's School, it housed the Metallurgy Department, and the Crystallography and Spectroscopy Sections.

Names have been transcribed phonetically in both the transcriptions and the catalogue records. Where spellings are obviously incorrect (eg Leggit instead of Leggett) , these have been silently corrected in the catalogue entry though not in the transcription. Where the phonetic transcription might be incorrect the suggested correction is given in square brackets after the phonetic transcription.
ArrangementOral history interviews have been catalogued in alphabetical order by surname.
Related MaterialSee also the following, held by the University of Surrey:
Records of Battersea Polytechnic and Battersea College of Advanced Technology, catalogued in the Battersea Polytechnic catalogue, archive ref BA, and the University Archives catalogue, archive ref UA.
Records of the University of Surrey, catalogued in the University of Surrey catalogue, archive ref US, and the University Archives catalogue, archive ref UA.
Material given to the archives by former staff and students is held in the University of Surrey and Battersea Polytechnic alumni collections, archive ref ASD.
Records of the University of Surrey Students' Union, archive ref SU.
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