Epigram 300

Page 1

University of Bristol Independent Student Newspaper


25th April 2016

Issue 300

Our 300th Issue Epigram: Fares Kammourieh

27 years and 300 issues later, we celebrate

Epigram’s history Page 19

Features Epigram chats to the former Archbishop of Epigram: Fares Kammourieh

Canterbury about Trump, Safe Spaces & more Richard Assheton

Page 6

Letters Sophie Hunter says thank you to Chancellor Baroness Hale

Gender defines pay grade among Bristol Uni staff Ben Parr Investigations Editor Over three quarters of the highest paid staff at the University of Bristol are male, the results of a Freedom of Information request have found. A headcount of staff in the ‘Grade M’ pay scale, the highest earning grade of pay, revealed that of the 468 staff members in this category, only 106 of them are female. The grade of pay for staff members is determined by their job title, with ‘Grade M’ being for senior

professional staff and professors, with salaries starting at £61,431 and rising to over £100,000. Caitlin Flint, President of the Bristol Feminist Society, said that these figures seem to suggest that there is a gender pay gap at the university due the higher number of men in the top grade of pay. Bristol SU’s Equality and Liberation Officer, Jamie Cross, said that the lack of women in the top grade of pay is reflective of an ‘attainment issue’ both within Bristol University specifically but also within the wider Higher Education sector. ‘Professors and other higher pay grade academic staff are predominantly men and this could be due

to the barriers that some women in academia face,’ Cross said. ‘A lot of senior professional staff come from academic backgrounds as well so that could be passed on from the problems faced in academia, although those figures are less easy to interpret.’ In an online Epigram survey about gender differences in tutorial participation, it was found that approximately a third of the respondents who are women claimed to feel ‘uncomfortable’ or ‘very uncomfortable’ speaking up in tutorials, compared with about 10 per cent of men.

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Flickr / University of Salford Press Office

Music Sam Mason-Jones talks Bieber, Scandanavia and cultural appropriation with Newton Faulkner Page 44

continued on page 3 flickr: Phil King

Epigram 25.04.2016

News Editorial

2 Editor: Sarah Newey

Deputy Editor: Adam Becket

Deputy Editor: Becki Murray




A note from the editor

Inside Epigram Comment 11 Referencing is Hard (Bristol: Epigram, 2016) Jordan Kelly-Linden argues that referencing is a minefield at university

Epigram is older than most Bristol students, which is a strange thought. This issue, we’re taking a rare look back, to celebrate all that we have achieved in the past 27 years, and look forward to our future. But one thing which has really been reinforced for me this issue is that we are simply custodians of a publication which existed long before we came on the scene and, hopefully, will continue to exist for many, many years to come. We face similar problems to those before us, have covered similar topics and feel a similar sense of pride in what we have achieved. We set the tone and quality for the years we are part of Epigram, but we are just a few of the people who have contributed to its impressive history - which is something we should be proud of. So make sure to have a read through our eight page celebratory supplement - as well as the rest of the paper, obviously. True to form, we have some great content which I hope you’ll enjoy. You’ll hear from me again on page 20.

Flickr/ Morten Oddvik

What’s On 36 300th Issue Time Travel Edition Ben Duncan-Duggal takes a look back at the biggest and best events in Bristol over the years

Joss Smithson

Film + TV 40 “It’s Goodnight From him” Jordan Baker looks back at the life and career of Ronnie Corbett

Interested in writing for Epigram? Join a Facebook group!

Epigram News 2015-2016 Epigram Features Contributors 2015-2016 Epigram Comment 2015-2016 Epigram Science and Tech 2015-2016 Epigram Letters 2015-2016 Epigram Living 2015-2016 Epigram Food 2015/2016 Writers

Epigram Travel Section 2015-2016 Epigram Style 2015-2016 Epigram Arts 2015-2016 Epigram Film & TV 2015-2016 Writers Epigram Music Writers 2015-2016 Epigram Sport Writers 2015-2016 Bristol Sports Reports for Epigram

Editorial team Editor Sarah Newey editor@epigram.org.uk

Flickr: Andrew Hall


Deputy Editors Adam Becket abecket@epigram.org.uk Becki Murray becki.murray@epigram.org.uk Online Editor Ciara Lally ciara.lally@epigram.org.uk Deputy Online Editors Hannah Price hannah.price@epigram.org.uk

