A common theme of the history of Goldsmiths is the recurrence of students and staff politically campaigning to make the world a better place.
It’s possible to select any decade of the 20th century and find evidence of lobbying and what could be described as political activism, or ‘political education.’
It does not mean all or even most of the students and staff were involved at any one time.
Or indeed that there was necessarily consensus and agreement.
Award winning and leading UK publisher, David Elliott, was an undergraduate student between 1961 and 1964 and he believes there was a ‘progressive atmosphere’ and ‘radical spirit’ at the college when he was there.
The then Warden of the College, Ross Chesterman, later knighted for services to higher education, had a reputation for being tolerant of protest and student activism while at the same time encouraging constructive and reasoned debate.
This may account for Goldsmiths’ College winning the University of London debating cup two times in the early 1960s and David Elliott was in one of victorious teams knocking the big London Colleges off their perch.