Wrexham University
Prifysgol Wrecsam
Coat of arms

Former name
Wrexham School of Science and Art (1887)
Denbighshire Technical Institute (1927)
Denbighshire Technical College (1939)
North East Wales Institute of Higher Education (1975–2008)
Glyndŵr University (2008–2016)
Wrexham Glyndŵr University (2016–2023)
MottoWelsh: Hyder trwy Addysg
Motto in English
Confidence through Education
Established1887 (1887) (Wrexham School of Science and Art)
2008 (2008) as a university (Glyndŵr University)
Endowment£0.2 million (2022)[1]
Budget£44.8 million (2021–22)[1]
ChancellorColin Jackson
Vice-ChancellorMaria Hinfelaar
Students6,045 (2019/20)[2]
Undergraduates4,885 (2019/20)[2]
Postgraduates1,160 (2019/20)[2]
53°03′14″N 3°00′22″W / 53.054°N 3.006°W / 53.054; -3.006
ColoursScarlet red   and Gold   (while Glyndŵr)[needs update?]
Main Wrexham building

Wrexham University (Welsh: Prifysgol Wrecsam; Welsh pronunciation: [priːvˈəsɡɔl ˈrɛksam]) is a public university in the north-east of Wales, with campuses in Wrexham, Northop and St Asaph. It offers both undergraduate and postgraduate degrees, as well as professional courses. The university had 6,045 students in 2019/20.

The earliest predecessor of the university was the Wrexham School of Science and Art (WSSA), established in 1887, which after several mergers became the North East Wales Institute of Higher Education (NEWI) in 1975. The institute became a full member of the University of Wales in 2004. In 2008 it was granted full university status and renamed Glyndŵr University (Prifysgol Glyndŵr) after Owain Glyndŵr, a fifteenth-century Welsh leader who was born near Wrexham and suggested the establishment of universities in Wales.[3][4] The term "Wrexham" was later added to the existing name in 2016, until the university adopted its current name in late 2023.

The university's School of Creative Arts operates the Wall Recording Studio[5] on its Plas Coch campus, the former home of Calon FM community radio station.


The university's origins date back to the opening of Wrexham School of Science and Art (WSSA) in 1887. At this time John Viriamu Jones called for a University of Wales.[6] The WSSA began offering University of London-validated degrees in science in 1924. The original name of Wrexham School of Science and Art was changed several times. In 1927, it became Denbighshire Technical Institute, becoming Denbighshire Technical College in 1939 and North East Wales Institute of Higher Education in 1975 by the merger of Denbighshire Technical College, Cartrefle Teacher Training College and Kelsterton College of Connah's Quay, Deeside. Initially, its degrees were validated by the University of Salford. Some famous alumni include Andrew Gwynne (when it was North East Wales Institute of Higher Education),[7] Gavin Roberts,[8] and Brian Percival (as North Wales School of Art and Design).[9]

In 1993, NEWI became an associate member of the University of Wales and all further education courses in Wrexham were moved to Yale College, Wrexham (now part of Coleg Cambria). In 2004, NEWI became a full member of the University of Wales, with "University of Wales, Wrexham" touted as a potential future name,[10] and in 2006 became accredited by the University of Wales and exercised devolved powers to validate and deliver its own degrees. The university was officially renamed "Glyndŵr University" in July 2008 after being granted degree awarding powers.[11] The university was visited by the Queen in 2003[12] and by Birgitte, Duchess of Gloucester in 2005.[12]

In June 2014, the Home Office suspended the University's authorisation to sponsor international students.[13]

On 24 November 2014 Glyndŵr University has had its right to sponsor international students reinstated by the Home Office.[14]

In 2016, the university underwent a minor name change and is now called "Wrexham Glyndŵr University" in English, and "Prifysgol Glyndŵr Wrecsam" in Welsh.[15]

Between 2008 and 2019, the main Wrexham campus of the University hosted Wales Comic Con, reduced to one-day events from 2022 following a brief absence.[16][17][18]

