Our stories

UCEM Centenary 1919-2019 View our heritage timeline
Opening of new wing, 35 Lincoln's Inn Fields, programme View image
Opening of new wing, 35 Lincoln's Inn Fields, programme

Programme for an event opening a new wing of CEM’s premises. The new wing was the addition of 20 Portugal Street to the existing 19 Portugal Street and 35 Lincoln’s Inn Fields site, to add new lecture halls and administrative rooms.

Birthday wishes

Happy birthday UCEM. This apprenticeship is and will be a life changing experience for myself and I am grateful for all the support I have received. Thank you.
Rebecca Turner

“Stay curious! The best part of learning is falling down a ‘rabbit hole’ of knowledge.”
Bex Gibson

Memory box Read Claire Brown's story
Destruction at Lincoln's Inn Fields after the Blitz View image
Destruction at Lincoln's Inn Fields after the Blitz

Post-Blitz outward view from CEM’s 35 Lincoln’s Inn Fields premises, 1941

Lincoln's Inn Fields postroom after the Blitz View image
Lincoln's Inn Fields postroom after the Blitz

Photograph of the post deparmental at CEM’s premises in 35 Lincoln’s Inn Fields site, post-Blitz

Neville Chamberlain opening CEM's new wing in 1927 View image
Neville Chamberlain opening CEM's new wing in 1927

Photograph, featuring future Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, at the opening of a new wing at CEM, October 1927. At this time, Chamberlain was the Minister for Health in the Conservative government. He had previously worked on the Unhealthy Areas Committee (1919-21) and tried to improve the slums of London and Birmingham, an interest which led to him accepting the Minister for Health role and would explain why he visited CEM. From 1937, he was Prime Minister, most famous for his policy of appeasement towards Hitler. The New Wing being celebrated in this photograph was the addition of 20 Portugal Street to the existing 19 Portugal Street and 35 Lincoln’s Inn Fields site, to add new lecture halls and administrative rooms.

Memory box Read John Charles Eddcumbe's story
Ashley UCEM Principal Read foreword
Birthday wishes

Happy centenary! Here’s to the next century of UCEM! 😊
Bex Gibson

35 Lincoln's Inn Fields, postal dept View image
35 Lincoln's Inn Fields, postal dept

Photograph of the post deparmental at CEM’s premises in 35 Lincoln’s Inn Fields site, pre-Blitz

35 Lincoln's Inn Fields premises purchase booklet View image
35 Lincoln's Inn Fields premises purchase booklet

An advert for the sale of Lincoln’s Inn Fields and Portugal Street premises, June 3rd 1920, which would eventually become CEM’s premises.

“To have passion and consistency for this industry toward building a better future also save our heritage structures.”
Sina Antonio Talaei

Drawing of Lincoln's Inn Fields by Mr Hanslip Fletcher View image
Drawing of Lincoln's Inn Fields by Mr Hanslip Fletcher

A drawing of 35 Lincoln’s Inn Fields site by Mr Hanslip Fletcher, featured in an article in The Times on 27 June 1943, reporting that the Lincoln’s Inn frontage of the premises mostly survived the Blitz bomb raid on 10 May  1941. The article reports that extensive damage was done to the Portugal Street side of the building.

Birthday wishes

Happy 100 years old UCEM. It’s an honour to be a member of your team. Wish you all the best!
Sina Antonio Talaei

“UCEM is the source of knowledge for construction sector.”
Muluken Belete Woldie

Memory box Read Alison Nimmo's story

“Only do work that you find fulfilling and enjoy.”
John Charles Edgcumbe

July newsletter Read more
Birthday wishes

The College became eventually UCEM and I wish it another century of helping students in the Property Industry.
John Charles Edgcumbe

““Chase down those opportunities; whenever and wherever they present themselves. None of us know what’s coming next. We just need to be alive to the opportunities; open minded and prepared to grab them with both hands.”
Dame Alison Nimmo DBE, CEO, The Crown Estate and winner of the UCEM Property Award 2018

June newsletter Read more
Birthday wishes

Happy birthday UCEM well done!
Muluken Belete Woldie

Memory box Read Andrew Marston's story
Crystal videos Read more
Entrance Hall 35 Lincoln's Inn Fields View image
Entrance Hall 35 Lincoln's Inn Fields

Drawing of the entrance hall at CEM’s 35 Lincoln’s Inn Fields premises.

