VIDEO: Protest by university staff and students in Sheffield

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Staff and students from both city universities joined forces to protest over pay cuts, equality – and the vast sums paid to vice chancellors.

Picketers gathered outside the Cathedral, city centre, before marching up Fargate to Barkers Pool today.

Lecturers and students picket in Sheffield city centre. Photo by Chris Carter

Lecturers and students picket in Sheffield city centre. Photo by Chris Carter

The rally formed part of a two-day protest, in which disgruntled university staff nationally took action.

The strike, which began on Wednesday, comes in response to an offer from the Universities and Colleges Employers Association of a 1.1 per cent pay rise – an increase of 0.1 per cent on their previous offer.

Unions are jointly calling for a five per cent pay rise amid claims that staff pay has been slashed by 15 per cent in the last five years.

Meanwhile pay and benefits for university leaders rocketed by over six per cent in the last year – mean vice-chancellors pocket around £270,000 a year.

Lecturers and students picket in Sheffield city centre. Photo by Chris Carter

Lecturers and students picket in Sheffield city centre. Photo by Chris Carter

One picketer, a researcher at The University of Sheffield, said: “The pay offer is scandalous at a time when the vice chancellors are affording themselves such huge pay packets.”

Another lecturer at the university said: “The use of temporary staff, zero hours contracts and the pay discrepancy between men and women is disgraceful.”

Students Alex Weal, 21, Ben Michaels and Sally Marshall, both 23, were among many students at the picket.

Alex said: “It affects our education if staff are overworked, underpaid and unhappy. That’s why we’re here fighting too.”

Lecturers and students picket in Sheffield city centre. Photo by Chris Carter

Lecturers and students picket in Sheffield city centre. Photo by Chris Carter

Lecturers and students picket in Sheffield city centre. Photo by Chris Carter

Lecturers and students picket in Sheffield city centre. Photo by Chris Carter

Lecturers and students from both Sheffield universities have been striking over pay and conditions for staff

Lecturers and students from both Sheffield universities have been striking over pay and conditions for staff

Lecturers and students picket in Sheffield city centre. Photo by Chris Carter

Lecturers and students picket in Sheffield city centre. Photo by Chris Carter