In August 2022, the university announced it was considering re-naming itself to "Wrexham University" (Welsh: Prifysgol Wrecsam) dropping "Glyndŵr" from its name.[19][20] On 27 April 2023, the university confirmed its plans to rename to "Wrexham University", following consultations with staff, students and other organisations, and approval by the Privy Council. The university stated the increased attention of Wrexham due to Wrexham A.F.C., Welcome to Wrexham and Wrexham's awarded city status, as reasons for the move. The university also made plans to "continue celebrat[ing] [Glyndŵr's] legacy".[21][22] The name change became official in September 2023, and the university maintains links with the Owain Glyndŵr Society to offer one of its top graduate awards.[23]


The university has various sites in Wrexham and north east Wales. From 2011 to 2018 it ran a campus in London.


The Centre for the Creative Industries, Wrexham

The university has two sites in Wrexham. The main site at Plas Coch covers 93 acres (380,000 m2), and was inherited from the former Cartrefle TTC which moved there in 1953. It houses over 70 seminar suites, conference suites, lecture theatres, workshops and laboratories, complemented with a library (the Edward Llwyd Centre) and learning resource facilities, as well as a sports centre, a Centre for the Creative Industries, the Centre for the Child, Family and Society, the Glyndŵr University Racecourse Stadium, a human performance lab, the Terry Hands studio, the Catrin Finch Centre, William Aston Hall, the Oriel Sycharth Gallery and the Welsh international hockey team.

The educational charity North Wales Science, owned by the university, operated a science discovery centre on the Plas Coch campus. The centre was open to schools and the general public, and in a partnership with Techniquest in Cardiff, was branded as 'Techniquest@NEWI' and later 'Techniquest Glyndŵr', from 2003 to 2020. In 2019, the charity decided to relocate to a site in Wrexham city centre, with their Henblas Street site opening on 3 October 2020, rebranding as 'Xplore! Science Discovery Centre'.[24][25]

Regent Street site in Wrexham

The other Wrexham site on Regent Street, is near to Wrexham city centre and is home to its North Wales School of Art and Design (NWSAD).[26] It formerly housed the Denbighshire Technical College, who moved to the site in 1927 (under their previous name of Denbighshire Technical Institute). In 2011, the university acquired the Racecourse Ground, the home of Wrexham FC, renaming it the Glyndŵr University Racecourse Stadium. The university sold the stadium back to the club on 29 June 2022.[27]

The university has its own music recording facilities, notably The Wall Recording Studio.


University building in St Asaph Business Park

The university shares the former Welsh College of Horticulture in Northop, Flintshire, with Coleg Cambria.

Academic profile

National rankings
Complete (2025)[28]128
Guardian (2024)[29]66
Times / Sunday Times (2024)[30]110

The university runs 150 programmes, offering foundation, HND/Cs, honours and master's degrees and doctorates over a broad variety of qualifications. In addition to professional courses such as nursing and social work, the university offers a range of postgraduate and undergraduate qualifications in Art & Design, Engineering, Science, Humanities, Health and Social Care, Criminology and Criminal Justice, Sports Sciences, Computing and Communication Technology, Music technology and Business. Although all courses are offered in English there are options to study or to be assessed in Welsh. A foundation degree in professional Welsh is also available.

The North Wales School of Art and Design at Wrexham Glyndŵr University was named as the best place to study Art in Wales in the Guardian University League Tables 2017 and also ranked 12th out of all UK universities.[31]

Wrexham Glyndwr University is also number one in North Wales for getting its students jobs after graduation. The institution achieved an employability figure of 92.1% and is also above the sector average for graduate level employment, according to the latest Destination of Leavers Survey (DLHE).[32]

International links

The University has international partnerships across Europe, Africa and Asia and is a member of the Fair Trade Coalition.


