We have designed the on-campus graduation celebrations to replicate the usual graduation experience as much as possible without conferring the degrees (as these have already been conferred), and while also taking into account the extra measures required as a result of the pandemic. Whilst the difficult situation in which we are all operating means that we will not be able to run a standard ceremony, the outdoor celebrations will include many of the traditional features, including music, academic dress and speeches from University officials. We are also working on some special touches to include in the celebrations so that memories from your time at university can be shared.
The outdoor assemblies will take place in the Green Heart, with access to the arena via North Gate. The events will be standing room only, save for a small section of seating that will be reserved for anyone with mobility issues. Whilst there will not be any chairs set out in the outdoor arena, you are welcome to bring a blanket or seat with you if you would like to sit on the amphitheatre lawn in the Green Heart arena to watch on the outdoor cinema screen. This will be a live relay from the main stage, situated under cover of the celebration marquee at the bottom of the Green Heart arena. The celebrations will also be webcast so that anyone unable to join us on campus can watch from home.
Subject to any changes in government guidance, we hope that you will be able to bring as many guests with you to campus as you like. In the interests of safety we will need to limit the number of guests who can join you in the arena to two; just like we would for a standard Degree Congregation in the Great Hall. There will also be viewing rooms available around campus for any guests that we can't accommodate in the arena and as wet-weather contingency! Extra tickets are available for registered carers and babes in arms do not need a ticket.
We will open the Green Heart arena to attendees 30 minutes before the celebration start time, to give everyone a chance to get settled in and enjoy the complimentary refreshments. The formal part of the event will last approximately 30 minutes, after which there will be time for photographs before exiting the arena to enjoy the hospitality facilities on campus and have your Great Hall moment. We hope that the combination of this socially distanced outdoor ceremony and the exclusive on-stage experience we are putting together for you in the Great Hall will provide a truly celebratory experience in a COVID-secure manner.
The Great Hall will be open for the Moment on Stage from 9.00am (BST) to 5.00pm (BST) on each day of the celebrations.