A UNIVERSITY will arrange its multi-million investments along more ethical lines in a major victory for student protesters.

The University of Sussex has announced the approval of a new socially responsible investment policy which could see it pulling hundreds of thousands of pounds from oil, mining and arms companies.

The university is set to instruct fund managers to invest in firms that promote human rights, protect the environment and climate and support an end to international conflict from this summer.

Brighton Pavilion MP Caroline Lucas welcomed the move and called on other public bodies in Sussex including Brighton and Hove City Council to follow the university’s example.

The announcement follows a prolonged campaign by Fossil Free Sussex calling on the university to end its investment in firms that were harming the planet.

Last year campaigners revealed that around five per cent of the university’s £8 million investment portfolio were in oil firms such as BP and Shell and miners Rio Tinto.

Similar calls were made by environmentalists in 2014 for the East Sussex Pension Fund, which manages pension contributions for Brighton and Hove City Council and East Sussex County Council, to end its then more than £80 million investment in energy and fracking companies.

The appeal fell on deaf ears with fund managers pointing to a requirement to seek the best investment for its members.

Ms Lucas said: “It’s great to see the University of Sussex pushing ahead with a forward thinking investment policy.

“Not only does the policy look to shift investment away from dirty fossil fuels but it also seeks to promote beneficial investment in community schemes, and firms with good employment practises.

“This change of policy is thanks to the incredible campaigning of students at Sussex, and the inspiring Sussex Fossil Free campaign.

“I hope that other public bodies, like Brighton and Hove City Council, follow in the university’s footsteps and make sure their investment policy is fit for the future.”

Abe Baldry, University of Sussex Students’ Union President, said: “Working with the university to change its investment policy was a key objective for the Students’ Union this year.

“It’s an area that many students feel passionately about and I’m extremely pleased and proud that we’ve reached this important decision.”

A University of Sussex spokeswoman said the newly-approved policy went “well beyond simple negative screening” and had the support of the Sussex Fossil Free campaign.

The university’s finance and investment committee will begin tendering for investment managers to execute the investment policy which is expected to come into force from August.