The perils and pitfalls of stepping out into the working world was the running theme at an event to mark the formal inauguration of one of Southampton’s most iconic buildings.

Invited guests to what was described as the formal opening of Southampton Solent University’s new Spark building, watched students perform their own drama examining in a humorous way the best and worst methods for getting that first foot on the employment ladder.

There to underscore the message that a determination to do your best and the necessity to focus on the smallest of details was the key to success in all aspects of business life, was guest of honour, BBC Dragon’s Den judge Theo Paphitis.

The multi-millionaire entrepreneur, who started working life as an assistant to the tea boy at 16, didn’t hold back in his responses to questions from guests on his thoughts on the EU, Brexit and politicians in general.

However, Theo said he had confidence that the UK would do well having left the EU if politicians were able to complete what he described as the most important negotiations since the rebuilding of the nation after the Second World War.

The university’s Vice Chancellor, Professor Graham Baldwin, described the multi-million pound Spark as an iconic resource for both the university and the city as a whole.

It’s striking red pod, suspended aloft in the Spark’s giant atrium, had already caused a stir, he told the audience, earning the nickname of “The baked Bean” from students.

The Vice Chancellor drew attention to the recent report from QS university ranking body which awarded Southampton Solent five stars for inclusivity and standards of teaching.

“We are immensely proud of the fact 70 per cent of our students are the first in their family to go to university,” said professor Baldwin.