Applications to study landscape architecture see strong growth at Sheffield after big promotional push

The University of Sheffield has reversed a downward trend in landscape architecture degree applications, reporting a 25-30 per cent increase this year.

The interest is in marked contrast to Kingston University, which closed its landscape architecture BA this summer after failing to attract enough students.

Andy Clayden, director of learning and teaching for the department of landscape at Sheffield, said: "We have made a huge effort in promoting our courses and trying to raise an awareness of landscape architecture as both a discipline and a career.

"When I speak at open days I am keen to stress how successful our students have been at obtaining graduate employment. Last year, 95 per cent found employment."

Greenwich University, which now offers the only Landscape Institute-accredited courses in London, is also planning for a strong landscape future, building a £76m campus with 14 roof gardens specifically for research and teaching.

Academic leader for landscape Ed Wall said: "There's an increasing awareness of the role of landscape architecture and support from Government. But there's still that difficulty explaining what the subject is."

He added that this year's numbers are "robust" for undergraduate entry despite apprehension after Kingston's decision. "It shocked quite a few people," he said. "But we are pretty confident things are on the up."

The university is expanding its programme, offering a new MA in landscape and urbanism from next autumn while continuing to integrate the landscape and architecture disciplines.

Numbers at Hadlow College are also up, by four per cent. Representative Pat Crawford said: "There's a recognition that there are jobs at the end of horticulture courses. But there still needs to be a lot of work."

Landscape Institute Accredited universities

- Birmingham City University
- Edinburgh School of Architecture & Landscape Architecture
- Hadlow College
- Kingston University
- Leeds Metropolitan University
- Manchester School of Architecture
- University of Sheffield
- Sheffield Hallam
- University of Gloucestershire
- University of Greenwich
- Writtle College

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