WGU's first principal (then as NEWI) was Glyn O. Phillips. He retired in 1991 and was replaced by John O. Williams. Following the retirement of Williams in 2000, NEWI appointed Michael Scott, a former student of the University of Wales, Lampeter in 2001. He was succeeded by Professor Graham Upton in January 2015 who served as interim Vice-Chancellor until 31 March 2016.[33] The current Vice-Chancellor is Professor Maria Hinfelaar who was the President of the Limerick Institute of Technology.


Wrexham Glyndwr University has two subsidiary companies: Glyndŵr Innovations Ltd and North Wales Science (Techniquest Glyndŵr – "TQG").

Collaborative partners include: Coleg Cambria : (Yale College & Deeside College), Coleg Menai, Coleg Llandrillo Cymru, Coleg Powys

Student life

Wrexham Glyndwr University's students come from all over the United Kingdom and the European Union. WGU is also popular with mature students. Around 54% of Wrexham Glyndwr University students are over twenty-one with 17% over the age of forty.[34]


There are three main halls of residence in Wrexham, namely the Student village, Wrexham Village and Snowdon Hall as well as Corbishley Hall at Northop. The main student village is separated into houses and the houses into flats. Snowdon Hall, Bath Road and Clwyd House are near Wrexham city. The student village and Snowdon Hall are en suite and the rest are shared facilities. All of Wrexham Glyndwr University's accommodation is self-catering. Snowdon Hall is separated into five separate blocks of lockable flats and is currently leased from and run by the Opal Group.

Sports, clubs and traditions

Wrexham Glyndŵr University sport teams compete in British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS). In the 2017 – 18 academic year, Glyndŵr University have 9 teams competing in the BUCS structure. Team sports played at the university are; Men's Rugby Union, Women's Netball, Men's Basketball, Men's Hockey, Men's and Women's Football, Men's and Women's Futsal.

Wrexham Glyndŵr University Sports Centre houses a 1000sq. m. hall. The hall is overlooked by an open balcony and an enclosed spectator area on the first floor. The facility complies with national competition standards for badminton, netball, basketball, volleyball, futsal and handball. There is also provision for table tennis and matting for martial arts.

On the first floor of the facility is a purpose-built sprung floor dance studio.

Wrexham Glyndwr University has a radio studio, sound recording studio, engineering laboratories, art gallery, IT facilities, theatre studios, motor racing team, a dedicated scene of crime lab and notably the unusual asset of a Chinese medicine clinic.

The Plas Coch site hosts an active student union as well as the student union bar, now housed in the football stadium's Centenary Club. Wrexham Glyndwr University has its own car racing team which is run by the engineering school's Car Performance degree course students. The North Wales Clinical School opened in 2007 at Wrexham Glyndŵr University's Plas Coch campus.

Also in the Plas Coch area of Wrexham are Wrexham A.F.C., North Wales Crusaders and the North Wales Regional Hockey Stadium. In August 2011, the university agreed a deal to buy Wrexham FC's Racecourse Ground.[35]

In October 2014, former Welsh international footballer Robbie Savage was given an honorary fellowship at the university for services to sport.[36]