Speakers on stage Read more

“The more you put into it, the more you get out of it. It is not just about getting good grades but about expanding the knowledge base, and contacts, that you will rely on throughout your future careers,”
Jan Wilcox

“I have always had the highest admiration for UCEM students. To undertake a full degree, distant taught, requires a level of self-discipline that I would struggle to muster, particularly when juggling all the other demands in their lives. However, it instils an approach to education current students should foster for life. The next 100 years is only going to change more than ever. An open mind towards education and training will be a valuable tool.”
Andrew Marston

Group shot of the speakers Read more
Time Capsule Open time capsule
Birthday wishes

It’s worked well for 100 years so don’t change everything. Some of the good bits are worth keeping.
Jan Wilcox

Memory box Read Shing Kwong Eric's story
The History of UCEM Read more

WW2: Women's Land Army

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April newsletter Read more
Pigs at 35 Lincoln's Inn Fields View image
Pigs at 35 Lincoln's Inn Fields

Following CEM’s temporary relocation to 11 Great George Street following the destruction of 35 Lincoln’s Inn Fields during the Blitz, the ruins of 35 Lincoln’s Inn Fields were adopted by the National Fire Service, who established a ‘Pig Club’. At one point, there were 36 pigs being reared in the ruins, as well as cockerels and rabbits. The firemen were raising and selling the animals to help to supplement wartime rations. This article is from the Picture Post, 03 April 1943. Picture Post was the UK’s equivalent of Life magazine, and in 1943 it had a circulation of nearly 2 million a week.

Birthday wishes

It is wonderful to see UCEM celebrate it’s centenary, particularly given some of the challenges I know it has gone through, particularly over the past 20 years or so. It is now a very different entity to the one I worked in and is going from strength-to-strength. Wish UCEM, its staff and students, all the best as it begins its second century.
Andrew Marston 

Time Capsule Open time capsule

Worsley: Scholar and soldier (1895 - 1974)

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Memory box Read Lawrence's story
Blitz damage Lincoln's Inn Fields View image
Blitz damage Lincoln's Inn Fields

35 Lincoln’s Inn Fields after an incendiary raid during the Blitz. The building was damaged by enemy action in the Autumn of 1940, before being devastated by incendiary bombs in the Spring of 1941. The destroyed building led to CEM being temporarily rehomed at 11 Great George Street for the duration of the war.

The BCO and UCEM Read more
Group of volunteers with their spades Read more
March newsletter Read more
Desert Rose Read more
Memory box Read George's story
Irene Barclay Read more

WW2: Prisoners of War

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February newsletter Read more
Design a Building Read more
A group shot of smiling volunteers Read more
Crossrail Read more

Establishing UCEM

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UCEM headquarters, Horizons from view Read more
Ashley addressing staff at the launch event Read more
Birthday wishes

Forever young and energetic, UCEM Happy 100th Birthday!
Shing Kwong Eric Cheng

Year group 1968 Read Tim's story
January newsletter Read more
Inaugural ceremony - Estates Gazette View image
Inaugural ceremony - Estates Gazette

A copy of the Estates Gazette from 14 April 1923, reporting on CEM’s inaugural ceremony. CEM’s first President and Principal are pictured.

Red Cross - Prisoners of war View image
Red Cross - Prisoners of war

This British Red Cross replica book parcel is how CEM correspondence courses would have been sent to students in Prisoner of War and internment camps. The red cross emblem is a special protective sign used during armed conflicts, and its use is restricted by law. For further information, please see the emblem page on www.redcross.org.uk or contact the British Red Cross International Law Department at contactus@redcross.org.uk.

WW2: Educating the military, including Prisoners of War

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Develop a thirst for knowledge and ensure you are always on some course or another – it will never be wasted and is an excellent investment for the future. The internet offers boundless opportunities.
George Demetri

Irene Barclay View image
Irene Barclay

Irene Barclay, Britain’s first female Chartered Surveyor, who studied for her professional examinations with CEM.

