By PETER WALSH
Friday, February 1, 2013
Multi-award winning actor John Hurt was installed as chancellor of the city’s newest university on what has been described as a “great day” not only for students at Norwich University of the Arts (NUA), but the whole of the county.
NUA, formerly Norwich University College of the Arts (NUCA) and Norwich School of Arts and Design (NSAD) before that, celebrated the landmark day in its 170-year history by officially unveiling the critically acclaimed actor as its figurehead at a civic ceremony at City Hall.
Mr Hurt CBE, who counts Alien, Elephant Man and Tinker, Tailor Soldier Spy among the 150 or so films to his credit, said he was honoured to accept the role, but was looking to be more than just a figurehead for NUA in its exciting new future.
“In a sense it’s no more than that, but I’m prepared to go much further than that,” he said.
“It’s future has to be under constant debate and I would like to fan the flames of that debate and be a part of that debate and even be central to it if that’s necessary.”
Mr Hurt said he would be committed to his role at NUA and helping to give it a bright and exciting future and so would be a frequent visitor to Norwich which he described as a “super city”.
“I don’t know it that well and hope to get to know it better,” said Mr Hurt who has fallen in love with the county since moving her four years ago.
“I love the county. I find it full of surprises yet it’s modest.”
NUA was one of 10 Higher Education Institutions in the country to have met criteria to be awarded the ‘University’ title last year, and following Privy Council approval, became Norfolk’s second university.
Professor John Last, vice-chancellor of NUA, said he was delighted with the change.
“It’s confirmation of the quality of the work we do and of the traditions which goes back 170 years,” he said.
<t> Mustard TV Online spoke to John Hurt at the civic ceremony to mark his appointment as the first chancellor of NUA. He produced an exclusive film on why he chose to live in Norfolk and what he hopes to see from local television which will broadcast this weekend.