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Graduation 2016

Graduation is the highlight of the academic year here at the BSO - a special occasion and a really wonderful opportunity for fellow students, family, friends and staff to come together to congratulate our new graduates on their achievements and wish them well for the future.

We are delighted to invite you to attend Graduation on: Thursday 24th November 2016 at the prestigious Central Hall, Westminster.

Registering for the Ceremony and Tickets

We ask all *graduands attending to register online with Eventbrite: https://bsograduation2016.eventbrite.co.uk/

This is also where you will be able to purchase tickets for your guests.

NOTE: For security reasons Eventbrite is protected by a password which has been emailed to your BSO email address. 

You will need the names of each guest and your bank card details to make payment for tickets.

The cost of a guest ticket includes a seat at the ceremony in the Grand Hall followed by a drinks Reception at which a Westminster High Tea will be served.

Commemorative programmes of the event will also be available.

The cost of tickets (includes all booking fees):

  • Adult guests - £35.00
  • Children (6-12years) - £15.00
  • Infants (0-5years) - no charge
  • Graduands - no charge

For security reasons, when purchasing tickets, you will be required to submit the names of each guest, whatever their age.  We also request that on graduation day, all adult guests carry one item of photographic identification.

We will make every effort to seat friends and family together; another reason why we ask for Graduands to register when purchasing tickets.

To ease Registration on the day we ask that you print and bring your online tickets to the event. On arrival you and your guests will be asked to register at Reception and guests will be given tickets with their seat numbers for the ceremony in the Great Hall and also instructions for the Reception which is held on two levels.

The ceremony can be quite long for little children. If you plan to bring a young child we politely ask that you try to keep them quiet and seated throughout the ceremony.  For Health & Safety purposes children will require their own ticket/seat and will not be able to sit on laps.

If you have any guests with specific accessibility requirements please contact Julie Cometa j.cometa@bso.ac.uk, or Tel: 020 7089 5326. We will be happy to help with arrangements. It is important to let us know in advance, particularly for wheelchair users and we will try our best to seat family groups together.

If you are inviting guests from overseas and require a letter from the school to assist with visa applications please contact Phil Heeps on p.heeps@bso.ac.uk as soon as possible for assistance.

The closing date for purchase of tickets will be Thursday 3rd November 2016.

*Your invitation is subject to successful completion of your programme and will be confirmed once your final result has been agreed by the Board of Examiners and you have completed your degree successfully.

Gowns & Photographs

Gowns

The School’s official gown hire company and authorised photographers are Ede & Ravenscroft.

Please read the information below to successfully order your requirements.

Academic Dress

You are required to wear full academic dress of the University of Bedfordshire for the ceremony (gown, hood and mortar board).  This must be provided by and ordered in advance from Ede & Ravenscroft Ltd. 

We suggest you wear plain, simple and smart clothes, as these look best with the academic dress.  A shirt/blouse with buttons at the front will make it easier to secure the hood and keep everything in place.

On the day of the ceremony you will be able to collect your gown from Ede & Ravenscroft on the lower ground floor level.  You will be required to return your full academic dress at the end of the day at which point you be able to collect your degree certificate.

Academic dress must be ordered by Thursday 3rd November, latest.

Photography

Ede & Ravenscroft will be available for both individual and family group photographs from 09.00 on the lower ground level. We strongly advise you arrive in plenty of time as you and your family group may need to queue for photographs. There will be the facility to purchase some photographs on the day or order online at a later date.

For a more informal photograph Ede & Ravenscroft will also have an area for fun-group photographs so if you would like to arrange a small group you can go to this area, also on the lower ground level. You and your friends will be able to purchase these photographs on the day at a cost of £10 for each 8” x 6” photograph. We recommend you have a photograph team leader who can collect monies and pay for the groups’ photographs; this will be more efficient and allow time for others.

Please note that photographs take time, so please do not leave things until the last minute and remember the schedule for seating in the main auditorium (graduands are required to be in the auditorium by 12.15 and guests seated from 12.45).

There will be a photograph taken of each graduand whilst on the platform collecting your certificate.  These will be available at a later date on the Ede & Ravenscroft website, and information will be emailed to you when the photographs are available to order.

To log on to the website of Ede & Ravenscroft please go to http://www.gownhire.co.uk/ for both academic gown and photographic ordering service.  Please remember to bring along the pre-paid forms on the day; this will make collection of your order much quicker and easier.

The BSO will be taking photos at this event, for general promotional use, including online. If you do not wish photographs of you to be used for this purpose, or if you have any queries, please contact Julie Cometa at j.cometa@bso.ac.uk before the event.

Celebration Reception

The presentation ceremony is followed by a Reception.  Due to the large numbers and for the comfort of everyone, the Reception is held in both the Great Hall Foyer and the Rickard Foyer, on lower and upper levels.  Tickets will indicate on which level guests will be expected.  Our Patron HRH The Princess Royal, accompanied by the Principal, Charles Hunt, will move between both rooms and introductions will be made to as many graduands and guests as possible.

At the Reception we will be serving a celebration glass of red or white wine, a selection of soft drinks, and also the Westminster High Tea.

Westminster High Tea

The tea consists of a selection of smoked salmon and cream cheese, cucumber and free range egg and watercress sandwiches.  There will also be homemade, fruit scones with strawberry jam and whipped cream and a selection of afternoon cakes.

Freshly brewed Fairtrade coffee, tea and infusions will be available.

The Reception is expected to end at 17.00.

