History & heritage

150 years of history

The origin of the university lies in the Victorian era when our founding independent, public art and design colleges opened their doors. Located in Canterbury, Epsom, Guildford, Farnham, Maidstone and Rochester, each college made it their mission to serve people in the local community and offer arts education regardless of social class.

The course programmes and buildings may have changed radically since then, but a passion for creativity and education still influences everything we do.

After a series of mergers, the University for the Creative Arts achieved full university title in 2008.

Our title, bestowed by the Privy Council in 2008, affirms our 150-year history as a leading provider of creative arts education in the UK. We're also the only provider of creative arts education in the country to be granted the word ‘creative’ in its name.

A new identity

In 2014, we carried out an extensive research and consultation exercise to re-define our brand position:

To educate, research and behave as the most creative university in the UK.

Our new identity reflects the spirit of our brand, which is encapsulated by the five key ideas of Freedom, Experimentation, Collaboration, Criticism and Rigour.

The stencil lettering which illustrates our visual identity alludes to the idea of craft and making.

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