THE president of the Newcastle University Students Association (NUSA), Michael Labone, has urged students to boycott the Callaghan Campus’ bars if they are privatised next year.
The University of Newcastle is seeking tenders from private operators to manage the Bar On The Hill and the Godfrey Tanner Bar in a bid to improve services.
This follows the recent decision to cease mid-week service of alcohol at the Bar On The Hill.
Full bar facilities remain available at concerts and student events like O Week and at the Godfrey Tanner Bar.
Mr Labone said NUSA is strongly opposed to privatisation and restricting service at the Bar On The Hill.
“Personally I would just encourage students to boycott the venue,” he said. “Privatisations only work because they are profitable, so make it operate at a loss and the Uni will have to take it back over.”
Mr Labone said NUSA submitted an expression of interest for the tender, but never received a reply.
Since the decision in August to turn off the beer taps at the Bar On The Hill, he said NUSA had fielded numerous complaints from students. However, he also said the iconic student bar had endured a slow decline.
“I think the poor management of the venue over the past few years has done all the damage it already could,” he said.
“Local bands don’t play here anywhere near as often as they should and the Uni puts on the same events every year. Combine boring events with lacklustre public transport availability and it is no wonder that the Bar On The Hill is dying.”