University signs new partnership agreement with Ryde Town Council

Group of people stood in front of a hovercraft

To symbolise the two entities working cooperatively, the signing took place on a hovercraft in the middle of the Solent.

  • 26 July 2022
  • 3 min read

The University of Portsmouth and Ryde Town Council have signed a new partnership agreement to help raise the regional and national profile of both the Isle of Wight and Portsmouth.

The agreement covers areas of mutual interest such as addressing educational inequalities, finding solutions to environmental issues and supporting sustained economic growth in the region.

To symbolise the two entities working cooperatively, the signing took place on a hovercraft in the middle of the Solent as a symbolic gesture of this cross-Solent agreement.

Professor Graham Galbraith, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Portsmouth, shaking hands with  Cllr Michael Lilley, Mayor of Ryde and Vice-Chair of Isle of Wight Council

Professor Graham Galbraith, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Portsmouth (left), shaking hands with Cllr Michael Lilley, Mayor of Ryde and Vice-Chair of Isle of Wight Council.

Professor Graham Galbraith, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Portsmouth, said: “This initiative is one of many on the University’s long-term ambition to become a leading civic university and I am excited about its potential to facilitate working together on shared aims.”

Cllr Michael Lilley, Mayor of Ryde and Vice-Chair of Isle of Wight Council, said: “Ryde Town Council is delighted and excited about the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding with the University of Portsmouth. This is a historic celebration of the importance of Portsmouth to Ryde as the town's gateway to the mainland of England, the UK, and the rest of the world. Access to higher education establishments and all their resources and opportunities is essential to the residents of Ryde and the Isle of Wight.

This initiative is one of many on the University’s long-term ambition to become a leading civic university and I am excited about its potential to facilitate working together on shared aims.

Professor Graham Galbraith, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Portsmouth

“The signing will enable Ryde's community, businesses, educational establishment, voluntary sector and residents to access support and opportunities more easily and I believe it will change lives.

“I also believe that mutually the creativity, entrepreneurship and passion of Ryde will bring added value and an extra dimension to the University of Portsmouth. The active catalyst involvement of the travel operator, Hovertravel, enables our two communities to regularly meet and it is fitting to sign the agreement on a Hovercraft in the middle of the Solent. The Hovercraft is Ryde and Portsmouth's symbol of innovation, adventure, creativity and invention.”