University of Strathclyde Diamond Jubilee: 1964 to 2024

Celebrating 60 years since Royal Charter

Strathclyde’s Diamond Jubilee celebrates the University’s unique contribution to the world since the granting of our Royal Charter in 1964. The year-long celebration will look at our innovative approach to education and research and our impact on society over more than 225 years since our foundation in 1796, as well as looking to the future and the next chapter of the Strathclyde story.

Events celebrating our jubilee will take place throughout 2024, on our campus, in locations across the city and indeed around the world, as members of our 196,000-strong alumni community and the wider Strathclyde family join in the celebrations.

What are we celebrating?

Strathclyde is looking forward to a landmark year in 2024, which will see the 60th anniversary of us gaining University status.

The late Queen Elizabeth II signed the Royal Charter at Balmoral in August 1964, ensuring that what had been the Royal College of Science and Technology would become the first university established in Scotland for nearly 400 years.

Strathclyde had existed as an institution under various names since 1796, but it was the Royal seal which formally brought us into existence and opened the door for the research, learning and teaching, industrial engagement and informing of policy which we continue to practise.

We have never stood still throughout our history, continually enhancing and evolving the work we do, often leading the way for others to follow. Our campus has also been radically transformed, ensuring our staff and students have the advanced resources and facilities to keep us at the forefront of higher education in Scotland.

There have been many milestones over the past two and a quarter-centuries. Below, are just a few of the major events in our history.

Strathclyde Royal Charter.

Picture courtesy of University of Strathclyde Archives & Special Collections

Anderson's Institution to Royal Charter...

  • 1796 – Anderson's Institution is founded, following a blueprint laid out in the will of Glasgow scientist John Anderson
  • 1831 – Anderson's University building opened on George Street
  • 1903 -  laying of the foundation stone of the (now named) Royal College Building by King Edward VII, 14 May
  • 1912 - King George V approves a change in name to ‘The Royal Technical College’, 9 February
  • 1957 - Mechanical, Civil, Chemical, and Mining Engineering Building opened (renamed James Weir Building in 1968)
  • 1959 – Students' Union building opened in John Street on 18 May
  • 1964 - Queen Elizabeth II signs the Royal Charter which brings the University of Strathclyde into existence
  • 1967 – The Architecture Building, now part of the Learning and Teaching Building, is opened on 16 February

Graduations & Queen's Anniversary Prize...

  • 1972 – the Wolfson Building, now the base of the Department of Biomedical Engineering, is opened on 21 June
  • 1981 – Andersonian Library is opened
  • 1991 –first graduations held at Barony Hall
  • 1993 – Jordanhill College merges with Strathclyde to become the University’s Faculty of Education (now Institute of Education)
  • 1996 – in its bicentenary year, Strathclyde wins the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Electrical Power Engineering: Teaching and Research
  • 2000 – Hunter Centre for Entrepreneurship is established
  • 2011 – The Hamnett Wing of the Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences is opened by Nicola Sturgeon, then Health Secretary, on 31 October

Wolfson Building c1970s

Picture courtesy of University of Strathclyde Archives & Special Collections

Her Majesty The Queen and Professor Sir Jim McDonald at the opening of the Technology & Innovation Centre

UK University of the Year (twice!) & Queen opens Technology & Innovation Centre...

  • 2012 – Strathclyde is named UK University of the Year in the Times Higher Education Awards
  • 2015 – Technology and Innovation Centre is officially opened on 3 July by HM Queen Elizabeth II and HRH The Duke of Edinburgh
  • 2019 - Strathclyde is again named UK University of the Year in the Times Higher Education Awards, becoming the first, and still only, institution to win the award twice
  • 2019 – wins second Queen’s Anniversary Prize, for Pushing the boundaries for clean power
  • 2021 - wins third Queen’s Anniversary Prize, for Driving innovation and job creation in advanced manufacturing
  • 2023 – wins fourth Queen’s Anniversary Prize, for Excellence, innovation and entrepreneurship in photonics
  • 2023 - named European Entrepreneurial University of the year at the Triple E awards in Barcelona
  • 2023 - named Scottish University of the Year, Daily Mail University of the Year Awards 2024

Diamond Jubilee events

The Breath performing at Celtic Connections at the Barony Hall.

Breabach and Beolach performing together at the Barony Hall for Celtic Connections.