48 Star of Varsity Jordan Hussell crowned inaugural Star of Varsity after inspiring UBMHC win


Features Editor Alex Green agreen.epigram@gmail.com Deputy Features Editor Becky Morton bmorton.epigram@gmail.com Features Online Editor Richard Assheton rassheton.epigram@gmail.com Comment Editor Jordan Kelly-Linden jkellylinden.epigram@gmail.com

Deputy Comment Editor Stefan Rollnick srollnick.epigram@gmail.com Comment Online Editor Liam Marchant lmarchant.epigram@gmail.com

Online Food Editors Becky Scott Issy Montgomery

Music Online Editor Sam Mason-Jones

Travel Editor Camilla Gash cgash.epigram@gmail.com

Film & TV Editor Ella Kemp ekemp.epigram@gmail.com

Deputy Travel Editor Ella Ennos-Dann eennosdann.epigram@gmail.com

Deputy Film & TV Editor Kate Wyver kwyver.epigram@gmail.com

Travel Online Editor Annabel Lindsay alindsay.epigram@gmail.com

Film & TV Online Editor Georgia O’Brien gobrien.epigram@gmail.com

Style Editor Plum Ayloff payloff.epigram@gmail.com

Sport Editor Marcus Price mprice.epigram@gmail.com

Deputy Style Editor Beatrice Murray-Nag

Deputy Sport Editor James O’Hara johara2.epigram@gmail.com


Style Online Editor

Editor Comment Editor Phoebe Jordan Science Sport Editor Online Editor Ed Henderson-Howat Science & Patrick Technology Editor styleonline@epigram.org.uk Tom Flynn Baker Nick CorkMalik Ouzia e.hendersonhowat@epigram.org.uk Alfie Smith editor@epigram.org.uk mouzia.epigram@gmail.com comment@epigram.org.uk science@epigram.org.uk

Facebook/ Capture Cre8 Photography

Deputy Editors Managing Director Jon Bauckham Rebecca Butler jon@epigram.org.uk rebecca.butler@epigram.org.uk Hannah Stubbs hannah@epigram.org.uk Director of Operations Ryan Furniss e2 Editor r.furniss@epigram.org.uk Matthew McCrory e2@epigram.org.uk News Editor

For the latest news, features and reviews

facebook.com/epigrampaper twitter.com/epigrampaper issuu.com/epigrampaper instagram/epigrampaper_ epigramfood epigram_travel epigramstyle


Deputy Style Online Editor Letters Editor Deputy Science Editor Julia Pritchard Puzzles Editors Deputy Science & Corfield Tech Suzie Brown Emma Emma Sackville Editor What’s On Editor Andrea Philippou letters@epigram.org.uk deputyscience@epigram.org Matt Davis Ben Duncan-Duggal mdavis.epigram@gmail.com Culture Editor bduncanduggal.epigram@gmail.com Sport Editor Webmaster

Calum Sherwood

Science & Tech Online Arts Editor culture@epigram.org.uk Amy Finch Mattie Brignal

Mihai-Alexandru Cristache Tom Burrows sport@epigram.org.uk

Chief Proofreaders Deputy Culture Editor Deputy Sport Editor mbrignal.epigram@gmail.com Guy Barlow Letters Editor Lucy Stewart Zoe Hutton David Stone Sophie Hunter Deputy Arts Editor deputyculture@epigram.org.uk deputysport@epigram.org.uk shunter.epigram@gmail.com Alice Young Ed Grimble Sub-editors Music Editor egrimble.epigram@gmail.com news@epigram.org.uk Puzzles Margot EditorTudor Deputy News Editor Living Editor Saskia Hume Nathan Comer Abbie Scott Lily Buckmaster Maria Murariu Will Soer Deputy News Editors Arts Online Editor music@epigram.org.uk ascott.epigram@gmail.com Esme Webb wilso.epigram@gmail.com Abigail Van-West Head Sub Editor Amy Stewart Kate Dickinson Deputy Music Editor astewart.epigram@gmail.com Sophie Milner avanwest@epigram.org.uk Emma Corfield Dalia Abu-Yassien Deputy Living Editor Ella Wills Pippa Shawley Jenny Awford Ellie Donnel Sub Editors Music Editor deputymusic@epigram.org.uk News Online Editors jawford@epigram.org.uk Business Team Harriet Layhe, Gunseli Yalcinkaya George Clarke Hannah Lewis Online Living Editor FIlm & TV Editor gyalcinkaya@epigram.org.uk Kate Moreton, Rosemary Wagg Features Editor gclarke.epigram@gmail.com Vlad Djuric Maya Colwell Will Ellis Johnny Battle Tristan Martin Illustrator Deputy Music Editors Mike Christensen filmandtv@epigram.org.uk Emily Faint features@epigram.org.uk Food Editor Sophie Van Berchem Sophie Sladen Caitlin Butler efaint.epigram@gmail.com Izzie Fernandes Katie Llewellyn Deputy Film & TVcbutler.epigram@gmail.com Editor Deputy Features Editor Alice Best Web Designer Anthony Adeane Investigations Rachel Prince Andrew WhiteEditor Deputy Food Editor Rob Mackenzie Alex Schulte Olivia Mason deputyfilmandtv@epigram.org.uk Ben Parr deputyfeatures@epigram.org.uk Tom Horton aschulte.epigram@gmail.com Ellie Sherrard bparr.epigram@gmail.com Sorcha Bradley News Editor sm.bradley.epigram@gmail.com


