Bath leaves 1994 Group
The University of Bath has left the 1994 Group of small research-intensive universities with its vice-chancellor saying continued membership of the organisation "does not reflect the type of university we are".
In a statement issued today, the university said its head Dame Glynis Breakwell had informed Michael Farthing, the group's chair and University of Sussex vice-chancellor, of its decision to withdraw membership.
The decision will come as a blow to the 1994 Group, which lost four members earlier this year to the Russell Group of research-intensive universities. It will also fuel speculation that Bath may be about to follow suit.
There had been suggestions that Bath would be a prime candidate to become a Russell Group member as it is among the institutions with the highest proportions of undergraduates holding A-level grades of AAB or above.
Dame Glynis said: "Our community comprises a high proportion of postgraduate students and consistently delivers excellence in both research and teaching, demonstrated by our highest ever ranking in the national league tables.
"This year we have successfully recruited more of the most able students than ever before, and recent large scale research grants show the quality of the work we do here.
"Continued membership of the 1994 Group does not reflect the type of university we are, nor sit well with the future direction of the university's strategy.
"We will continue to focus on our mission to deliver world class research and teaching and, where appropriate, will remain involved in existing collaboration initiatives with other leading universities.
"We are actively exploring future opportunities to work together with colleagues regionally, nationally and internationally."