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Rochester pays homage to its famous author

He's Rochester's most famous resident, and this weekend author Charles Dickens is being remembered along with his famous characters and novels. The Dickens Festival attracts thousands of people each year. Andrea Thomas spoke to Medway Council's events manager Carl Madjitey and Steve Martin from the Rochester and Chatham Dickens Fellowship. Oh, and a rather risque group of enthusiasts!

Oxford to have first female Vice Chancellor in 800 years

Students and staff at Oxford University have hailed the nomination of its first female Vice-Chancellor as a momentous event in Oxford's history.

Professor Louise Richardson will become the first woman to hold the university's most senior office since records began 800 years ago.

The 56-year-old is currently the principal and vice-chancellor of St Andrews University in Scotland. Professor Richardson says she hopes her nomination would inspire current and potential female undergraduates.

Professor Richardson said of her nomination: ‘Oxford is one of the world’s great universities. I feel enormously privileged to be given the opportunity to lead this remarkable institution during an exciting time for higher education.

I am very much looking forward to working with talented, experienced, and dedicated colleagues to advance Oxford’s pre-eminent global position in research, scholarship, and teaching.’

Subject to the approval of Congregation, the University’s parliament, Professor Richardson will succeed the current Vice-Chancellor, Professor Andrew Hamilton, at the beginning of next year.

Louise Richardson is married with three children.


Posties in new move to combat rural crime

Postal staff will help tackle rural crime Credit: ITV Meridian

Postal staff in parts of rural Hampshire are trialling a scheme to help combat rural crime. Mail Watch involves hundreds of postal delivery staff reporting anything they see which is suspicious. They say it won't make them snoopers - or special constables - they are just doing what they can to help.

As well as reporting their concerns, postal staff will be asked to respond to direct pleas for information from officers - sent via text message. Royal Mail deny that workers are stepping in to make up for police cuts - or that the scheme might put postal workers at risk. Christine Alsford reports.

  1. London

Tapestry of Magna Carta's Wiki page goes on display

Artist Cornelia Parker with a section of the embroidery Credit: British Library

A 13m-long tapestry of Magna Carta's Wikipedia article is to be unveiled today at the British Library.

The tapestry, created by artist Cornelia Parker, has been stitched together by more 200 people, including Edward Snowden and Jarvis Cocker, to celebrate the Magna Carta's 800th anniversary.

Fiver-year-old academy relaunched in Bexhill

A new school in Sussex was opened to great fanfare only five years ago, with almost forty million pounds being spent on the project. Its theory was unique - teaching three lessons at once in a giant classroom.

Bexhill Academy soon, however, ran into trouble, with poor Oftsed reports. Now the Academy has been relaunched, with another six million pounds due to be spent.

The school's new sponsor is assuring worried parents that it will learn from mistakes of the past. Andy Dickenson reports.


Confused about who is saying what on education? You're not alone....

Each political party is offering something different on education at this election. But do voters know who wants to scrap tuition fees all together - and who wants to just fund degrees in Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths and Medicine? Christine Alsford finds out...

Interviewees include: students in Portsmouth, parents at the Footsteps playgroup in Hayling Island, education experts Professor Daniel Muijs (University of Southampton) and Neil Carberry, (Director of Education and Skills at the CBI) plus students from City College in Southampton.

  1. David Johns (@davidjohns_itv)

Kent Kids learn in London in capacity crisis.

For the first time, children in parts of Kent are being allocated school places in London, because there aren't enough places locally.

Kent County Council has sent letters to 53 pupils in Dartford saying there aren't enough places at any of their secondary school choices, and that the London Borough of Bexley is the nearest and best alternative.

David Johns reports, speaking to parents Sue Bull, Richard and Tracey Robertson, and Kent County Councillor Roger Gough.

Sir Anthony Seldon leaves Wellington for Buckingham

Sir Anthony has been at Wellington for nine years Credit: Wellington College

The distinguished headmaster of Berkshire's Wellington College, Sir Anthony Seldon, has been appointed Vice-Chancellor at the University of Buckingham.

Sir Anthony is a historian and one of the country's most respected education experts.

He'll take over in September.

Sir Anthony will take over in September Credit: University of Buckingham

“We are very pleased indeed at this announcement. Sir Anthony has transformed two large independent schools, Brighton College and Wellington College, and made each of them formidably strong institutions. He is also a distinguished academic in his own right, and pioneer in the fields of contemporary history, political science and positive psychology. We believe he has the mixture of leadership, innovation and academic track record to make the University of Buckingham one of Britain’s leading universities.”

– Lady Keswick, Chancellor

“I am delighted to be taking over at the University of Buckingham, which my father, Arthur Seldon CBE, helped to found 40 years ago. There are many exciting developments already in train at Buckingham, including the new medical school. I am looking forward to building on the excellent work of Professor Terence Kealey, and working with the outstanding staff to make it a truly pioneering academic institution.”

– Sir Anthony Seldon
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