HUDDERSFIELD University is turning to TV to help attract students.

Today it becomes the first university in Yorkshire to advertise on the box.

Bosses are spending £250,000 on a huge new publicity campaign, featuring Hollywood actor Patrick Stewart, who is Chancellor.

It is hoped the 64-year-old Star Trek star will persuade more young people to boldly go ... to Huddersfield.

He appears in the 30-second advert saying: "For courses that lead to careers, it all starts at the University of Huddersfield."

The letter H figures prominently as well as scenes from the university campus, the Lawrence Batley Theatre and the Galpharm Stadium.

The ad got its first screening at 10.10 this morning and runs for a week on Channel 4, YTV and E4 - around key programmes such as Emmerdale, The Bill, Heartbeat, Hollyoaks and news.

Two more week-long bursts of TV exposure will follow in October and January.

A-level students thinking about where to go next year and mature students, are both targeted.

There'll also be adverts on radio and on buses, plus direct mailing.

Phil Williams, head of public relations at the university, said: "We're well renowned locally but sometimes potential students from further afield hardly know we exist.

"We want to create mass awareness."

A decade ago 75% of new students came from at least 25 miles away. Now three quarters are from within that radius.

Mr Williams said: "That's a trend that's affected all universities, especially the former polys like us.

"The rising costs of studying mean students are staying closer to home."

A total of 3,000 new students will start this month, and numbers are up on the previous couple of years.

Mr Williams said: "We could do with maybe 200 more, and there is still chance for students to choose us through clearing."

Mr Stewart spent a day on campus in July filming the advert and recorded voice overs at a studio in Leeds.

Advertising agency Euro RSCG Riley handled the campaign, which has cost £30,000.

Airtime - 50 adverts in total - has pushed the total outlay up to £250,000. Mr Stewart did not charge for his time.

Twelve universities have already advertised on TV but Huddersfield will be the first in Yorkshire. Four in the North West have appeared on TV.

Mr Stewart's involvement as Chancellor has already led to an influx of extra interest from potential students in Japan, Malaysia, Korea and Thailand, where his cult status is huge.

University bosses sent him a get-well message after his recent surgery to widen an artery.

The advert directs people to a website, where there's an address from Mr Stewart and the chance to win an iPod.