Useful Information

DRAFT Programme of Events, subject to confirmation and possible change so please check again at a later date.

09.00: Registration opens at Central Hall, Westminster.  All  graduands and guests to register in Reception.  Guests will be issued with their seat tickets.  A commemorative programme of the event will also be given to each guest.

09.05: Graduands  to go down to the Aldersgate Room on the lower ground level to collect academic gowns.  

9.15 - 12.15: Ede & Ravenscroft Photographic studio is open in the Aldersgate Room on the lower ground level.  Photographs take time, so please don’t leave it until the last minute.   Individual and family groups can be taken.  Also available will be an area for photographs with your friends.

Refreshments are available for purchase from the Wesley’s Cafe, located on the lower ground floor of Central Hall. If you order refreshments prior to the event, please remember that graduands are required to be in the main auditorium by 12.15 and guests from 12.45.

12.15: Graduands in the Great Hall for the group photograph - please don’t be late or you may miss out.

12.30: Graduands and Prize-Winners seated in the Great Hall for a briefing and rehearsal.

12.45: Guests invited to enter the Great Hall, to be seated no later than 13.00.  Again, it takes time to seat everyone so please don’t leave it until the last minute.

13.00: All seated in the Great Hall for arrival of dignitaries.

13.10: Presentation of awards.

15.15: Ceremony ends.

15.20: Members of Faculty leave the stage to the Reception, followed by the assembly.
Refreshments will be available on both upper and lower levels, and tickets will tell guests which level they are expected on.

17.00: Reception ends
All graduates must return robes and mortar boards before leaving.
You will be able to pick up your certificate as you hand in your gown.

FAQ’s

Where do I get tickets?
You book online using Eventbrite and giving the names of each of your guests. Remember you need the password, check your BSO emails. We recommend you print off the Eventbrite ticket and bring along on the day. On arrival at the venue you and your guests go to Reception to register.  Your guests will be issued with their seat tickets.  We will not be posting tickets.

What happens at the ceremony?
You and your guests will be given a programme of events when you register on the day.  This will also be made available on the website nearer the date.

When will I receive my certificate?
The scroll presented to you on the platform at graduation is not your certificate.  This will be given to you when you return your academic dress at the end of the event.  If you do not attend the ceremony your certificate will be posted to your home address. It would be helpful if you let us know and also confirm your address.

I am not bringing any guests to the cermony: do I still book online?
Yes, you do need to book online in order for a seat to be available for you at the presentation. There is no cost for this online booking.

Do I have to pay for my ceremony ticket?
No, Graduands do not have to pay to attend graduation day.  You will only need to pay for guests you bring to the ceremony.

Do I have to wear full academic dress?
Yes, you are required to wear full academic dress for the ceremony (gown, hood and mortar board). This must be provided by and ordered in advance from Ede & Ravenscroft Ltd, our official gown hire company and authorised photographers.  It is policy that only full outfits can be hired and price cannot be broken down.
Remember the deadline for ordering is Thursday 3rd November 2016.

Where do I order my robes and photography from and how much will it cost?
Robes are ordered online and all the information about ordering is available on the website at www.gownhire.co.uk. You will need to supply your height and head circumference in centimetres when ordering. Remember to bring along the pre-paid forms on the day, to help with your order.

I can’t remember the password to access gown hire and photography booking?
Check your BSO email account for the password.  If you still have problems then contact Julie Cometa on j.cometa@bso.ac.uk

Where is the venue,  how do I get there and is parking available at the venue?
Central Hall Westminster is located on Storey's Gate, across the road from Westminster Abbey and the Houses of Parliament and can be easily accessed in a number of different ways.
https://www.c-h-w.com/contact/transport/

Underground
Westminster station - Jubilee, Circle and District lines.
St James' Park station - Circle and District lines.
Victoria station - Victoria, Circle and District lines.

British Rail
Central Hall is within easy walking distance of Victoria, Charing Cross and Waterloo mainline stations.

Buses
Buses 11, 24, 148 and 211 pass the door.
Buses 3, 12, 53, 53X, 87, 88, 109, 159 and 453 stop nearby.

Car Parking
We recommend you look on the venue website for information about parking.
https://www.c-h-w.com/contact/transport/

What time do I need to be at the venue?
Graduands can collect academic dress from 09.00 and are to be seated in the auditorium by 12.15.  Guests must be seated in the auditorium by 13.00 at the very latest.  Please allow plenty of time, we recommend taking seats at least 15 minutes before the deadline. Timing is exact and we cannot accommodate latecomers.

Can I bring children to the ceremony?
The presentation ceremony lasts a long time for young children to sit still, so it’s down to your judgement about how your child will cope. You may want to bring some quiet diversions – colouring books etc!  If you do bring a child a ticket must be purchased for them.  Children are very welcome to come to the Reception afterwards.

Will I be seated with my guests?
All Graduands will be seated together in order of procession for presentation.  However, you will be able to see your guests and there are no restricted views in the auditorium.

Are there wheelchair spaces available?
Yes, we can accommodate wheelchairs. Please make this clear on the application form if your guests require wheelchair access and allow plenty of time.

Can I buy tickets on the day?
No, all tickets must be purchased online in advance. The closing date is Thursday 3rd November 2016.

May I take photographs or video during the ceremony?
Yes, but we ask for no flash photography or standing/moving around during the ceremony.

If you have any further queries not answered here then please contact Julie Cometa on j.cometa@bso.ac.uk or Tel: 020 7089 5326.