A new faith and contemplation centre named after the late MP Jo Cox has been formally opened at the University of Huddersfield.

The Jo Cox More in Common Centre was opened by David Lammy MP, the Shadow Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, alongside Jo’s sister, the Batley & Spen MP Kim Leadbeater.

The ceremony was also attended by Jo and Kim’s parents Jean and Gordon Leadbeater, Mayor of West Yorkshire Tracy Brabin and Mayor of Kirklees Clr Masood Ahmed.

A plaque was unveiled to mark the opening of the new facility which replaces the previous Faith Centre which had been a feature of the Huddersfield campus for many years.

Jo’s family and other visitors were shown around the centre and met with members of the university’s varied faith societies, together with staff and contractors involved with the development of the project since its inception in 2021.

“It was a real honour and a genuine pleasure to be here for this very special and very personal event,” said Kim.

“The centre is ‘very Jo!’ It is a place for people to come together for contemplation, faith, reflection, friendship and support.

“We take great comfort that we have so many fantastic things that bear Jo’s name and this is a fantastic example of that. I felt very emotional walking up to the building to see her name on it.”

The Jo Cox More in Common Centre is the first building at the university to be built to the WELL Standard, enhancing sustainability, health and wellbeing through improved air, water, light and other factors.

It features a ‘living wall’ at the building’s entrance which features mosses that also contribute to the WELL Standard as well as highlighting Jo’s ethos that has inspired the establishment of the centre that “we are far more united and have far more in common than that which divides us.”

Mr Lammy said: “Thank you for naming this wonderful building after Jo for the wonderful work that will go on here, supporting students with their wellbeing, faith, counselling and the opportunity for them to grow as people to achieve what they want to do in their lives.”