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Epigram 25.04.2016


@epigramnews Editor: Sorcha Bradley

Deputy Editors: Abbie Scott; Dalia Abu Yassien

Online Editors: Emily Faint; George Clarke



efaint@epigram.org.uk; gclarke@epigram.org.uk

‘The university does not give any help for people lacking in confidence’ Ben Parr Investigations Editor Flickr / Images Money

The gender pay gap is evident across academia

Continued from front page... Whilst the sample size was too small to be representative of the university as a whole, it does agree with what has been claimed on a national scale that men are more confident speaking up in academic settings. One respondent wrote: ‘The boys certainly speak up more without the worry of whether

or not they know anything about the topic at hand. I notice the girls hold back, even when I notice they have immaculate notes and clearly know the answer to the question asked.’ Another respondent said that the ‘university does not give any help for people lacking in confidence’. However, other respondents were more disparaging about the idea of gender having an effect on contributions to tutorials. One respondent said that they think it is more about self-confidence than gender, whereas another wrote: ‘some of the most prolific in-

seminar speakers I know are women.’ Caitlin Flint, President of Bristol’s Feminist Society commented: ‘This is not just a problem at UoB, nationally there is a problem with the fact that there are less women high up in academia than men, and in general more men in higher paid positions in the majority of professions. ‘I would hope that the university is doing what it can to decrease this obvious gender imbalance and will promote more of our fantastic women to the higher paid levels so as to get rid of this disparity.’

New Vice Chancellor claims far less than predecessor Ben Parr Investigations Editor The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Bristol, Professor Hugh Brady, has claimed nearly £4,000 less in expenses and earns a significantly smaller salary than his predecessor, Sir Eric Thomas. Sir Eric, who was Vice-Chancellor of the University of Bristol between 2001 and 2015 and ranked as one of the highest spending Vice-Chancellors in the UK, earnt a salary of more than £300,000 by the end of his time in the role. Professor Hugh Brady took over the role in 2015 and now has a salary of £275,000.

Professor Brady also appears to be claiming less on expenses. According to a Freedom of Information request, between August 2015 and February 2016, Professor Brady claimed a total of £739.60 mainly on business lunches and travel.

University of Bristol

Sir Eric claimed £4,707.22... almost entirely on business lunches and travel

During the same period the previous year, Sir Eric claimed £4,707.22, again, almost entirely on business lunches and travel. In just November of 2014 Sir Eric claimed £914.13 on business lunches, more than Professor Brady claimed during the entire seven month period. ‘The Vice-Chancellor’s expenses f luctuate depending on his schedule, and particularly overseas commitments that are part of the role,’ a spokesperson for the university said. According to a report by the University and Colleges Union (UCU) on UK ViceChancellor’s spending habits in 2014/15, Sir Eric was ranked the 12th highest claimant on air travel and the 3rd highest spender on hotel bills. A spokesman for the university also suggested Professor Brady has claimed less during this period as he has ‘been leading the university strategy development exercise over his first nine months as our new ViceChancellor, which has necessitated his spending a lot of time working within the university with staff and students. ‘This has been hugely valuable and has enabled Professor Brady to meet many staff and students and collaboratively develop an ambitious new strategy for our university. He is currently overseas and his commitments outside the university, both in the UK and overseas, are likely to increase as the strategy development process concludes.’

