NORMAN CONQUEST CALLED OFF

Norman Blake has stepped down in his bid to be Rector of the University Of Glasgow, clearing the way for Stuart Murdoch...

NORMAN BLAKE from TEENAGE FANCLUB has stood down from the nominations for Rector of GLASGOW UNIVERSITY to make way for BELLE AND SEBASTIAN frontman STUART MURDOCH.

University student Steven Findlay had nominated Blake, and in accordance with Rectorial Election rules, he had accepted the nomination. However, when he found out yesterday (February 1) that Stuart was also among the candidates, he stood down.

Blake told NME.COM: “Stuart’s a friend of mine and I pulled out when I heard he was up for it. It’s daft to have two indie-rockers go for the same post. Stuart went to Glasgow Uni and Belle And Sebastian did the video for ‘Legal Man’ [their Number 15 hit from last year] there.”

He reiterated that there is no rivalry between the two bands, with B&S member Chris Geddes having spent two weeks on tour with Teenage Fanclub in Japan recently, and said he planned to throw his weight behind Stuart’s bid to become Rector.

Murdoch has dropped out of Glasgow University three times, and it was thought to be the support of Belle And Sebastian fans studying at the Uni that helped the band win their Brit award for Best Newcomer two years ago.

Steven Findlay added: “I feel that this amazing display of West of Scotland camaraderie proves what a kind and generous person Norman is and shows what a brilliant rector he would have been.”

Murdoch will face competition from stand-up comedian and actress Karen Dunbar, comedian Greg Hemphill – both of whom appear on the BBCTV series ‘Chewing The Fat’ and author and artist Alasdair Gray.

The elections take place on February 28, with more than 15,000 students eligible to vote. The new Rector will serve three years and is expected to attend seven council meetings per year. Previous rectors include ‘EastEnders’ star Ross Kemp, who resigned after just two years, due to pressure of work, actor Richard Wilson, TV presenter Johnny Ball, singer Pat Kane and Winnie Mandela.