John Gellatly Read foreword
CEMs Royal Charter 1922 View image
CEMs Royal Charter 1922

CEM’s Letters Patent (Royal Charter), 1922.

Birthday wishes

Happy Birthday UCEM!  Even as a distance learner I feel part of a very exclusive family and I am so proud to have been a student.
Sara Kelleher

UCEM life

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Anticipation and preparation help make the most of life’s opportunities.
Lawrence Parnell

Colonel S.J Worsley View image
Colonel S.J Worsley

Portrait of Colonel S.J. Worsley, who was appointed CEM’s Principal in 1945.

Memory box Read Andy's story

Always look up to meet the challenge. UCEM can lend you a helping hand.
Shing Kwong Eric Cheng

Plan! Make sure you plan your time. I used to use Excel with the dates of exams and assignments on and make sure I gave myself plenty of time! Also make full use of forums. They are there to give you direct access to the experts.
Sara Kelleher

Wrought iron staircase View image
Wrought iron staircase

Wrought iron staircase currently at the V&A Museum, having been bequeathed by CEM in 1921. The staircase was originally in situ at 35 Lincoln’s Inn Fields.

Careers in captivity View image
Careers in captivity

This article, titled “Careers in Captivity – Seizing the Opportunity for Studying”, was published in the Prisoner of War magazine in May 1942 – a magazine that was published by the Red Cross for families of POW.

35 Lincoln’s Inn Fields

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Birthday wishes

Congratulations UCEM, here’s to the next 100 years – by which time the conservationists of tomorrow will be preserving what we build today!
George Demetri

Cricket match at Hinchley Wood in June 1965 View image
Cricket match at Hinchley Wood in June 1965

A selection of photos taken at a cricket match at Hinchley Wood in June 1965.

Surveyors in the making View image
Surveyors in the making

An article in the Estates Gazette supplement from 05 March 1910 titled ‘Surveyors in the Making’ about ‘Famous Westminster Coaching Centre’ Parry, Adkin and Parry. This was, of course, the pre-cursor to CEM’s founding in 1919.

WW2: The Blitz

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Wartime register WW2 View image
Wartime register WW2

Student register listing WW2 POW students, 1943-44.

POWs studying in POW camp Stalag XXA located in Poland View image
POWs studying in POW camp Stalag XXA located in Poland

Photo of POWs studying in POW camp, Stalag XXA, located in Poland.

Practical Surveying, teaching a student 1937 Read Gerald's story
Heritage Lottery Funded Read more
The Cemian student magazine from 1960s/70s View image
The Cemian student magazine from 1960s/70s

A collection of photographs of The Cemian student magazine from the 1960s/70s.

WW2: Civilian student in the internment camp

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Memory box Read Sara's story
Time Capsule Open time capsule
Student Register 1921-22 View image
Student Register 1921-22

A photograph of the student register, 1921-2. Having acquired funding, premises and staff following its founding in 1919, CEM commenced full tutorial work on 01 April 1921.  In the academic year 1921-2, CEM had 11 full time students, 184 evening class students, and 615 postal students.

UCEM emblems

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CEM Students' Union Colours Awards View image
CEM Students' Union Colours Awards

CEM Students’ Union Colours Awards, 1940s – 1960s. These awards were for a range of sports, from cricket to rifles, from rowing to rugby (or ‘ruggers’, as it is listed on one of the pages). These Students’ Union Colours Awards illustrate how broad and social life at CEM was across the decades. In addition to sporting activities, the Students’ Union had a Motor Club, Sailing Club, Debating and Literary Society, and Photographic, Gramophone, Jazz and Musical Societies.

Birthday wishes

Happy birthday UCEM, here’s to another 100 years.
Andy Dodson

Peter Huntsman Read Peter's story

WW2: UCEM emblems

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CEMs inaugural ceremony programme View image
CEMs inaugural ceremony programme

Programme from CEM’s inaugural ceremony, hosted by HRH The Prince of Wales, 10 April 1923.

11 Great George Street Read Michael's story
Time Capsule Open time capsule

Stick with it, it’s worth it.
Andy Dodson