Vice Chancellor and President, Professor Hugh Brady

London protest: the people’s assembly Max Haskins News Reporter

After the recent revelations about the Panama Papers, one of our news reporters headed to London to take a look at the The People’s Assembly’s national demonstration for Health, Homes, Jobs and Education. At first look, a protest aimed at demonstrating cuts to all public services with appearances from movements against tax havens, Israel and the conflict in Syria seemed rather unfocused. However, Fiona Edwards, the head of the Student Assembly Against Austerity, quickly reassured me that this diversity amongst protesters represented unity. ‘We are facing a battle on many, many fronts… today’s demonstration provided a unique opportunity to join these movements together.’ It didn’t take long to see this unity in action. The event itself saw appearances from not

just the People’s Assembly but also other well known organisations such as Save Our Steel, Stop the War Coalition and the Socialist Workers working together. Students could also be seen out in full force battling against the cold weather. Rather than building a strong student bloc like previous protests, students could be seen supporting a diverse range of movements. Much of the LGBT+ and the feminist blocs were made up of students, with many other students marching with their parents in the steel and doctors’ sections of the march. The protest concluded in Trafalgar Square, where the tens of thousands of demonstrators waving ‘No Cuts’ banners rallied to hear their organisational leaders speak. Music blasted from several bicycles with speakers attached blaring out a mixture of jungle, dub and hiphop while dancers of all ages circled the DJs. Many arts related to anti-Tory movements could also be seen, with students and graduates forming small bands or dressing up as clowns

to entertain the protesters. No doubt was the Labour Party out in full force supporting this event. The Shadow Chancellor, John McDonell, could frequently be seen marching side by side with protestors for the first few hours before he took to the main stage alongside Diane Abbott. ‘When they come to academize our schools,’ McDonnell told the cheering crowd, ‘if the teachers wish to take industrial action, we will be with them in solidarity.’ Many speakers and protestors had also come out in protest against the recent Panama Papers scandal. Protesters held up placards with ‘Dodgy Dave’ written on them while notable speakers such as Unite’s General Secretary, Len McCluskey, wore a Panamanian hat while addressing the lively crowd. Speaking to some of the organisers from the Bristol People’s Assembly, apparently ticket sales for coaches to London ‘increased significantly’ after people saw world leaders coming under pressure over their tax affairs.

Whether it was trade union speakers or protesters boasting #JC4PM placards, support for Jeremy Corbyn was evident. Many of the student protestors I spoke to seemed to have shifted their support from either the Green Party or from previous political disenchantment. ‘Since the election, none of the other parties sem to have a coherent environmental plan,’ one student told me. Natalie Bennett did address the crowd on the main stage, however only to call for Cameron’s resignation rather than to reassure students and Corbynists that the Greens were still relevant. Whether the social unity or support for Jeremy Corbyn’s campaign that this demonstration showed will continue over the next few months remains to be seen. So far the government hasn’t made an official statement about the protest or whether the turnout figure of 150,000 protestors is accurate.Nevertheless, the recent scandal over the Panama Papers and fresh cuts to services seems to have given resurgence to the British protest movement.

Epigram 25.04.2016


George Clarke

Epigram scoops up multiple awards at SPA conference

Much food on sale throughout the university goes to waste

George Clarke Online News Editor There is currently no provision for the large amounts of food waste from the university’s on-site catering facilities to go to a charity or a foodbank once it reaches its sell by date. Despite the many awards Bristol’s Catering Operation has won for its ethical, local produce and sustainably sourced ingredients, the university does not currently work with any foodbank or charity in Bristol. ‘There is a consideration of whether we can work with a local food bank,’ the university has stated, but then went on to say that ‘we need to ensure that any company we engage with has the relevant safety measures in place to ensure that once taken off university premises, the food is handled safely and will not cause illness to any person.’ At present the university policy regarding stock control management is that, ‘should there be sandwiches or salads left in a café with that day’s “use by” date, the stock is transferred to a later opening outlet, who will use their discretion to reduce price.’ However the university also said that