See also


  1. ^ a b "Annual Report and Financial Statements For the year ended 31st July 2022" (PDF). Wrexham Glyndŵr University. Retrieved 21 February 2023.
  2. ^ a b c "Where do HE students study?". Higher Education Statistics Agency. Retrieved 1 March 2020.
  3. ^ "University's medieval rebel name". BBC News. 15 July 2008. Retrieved 3 May 2010.
  4. ^ "Owain Glyndŵr". glyndwr.ac.uk. Glyndwr University. Archived from the original on 23 September 2021.
  5. ^ of Creative Arts Facilities|accessdate=5 October 2017
  6. ^ Poulton, Edward Bagnall (2010). John Viriamu Jones and Other Oxford Memories. Nabu Press. ISBN 9781142706852.
  7. ^ "About Andrew". Andrew Gwynne MP. Retrieved 17 March 2023.
  8. ^ Live, Cheshire (11 February 2010). "Gifted Glyndwr University sports stars given award boost". CheshireLive. Retrieved 17 March 2023.
  9. ^ "Buzz Glyndwr University Staff Newspaper (Autumn 2013)" (PDF). Autumn 2013. p. 3.((cite web)): CS1 maint: date and year (link)
  10. ^ Live, North Wales (29 July 2004). "NEWI on road to university status". North Wales Live. Retrieved 28 April 2023.
  11. ^ "University's medieval rebel name". 15 July 2008. Retrieved 9 August 2022.
  12. ^ a b "Royal Visit 2003: 7587". 9 September 2007. Archived from the original on 9 September 2007. Retrieved 22 May 2023.
  13. ^ Jack Grove (24 June 2014). "Glyndŵr visa licence suspended amid Home Office crackdown". Times Educational Supplement.
  14. ^ "Glyndwr University ban on overseas students lifted". Retrieved 16 October 2020.
  15. ^ "Glyndwr University Undergoes Subtle Rebrand". Wrexham.com. Retrieved 18 September 2020.
  16. ^ "Wales Comic Con event moves from Wrexham to Telford". BBC News. 15 May 2019. Retrieved 20 August 2022.
  17. ^ "What to expect when Wales Comic Con returns to Wrexham on Sunday". The Leader. 18 August 2022. Retrieved 20 August 2022.
  18. ^ "Here's when 'epic' Wales Comic Con will return to Wrexham this year". The Leader. 3 July 2023. Retrieved 19 October 2023.
  19. ^ ""Glyndwr" could be dropped as part of university rebrand and name change". Wrexham.com. Retrieved 9 August 2022.
  20. ^ "Wrexham Glyndwr University considers dropping the name 'Glyndwr'". Nation.Cymru. 9 August 2022. Retrieved 9 August 2022.
  21. ^ "Wrexham Glyndwr University confirms name rebrand". BBC News. 27 April 2023. Retrieved 28 April 2023.
  22. ^ "Glyndwr University announces name rebrand following global Wrexham AFC interest". The Leader. 27 April 2023. Retrieved 28 April 2023.
  23. ^ University, Wrexham. "Prifysgol Wrecsam/Wrexham University unveils rebrand and new name". Wrexham University. Retrieved 19 October 2023.
  24. ^ "Wrexham's new science and discovery centre Xplore! celebrates its grand opening". Wrexham.com. Retrieved 5 April 2021.
  25. ^ "Wrexham science discovery Xplore! sets date for opening of new town centre venue". Wrexham.com. Retrieved 5 April 2021.
  26. ^ "Glyndwr University, Wrexham". The Independent. 30 July 2014. Archived from the original on 7 May 2022. Retrieved 20 August 2017.
  27. ^ ""Great day" as Wrexham Football Club acquires freehold of Racecourse Stadium from Glyndwr University". Wrexham.com. Retrieved 8 October 2022.
  28. ^ "Complete University Guide 2025". The Complete University Guide. 14 May 2024.
  29. ^ "Guardian University Guide 2024". The Guardian. 9 September 2023.
  30. ^ "Good University Guide 2024". The Times. 15 September 2023.
  31. ^ "Guardian University league tables 2017". TheGuardian.com. Retrieved 29 September 2016.
  32. ^ "Wrexham Glyndwr University Press Releases 2016". Retrieved 11 July 2016.
  33. ^ Glyndŵr University. "Dr Maria Hinfelaar appointed as new Glyndŵr University Vice-Chancellor". Retrieved 21 September 2016.
  34. ^ Wrexham Glyndŵr University. "Glyndŵr University – Why choose Glyndŵr University". Retrieved 24 March 2015.
  35. ^ "Glyndŵr university 'can afford' Wrexham's Racecourse". BBC News. 3 August 2011.
  36. ^ "Robbie Savage gets honorary fellowship from Wrexham Glyndŵr Uni". BBC News. 29 October 2014. Retrieved 29 October 2014.