THE new man appointed to lead a North-East university has taken up his post.

Professor Stuart Corbridge today (Tuesday) began took up the position of Vice-Chancellor and Warden of Durham University, having previously served as deputy director of the London School of Economics.

A Fellow of both the Royal Geographical Society and Royal Society of Arts, Prof Corbridge is an expert on development, with a particular interest in India.

Although unavailable for interview, Prof Corbridge issued a statement thanking staff and students and for making him feel welcome.

He said: “I know that Durham is a very special university.

“As well as being a world top 100 university with an impressive research portfolio and excellent teaching standards, our staff, students, colleges, departments, estate and traditions all combine to make this a wonderful place to study, work and live.

“I am very much looking forward to meeting the talented and dedicated staff and students as well as the wider University community.”

He also gave particular thanks to Professor Ray Hudson, who has been Acting Vice-Chancellor since October 2014 following the sudden retirement of Prof Chris Higgins.

Prof Hudson will now resume his role as Deputy Vice-Chancellor.

Robert Gillespie, Chair of Durham University Council, said: “Professor Corbridge is an exceptional individual who has good depth and breadth of leadership and management experience as well as having made a significant contribution to his academic area through his own fieldwork and publications.

“I have every confidence that he is the right person to lead the University forward and I look forward to working with him.”

A dedicated fan of Aston Villa and The Beatles, Prof Corbridge began his academic career in 1981 as a lecturer at Huddersfield Polytechnic.

He went on to hold posts at Syracuse, Cambridge and Miami Universities, before joining the LSE in 2001.