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Student dies in Britten House

The body of a first year student was found in his room in Britten House on Tuesday, March 12.

In a school-wide email to literature, drama, and creative writing (LDC) students, head of school Alison Donnell named the student as Theo Brennan Hulme, a literature and creative writing student.

She said Mr Brennan Hulme’s death was “the very worst news”.

In a statement Professor Donnell added: “Theo was a warm and personable young man and highly regarded by his lecturers, tutors and classmates as a talented writer with a huge amount of promise. He had quickly established himself as a much-loved member of our first year cohort and he will be greatly missed by all of us.

“Theo’s tutors have shared their strong sense of him as a thoughtful and committed student. His writing was a pleasure to read, filled with originality, engaging details and often humour. Theo could produce works of crisp precision or write more quirkily contemplative characters.”

She said: “I recognise that many of you will be affected by this loss to our school and I have cleared my diary for the next two days to welcome you to my office (Arts 2.19) to talk or just sit quietly as you wish.”

She said: “the most important thing for us is to be there for each other”, and included links to student wellbeing services.

Professor Donnell also said: “The Drama Studio will be open to all students wanting a quiet space from 3-5pm today and tomorrow.”

She said to students: “A condolences book will be made available and we will share arrangements over the next few days for a gathering to remember Theo.”

The student support service (SSS) is offering support to students who lived with Mr Brennan Hulme in Britten House, and this afternoon will hold one-to-one sessions for anyone who wishes to attend.

This is the fourth student death at UEA in 10 months, and comes amid growing calls from students for the university to focus more on student mental wellbeing.

A spokesperson for the vice chancellor said: “The death of a UEA student is something that affects our community deeply and, at this time, it is all the more important for both students and staff to look out for each other.

“If any student or staff member needs help with mental health or wider wellbeing then please reach out for help. Don’t think that your problem is not severe enough to ask for help, or that help is not there. It is.

“In recent years we have invested in mental health and wellbeing services at UEA. This year an additional £250,000 is being invested in student support services to improve access to services.

“This additional investment will go towards additional mental health first aid training for advisers, more wellbeing staff and greater online resources to give students more support, advice and guidance.”

Norfolk police said the ambulance service called them to campus at approximately 10.45am on Tuesday 12th March following a sudden death.

A spokesperson said: “The death of the man is not being treated as suspicious and a file will be prepared for the coroner ahead of the inquest which will take place in due course.”

Student support service will be holding sessions this afternoon (Wednesday 13th March) for anyone affected by Mr Brennan Hulme’s death.

Anyone who would like to attend one of these is advised to go to SSS reception and say that they are there in relation to Theo.

You can contact SSS, by calling 01603 592761 or emailing A full list of support services available can be found here.

Alternatively you can contact Samaritans on 116 123 24-hours a day or email



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Chris Matthews

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August 2022
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