Lecture theatre named in honour of former Chair of the Council
The ‘Montagu Lecture Theatre’, on the sixth floor of the Graduate Centre, was officially opened on 27 September.
The Harvard style lecture theatre (GC601) in the recently opened Graduate Centre was renamed in honour of Sir Nicholas Montagu, who served as Chair of QMUL Council from August 2009 until July 2017. The opening of the ‘Montagu Lecture Theatre’ follows in the tradition established with the naming of the Martin Harris and Colette Bowe rooms in the Queens’ Building, which were named after previous Chairs of Council.
The Graduate Centre is the home of the School of Economics and Finance, in which Sir Nicholas has a particular interest, as the chair of the Financial Ombudsman Service. The building was conceived and built during his time at QMUL.
Sir Nicholas began his career as a lecturer in philosophy at the University of Reading before joining the civil service, overseeing large-scale projects in the Department for Transport, such as the operation of a high-speed rail link between London and the Channel Tunnel. He later became chair of the Inland Revenue, championing diversity within the department. While Chair of QMUL Council, he also served as Chair of the Committee of University Chairs, which is responsible for developing, providing and promoting governance guidance for the UK higher education sector.
Sir Nicholas became Chair of Council in August 2009, serving for almost eight years, and remains very interested in the academic life of Queen Mary. During his tenure, the university made many significant achievements including joining the Russell Group and opening the first new dental school in the UK in 40 years. Honouring him with the opening of the ‘Montagu Lecture Theatre’ reflects the significant contributions that Sir Nicholas made to Queen Mary during his time as Chair of Council.