Birmingham Newman University Prepares for Historic Accommodation Block Demolition 

28/05/2024 by Newman Staff

Birmingham Newman University is preparing for the demolition of one of its oldest and most storied accommodation blocks, Edgbaston Halls. This block dates back to the construction of Newman College in 1966. The move marks a significant step in the University’s Estates masterplan, which aims to modernise facilities and enhance the student experience. 

Over the past few weeks, the university has undertaken extensive preparations to ensure the process is both environmentally responsible and carried out safely. An environmental clean-up has begun, involving the removal of internal materials to ensure the site is safe for demolition workers and the surrounding environment. The building has undergone a “soft strip” – a process where non-structural internal fixtures and fittings are removed, setting the stage for the complete demolition of the structure.

Donations and recycling initiatives 

Birmingham Newman University has donated mattresses and fridge freezers from the accommodation block to a local charity, providing much-needed resources to those in need. The university has also prioritised recycling as much of the building’s contents as possible. In an effort to be more sustainable, wooden bedframes, wooden shelving, radiators, wiring, and other reusable materials have been carefully extracted and sorted for recycling.  

A glimpse inside 

As part of the soft strip process, all furniture has been removed, leaving the rooms empty and ready for the next phase. 

The following images show the current state of the building’s interior, providing a glimpse into the now empty spaces that were once home for so many Newman students.  

Bedrooms in the original halls in the late 1970s.

Heartwarming discoveries 

During the clean-up inside the halls, the internal team at Newman discovered some beautiful, heartwarming messages left by students over the years, with some dating back as far as 1996. These messages are a testament to the sense of community and connection that Edgbaston Halls fostered for so many of its students over the years.  

Images of messages left behind on walls / cupboards from former Newman students.  

Looking forward 

The demolition of the Edgbaston accommodation block is an important milestone for Birmingham Newman University. Once demolished, the area where the Edgbaston building stood will be grassed and transformed into external space for our students and staff, with the potential for a new building on the site to serve future generations of students.  

Birmingham Newman University is committed to keeping everyone informed about the progress of this project. If you have any questions or would like further information about these developments, please attend one of the scheduled drop-in clinics. 

  • Thursday, 6th June, 2pm – 3pm, St Chads Atrium 
  • Thursday, 20th June, 2pm – 3pm, St Chads Atrium 
  • Tuesday, 11th July, 2pm – 3pm, St Chads Atrium

For updates on the demolition and redevelopment process, visit