‘there may be occasions when we do have sandwiches which haven’t sold and due to “use by” dates they do need to be put in to food waste composting.’ ‘I think it’s completely unacceptable that the university throws away unsold food, especially given it’s ‘ethical’ image,’ a third year sociology student told Epigram. ‘Surely it can’t be that hard to give the food to a foodbank.’ Use of foodbanks in Bristol has risen by 28 per cent in the last three years with over 10,000 emergency food packages handed out in the last year, just under half to children and with UK foodbank usage still at record level food waste is a pressing issue. The Trussell Trust, a charity that aims to bring communities together to end hunger and poverty in the UK operates 424 foodbanks in the UK and supplied 1,109,309 three-day emergency food packages in the 2015-16 financial year. The Bristol Skipchen ran a pop-up cafe in Stokes Croft in 2014, serving over 20,000 meals in eight months all from food fit for the bin. They are part of the Real Junk Food project that receives food destined for the bin from allotmants, restaurants, cafes, events and functions and turns it into meals in its ‘Pay As You Feel’ cafes adhering to all Environmental Health regulations.

Uni catering food waste doesn’t go to foodbanks

Malik Ouzia Online Sports Editor Epigram enjoyed a successful night at the Student Publication Association (SPA) awards in Loughborough. The paper won one award outright and also picked up two ‘highly commended’ finishes, including the runners-up spot in the evening’s biggest award for ‘Best Publication’. SPA is made up of student publications from across the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland and its prestigious awards form part of the annual national SPA conference, which took place at the University of Loughborough last weekend.

Epigram had one of the largest delegations in attendance, having been shortlisted in a host of categories.

Epigram began in spectacular fashion, winning the first award of the night for having the most articles featured in SPA’s weekly ‘Flash Friday’ round-up over the past year. They then narrowly missed out on retaining the award for ‘Best Use of Digital Media’ which they won last year, finishing second to Exepose, the University of Exeter’s publication. However, Epigram had to wait until the final

award of the night for undoubtedly their finest achievement, as they were runnersup in the ‘Best Publication’ category. Speaking on stage, deputy-editor Adam Becket was keen to praise the collective effort of the team; ‘there are 150 writers, almost 50 editors, a business team, so it’s a huge effort from everyone. ‘There are only eight of us standing on the stage so it’s a bit of a poor turnout really,’ he joked. In truth Epigram had one of the largest delegations in attendance, having been shortlisted in a host of categories. Investigations editor Ben Parr and deputy sport editor James O’Hara were both nominated for the ‘Best Reporter’ award, whilst Sorcha Bradley’s coverage of the Tokyo-World train breakdown was shortlisted for ‘Best News Story’. Sophie Hunter made the shortlist for ‘Best Feature’ for her piece on Bristol’s darker history and the Epigram Sport team were nominated for ‘Best Sports Coverage’ for their work throughout the year, including reporting on the recent Varsity series. Editor Sarah Newey was unable to attend but was singled out as ‘the brains behind the whole thing’ during Epigram’s acceptance speech and was understandably delighted at hearing the news. ‘It shows that hard work and a commitment to high quality, accurate journalism pays off,’ said Editor-in-Chief, Sarah Newey. ‘To be highly commended in “Best Publication,” in particular, is a huge honour. ‘I’m incredibly proud of what the team have achieved,’ she said. ‘Thank you to everyone who has contributed to the paper in the last year and made Epigram one of the most highly respected journalism outlets in the country.’

Tackling death at ‘Best of Bristol’ lectures Abbie Scott Deputy News Editor

Since death is the privation of sense experience, it is irrational to fear death.

However there are also numerous problems with this account. Firstly, it suggests that the death of a happy person is worse than the death of an unhappy person. There is the symmetry objection which suggests that by not being born earlier, we are also deprived of some goodness which seems strange. The deprivation account entails that pre and post natal nonexistence are equally bad, even if only one can be rationally feared as fear is future directed. Other lectures that were given as part of the series included ‘The art and beauty of pure maths’ with Dr. Lynne Walling and ‘God doesn’t play dice with the digital world’ with Dr. Nicolas Wu.


