Estates and Buildings, De Montfort University and Predecessors

Scope and Content

Papers relating to the management of estates and buildings at De Montfort University and its predecessors. Including administrative papers, correspondence, reports, building plans, photographs and newspaper articles.

Administrative / Biographical History

These papers refer to general estates management and the construction and administration of specific buildings both at De Montfort University's main campus in central Leicester and at other campus sites it has occupied over the years. More detailed information about each campus or building can be found in the administrative history for that section.

Summary of significant events relating to DMU's campuses:

  • 1870: Leicester School of Art opens in a warehouse on Pocklington's Walk
  • 1888: Leicester Technical School starts classes in the Ellis Wing of Wyggeston Hospital School
  • 1897: The Leicester Municipal Technical and Art School was constructed on The Newarke. This is now the east wing of the Hawthorn Building facing Hugh Aston
  • 1909: South wing of Hawthorn Building constructed along Richmond Street
  • 1928: West wing of Hawthorn Building constructed along Asylum Street (now The Gateway)
  • 1937: North wing of Hawthorn Building completed, revealing the ruins of the Church of the Annunciation
  • 1946: The Colleges expand into the Lero Buildings on Painter Street
  • 1947: Expansion into Downings Buildings in Newarke Street
  • 1953: Colleges purchase Boulevard Buildings on Western Boulevard
  • 1967: Work begins converting I&R Morley factory for education purposes (now Clephan). The Leicestershire Regiment drill hall and militia housing are demolished
  • 1966: Fletcher Building opened by The Queen Mother
  • 1969: Phase I of the James Went Building is completed and opened
  • 1970: Classes begin in refurbished Clephan Building. William Rowlett Hall, first student Hall of Residence, opened
  • 1972: Lawrence Kershaw Hall of Residence opened
  • 1974: The Polytechnic begin leasing office space in Bosworth House. The Boulevard Gymnasium is renamed The JF Sandford Sports Centre
  • 1975: Eric Wood Building constructed as administrative offices
  • 1976: Scraptoft Campus gained on merger of City of Leicester College of Education with Leicester Polytechnic. Former Stibbe Factory acquired and named Mill Lane Building
  • 1977: Kimberlin Library constructed
  • 1979: Elfed Thomas Building on Oxford Street acquired
  • 1990: The Polytechnic begins leasing office space in Gateway House
  • 1991: The Polytechnic acquires the Portland Shoe Factory and associated Chantry Building
  • 1992: DMU Milton Keynes opened at the Kents Hill Campus
  • 1993: Queens Building is constructed and opened by The Queen
  • 1994: Trinity Hospital buildings bought by DMU. DMU Lincoln opened across 4 campuses: City, Caythorpe, Riseholme and Holbeach. DMU Bedford opened at Polhill and Lansdowne Campuses
  • 1995: The Innovation Centre opens. Charles Frears Campus gained on merger with Charles Frears School of Nursing. New Wharf Hall of Residence opened
  • 1997: Kimberlin Library is extended. Crown Building adjacent to Elfed Thomas Building is acquired
  • 1998: Bede Island building opened, with Bede Hall of Residence
  • 2001: Lincoln Campus is transferred to the University of Lincolnshire and Humberside to enable the creation of the University of Lincoln
  • 2003: Mill Lane Building is converted into the Campus Centre. DMU Milton Keynes Campus and the Scraptoft Campus sold.
  • 2004: James Went demolished
  • 2006: DMU acquire Gateway House outright and begin major refurbishment. DMU Bedford sold to become part of the new University of Bedfordshire
  • 2007: PACE Building opens. Baker textiles factory acquired and converted into John Whitehead Building
  • 2009: DMU take over former Gateway School for Boys buildings, now the Philip Tasker Building, the Art Factory and Mill Studios
  • 2010: Hugh Aston Building opened on the site of James Went, Magazine Square re-landscaped
  • 2011: Charles Frears Campus closed and sold. Bosworth House refurbishment completed and building reopened as Edith Murphy House. Elfed Thomas Building and Crown Building closed
  • 2012: The Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Leisure Centre opened on Western Boulevard
  • 2013: Wellesley House leased and Heritage House purchased to accommodate courses during the refurbishment of the Fletcher Building
  • 2015: John Sandford Sports Centre refurbishment completed and opened as The Venue@DMU
  • 2016: Opening of Vijay Patel Building for art and design teaching (formerly Fletcher Building). Refurbishment of Leicester Castle as Business School


The collection has been arranged into sub-fonds as follows:

  • D/037/01: General Estates Records
  • D/037/02: Central Leicester Campus
  • D/037/03: Milton Keynes Campus
  • D/037/04: Bedford Campus
  • D/037/05: Scraptoft Campus, Leicester

Access Information

Open and available for general access.

Archivist's Note

Catalogued by Katharine Short, Archivist, and Natalie Hayton, Archives Assistant, June 2017.

Conditions Governing Use

Copies can be taken for private research purposes only, and subject to the condition of the document.

Appraisal Information

Duplicate material has been removed.


Additions to this collection are expected.