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THE UK: Student Accommodation

Accommodation questions answered by....Keele University

We speak to Keele University about the student accommodation options they offer to international students studying in the UK.

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In the latest of our accommodation "expert view" Q&As, we speak to Keele University about the housing options they offer to international students. Have you got a housing-related question? See if we answered it below:


How can international students find accommodation? Is accommodation on or off-campus?

‘When you move to a new country it can be difficult to know what to expect. One of the most important things knows what it will be like to live there. To help with this transition, you will be able to live in University accommodation whilst you are studying at Keele, most of which is on campus. Our centrally heated accommodation is clean and secure with staff available 24 hours a day to offer support and advice.

We want you to feel at home at Keele so before you leave your country, you will get a copy of our Welcome to Keele Accommodation Guide which includes lots of information about what to bring and what to expect, and on arrival there will be a Welcome Package. 

Moving to another country can be difficult but it is even harder if you are bringing your family. We will make every effort to meet the requirements of students with families, whether staying for a whole semester or full academic year.’


How are students allocated housemates? Additionally, if students need help finding housemates, how do the university help?

‘When you apply for your accommodation at Keele, you can let us know about your hobbies and musical preferences. We then try to group people together with similar interests. In buildings with shared bathrooms, we have single gender accommodation.

If you prefer to live off campus, you can join our message board and let others know you are looking for someone to share with.’


If students are not happy with their accommodation, can they change?

‘We do offer students the option of changing their room. However we know that settling in to a new home can take time, so you can only apply for a room change once the academic year has already started. Room changes are subject to availability.’


What is included in the cost of accommodation? How are rooms furnished?

‘Our rent includes all utility costs and Wi-Fi. We also have a 24 hour security patrol and emergency maintenance call out. Some rooms are sold with catering included, whilst the rest are self-catering.

All rooms have a bed (all are single beds except for Premier Ensuite which have a 4 foot wide bed), desk and chair, bedside cupboard, wardrobe, shelves, duvet, pillows and telephone. You will need to provide bed linen, crockery, cutlery and cooking equipment.

If you are travelling from outside the UK, you can pre-order some of these items so they are waiting in your room for you when you arrive. Alternatively you can join one of the organised shopping trips to get all you need.’


Horwood Hall accommodation, University of Keele
Horwood Hall accommodation, University of Keele



What kind of security measures are in place across the various accommodations?

‘Accommodation buildings are accessed by either a key or card. All bedrooms have their own lock and ground floor windows have a bar to prevent unauthorised access through the windows. We also have a 24 hour security patrol and CCTV which is monitored 24 hours a day.’


How are food/cooking arrangements handled in accommodation?

‘If you choose the catered package you can get your breakfast and dinner in one of our restaurants either 5 or 7 days a week. You can also use the accommodation kitchens to make snacks.

If you prefer to cater for yourself, we have a range of catering outlets on campus including a grocery store. In trying to meet everyone’s needs, we’ve created a wide variety of options that allow you to eat according to your lifestyle and schedule. The common thread, of course, is that you will always be able to choose from fresh, healthy and delicious food options served in a welcoming and relaxed environment. You can also cook for yourself in your accommodation kitchen which will have a cooker, microwave oven, kettle, fridge and freezer.’


Tell us about the surrounding areas around campus?

‘Keele’s main campus has the best of both worlds, from the beautiful estate with woods, lakes and parkland to a buzzing centre of shops, the Students’ Union, cafés and restaurants. We have extensive sports fields, tennis courts and indoor sports facilities including a state-of-the-art Fitness Centre and courts for basketball, five-a-side football, badminton, squash, netball, korfball, karate and aerobics. Keele is in North Staffordshire halfway between Manchester and Birmingham. The University is on a hill overlooking the town of Newcastle-under-Lyme (two miles from Keele) with Stoke-on-Trent (and its main shopping area Hanley) just a couple of miles further. The local area is famous for its pottery industry and is home to many famous names including Royal Doulton and Wedgwood.  

There is a thriving student life around the campus and a wide range of café-bars, restaurants and pubs in Newcastle and clubs in Hanley.

Theatre lovers will enjoy the New Vic in Newcastle and the Regent in Hanley, while the latest films are shown at the multi-screen cinema in Newcastle. The UK’s biggest theme park, Alton Towers, is around 45 minutes from the University.

Keele’s central location means it is easy to get anywhere in the country, with the M6 and rail links close at hand. Manchester and Birmingham are each an hour’s drive away, while London is less than two hours by train.’


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