Writtle University College and ARU have merged. Writtle’s full range of college, degree, postgraduate and short courses will still be delivered on the Writtle campus. See our guide to finding Writtle information on this site.

Welcome to our Chelmsford campus

Student on university campus

You’ll find our campus nestled down by the river in the city’s University and Innovation Quarter, just a short stroll from the lively centre.

Chelmsford offers a warm welcome with a vibrant feel that’s the perfect base to explore the wider Essex and Suffolk counties, and the capital city of London which is just 30 minutes away by train.

Interested in discovering Chelmsford for yourself? Come along and explore. Book on to an open day or join one of our weekly campus tours. We’d love to welcome you to our campus.

Our campus: past, present and future

We’ve been around since 1893 when we started with adult further-education classes. In 1904 a foundation stone was laid in Market Road by Lord Rayleigh, which marked the start of our journey to create purpose-built further education buildings in Chelmsford – and we’ve never looked back.

We’ve continued to invest and grow to become the modern University we are today delivering work-ready graduates. Just some of the highlights of the campus today include:

  • our new School of Medicine, which is training a whole new generation of doctors
  • one of the largest business schools in the East of England, based in the award-winning Lord Ashcroft Building
  • high-quality study facilities – lecture theatres of course, but also mock hospital wards and our medical science SuperLabs
  • the university library and open access computer area
  • restaurant, cafés and plenty of outdoor space
  • Arise Chelmsford, an innovation centre to support businesses that are just starting out
  • a range of services including our Students’ Union, medical centre, gym, ARU Temps, and finance and accommodation offices.

A great place to study

In its serene location by the river, our Chelmsford campus is a great place to be. It offers plenty of outdoor space as well as fitness trails that run around and throughout the campus. With more than 6,000 students here, there's also a real multicultural feel.

As well as training the majority of the region’s nurses and midwives, we’re also home to students of education, law, engineering, business, architecture, computing and more.

It makes for a great mix of people.

Whatever you’re interested in we’ll help you work towards your ambitions. Our courses are recognised by industry, with many of them being professionally accredited, and we're rated Gold in the Teaching Excellence Framework 2023.

World-class teaching and research

There’s no doubt you’ll be inspired by our bright and highly motivated tutors. Our teaching staff hold or have been nominated for a number of prestigious higher education awards, either for teaching itself or their subject expertise. They benefit from industry experience which helps to form our courses and their teaching so you graduate with a degree that’s relevant to the workplace.

Add to this our growing reputation for world-leading research, with Chelmsford being the base for the International Policing and Public Protection Research Institute (IPPPRI), the Veterans and Families Institute for Military Social Research (VFI) and the Medical Technology Research Centre.

We’re proud to say the VFI is the first in the country to research the needs of former military personnel and their families. Meanwhile, the MTRC concentrates on medical technologies, life sciences and clinical research; and IPPPRI supports policing improvement through research, knowledge exchange and opportunities for continuing professional development.

Life on campus... and off

There's always something happening on campus, and whatever you're studying, you'll be close to social spaces, cafes, and Students' Union fun.

We're also just a ten-minute walk from the centre of Chelmsford and everything the city has to offer.

Here's an overview of some of the facilities and events on campus.

As well as the eateries below, vending facilities are available across campus.

Find out how our Catering Service supports our Sustainability Strategy in our Sustainable Food Policy.

The Central

The food serving area at The Central

The Central is a great place on campus to eat, meet and socialise. Pop in for breakfast, grab your favourite barista coffee and sit outside by the river, or stop by for a delicious lunch from one of our weekly changing food booths. Find The Central in the Lord Ashcroft Building.


The serving hatch at Hoffmans

The hidden gem of Chelmsford, Hoffmanns is the best-kept secret on campus. With barista coffee, iced drinks, sandwiches, salads, panini and pastries, it’s the perfect stop if you’re on-the-go. Find Hoffmanns on the ground floor of the Marconi Building.

Vending facilities are also available across campus.

Find out how our Catering Service supports our Sustainability Strategy in our Sustainable Food Policy.

If you’re a first-year undergraduate, it’s more than likely you’ll live on campus in the Student Village. Our students love the fact they’re only ever a few minutes away from all the action whether that’s lectures, cafes, the library, clubs or Students’ Union fun.

You can relax in the Students’ Union lounge, in the Tindal building, which hosts everything from bar nights to live music. The SU also supports over 30 student-led societies – together, they host a wide range of events throughout the year.

Meanwhile, the centre of Chelmsford is a ten-minute walk away with a wealth of things to do; visit the City life in Chelmsford page for more information.

All students can make use of the health and fitness facilities on campus in Chelmsford:

  • The Old Factory gym, featuring a range of cardiovascular equipment, fixed-resistance machines, free weights and a multi-functional fitness rig
  • fitness classes, which take place in The Old Factory and are included in the price of all gym memberships. Alternatively, you can take part on a pay-as-you-go-basis
  • Mildmay Sports Hall, which offers four badminton courts and a range of other indoor sports
  • a floodlit MUGA (Multi Use Games Area).

If you're interested in playing competitively, consider joining one of our sports clubs. Or, if you simply want to have fun and try some new things, there are 'turn up and play' Campus Sport sessions throughout the year.

There are a number of quiet spaces on our Chelmsford campus:

  • Wellbeing space/room in the Library
  • Library third floor (silent study)
  • Multi faith prayer, meditation, and quiet room
  • Forest Pod outside space
  • Riverside bench areas
  • The Labyrinth outside space.

Our University Library has also created a Wellbeing Art Trail for Chelmsford.