In the first day back of 2017 the House of Lords have defeated the Government (248-221) over an amendment to the Higher Education Bill which sets out the role and purpose of universities in our society.
Following the government defeat, Sue Garden, Liberal Democrat Higher Education Spokesperson in the Lords, said:
"The Higher Education Bill is not fit for purpose. The vote to leave the European Union has completely changed the higher education landscape, and universities will be particularly hit by Brexit.
"Theresa May is trying to carry on like its business as usual completely in denial of how leaving the European Union, and the Single Market, risk devastating our higher education sector.
"It is vital that the our Universities are retained as autonomous institutions, free to promote freedom of thought and expression and to bring the best and brightest students and academics to the UK. With this vote today we have taken a step to ensure the independence of universities, free from the political interference of this and future governments."