Author Fay Weldon given Bath Spa University role
Acclaimed writer Fay Weldon has been appointed a professor of creative writing at Bath Spa University.
The author of the Life and Loves of a She-Devil is one of 16 new professors to be appointed at the university at Newton Park.
The institution says Ms Weldon, who is 81, has a full-time post, with the appointments part of a wider programme or development and growth led by vice-chancellor Professor Christina Slade.
Other new academics include novelists Philip Hensher, Kate Pullinger and David Almond, artist Gavin Turk and composer Joe Duddell.
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The university hopes they will breathe new life into its creative writing, art and design, and music and performing arts departments.
Professor Slade said: "Bath Spa University is a leading education institution in creativity, culture and enterprise. These appointments build upon our excellence in creativity and will enhance our teaching and research.
"Each of the new professors brings with them a wealth of knowledge and experience that will prove invaluable to the fulfilment of our vision to expand and become a truly international university whose students are global citizens."
Ms Weldon is a former advertising copywriter, who also wrote the first episode of the original TV series Upstairs Downstairs.
She has also been a professor of creative writing at Brunel University in Uxbridge, and once said: "A great writer needs a certain personality and a natural talent for language, but there is a great deal that can be taught – how to put words together quickly and efficiently to make a point, how to be graceful and eloquent, how to convey emotion, how to build up tension, and how to create alternative worlds."
Ms Weldon has already started, while the others are due to join the university in early 2013.
The academics will work on research collaborations, give lectures and provide expertise to students.
Student union president Amy Dawson added: "Bath Spa is a wonderful place to be a student.
"Not only are the campuses beautiful, it is a welcoming, friendly and creative environment.
"The new professors are a very welcome addition to a great team of tutors who help guide us through the best years of our lives."