The Best of Bristol lectures took place this year on 11th to 15th April. The series showcases the best lectures of the year as chosen by students and this year’s series gathered more votes than ever before. The purpose of the series is to inspire students to take an interest in new subjects and appreciate the range of talented lecturers here at the university. The series is funded and supported by the Pro Vice-Chancellor for Education, Bristol SU and the Alumni Fund. On 14th April, Professor Havi Carel, head of the Philosophy department, spoke on the subject of, ‘Should I fear my own death?’. This lecture is part of the extremely popular Philosophy unit for second and third years, called ‘Death, Dying and Disease.’ In the lecture, Professor Carel called into question the rationality of fearing our own death. The philosopher Epicurus argues that fear is linked to negative sense experience, and since death is the privation of sense experience, it is irrational to fear death. Fearing the process of dying is understandable as it can involve painful sense experiences, but death itself involves no such thing. However, as always in Philosophy, Professor Carel provided many counterexamples to this argument. For example, some things are bad for us without causing us pain, such as a mosquito bite. It is also rational to fear things that will

cause harm, not to ourselves, but to those we love such as our children. An altered version of Epicurus’ argument shows that there are harms of deprivation as well as intrinsic harms. It can be argued that death is bad for someone because it deprives them of the goods of life: if they had not died, they would have continued living, which is better than death. This supports our intuitions that the death of a child is worse than the death of an elderly person.

The Epigram team at the SPA awards

Epigram 25.04.2016


Students call for higher state school intake Adam Becket and Malik Ouzia Deputy Editor and Online Sports Editor

How Epigram covered Bristol changing its admissions policy in 1999.

Flickr / woupa02

A poll on the Epigram website has shown that a majority of students think that ‘the University should do a better job of attracting state school students.’ 339 voters out of 620 (54 per cent) voted in favour of more state school students at Bristol, whilst only 145 (24 per cent) voted that they didn’t see a problem with current student numbers. A further 136 (22 per cent) voted that ‘the intake is fine but students need to make more of an effort to mix with others from different schooling backgrounds.’ This follows on from an Epigram investigation into an apparent state school/independent school split at the University. The University of Bristol has the second lowest proportion of state school students in England and Wales, leading to fears that a divide between private and state school students may be harming the University’s sense of community. Data published by the Higher Education Statistics Agency shows that in 2014/15 only 60.1 per cent of the intake for Bristol came from state schools, the second lowest after the University of Oxford. This means that the University has a lower intake of state school students than the University of Cambridge (61.8 per cent), Durham University (63.1 per cent) and the University of Exeter (68.0 per cent). Conversely, Bristol’s other university, the University of the West of England, boasts a state school intake of almost 95 per cent, whilst Queen Mary London has the highest proportion of any English Russell Group member with 87.9 per cent. The University also has the most private school students of any university in the UK. These statistics come out at the same time as a study published by Times Higher Education, ranking the University of Bristol 47th for student experience. The Student Experience Survey gave the University a score of 78.3, the worst score of which was 5.9 in ‘Good Community Atmosphere’. Figures obtained by Epigram through a Freedom of Information request show that in the five year period between 2010-2015, only a quarter of applicants come from independent schools, yet over a third of the eventual intake were privately educated. The University claim that research shows that ‘state school students are less likely to achieve their predicted grades and meet the terms of their offers.’

Hannah Dualeh, Bristol Students’ Union’s Widening Participation Officer, told Epigram ‘to ensure that our state school student intake is consistent and doesn’t fluctuate each academic year, we should have not only have a state school target, but a quota number.’ ‘I think the university needs to do more to attract and encourage students to apply who aren’t from the South East or a big boarding school,’ commented Sarah, a 3rd year history student. Further statistics from the FOI show that a private/state school divide exists, with the majority of privately educated students choosing to live in the same accommodation. Stoke Bishop accommodates less than half of first year students, yet close to 70 per cent of the private school population choose to live there. The majority of these students inhabit catered halls in Stoke Bishop; Wills, Hiatt-Baker, Badock and Churchill, with all four boasting a privately educated majority. At Stoke Bishop, 45 per cent of residents are from independent schools, compared with less than 20 per cent of students living elsewhere. ‘Our four catered residences in Stoke Bishop have historically received higher levels of applicants from independent schools than the three self-catered residences in Stoke Bishop and in other areas,’ a spokesperson for the university said. ‘In 2015, 64 per cent of applications to catered residences in Stoke Bishop were from independent schools whereas just 20 per cent of applicants to self-catered halls in Stoke Bishop were from these schools. ‘Students’ preference of accommodation type remains a key driver of the allocation process but we will continue to make efforts to support more balanced communities as far as we are able.’ Barnaby Bossom, a 2nd year Spanish student and ex-Wills resident, came to Bristol from Eton. ‘I think there is a divide because private school kids turn up and the easiest connection to make with people is through schooling,’ he told Epigram. ‘It’s a shame, but I feel it’s the same with state schooling.’ Another old Etonian, who asked to remain anonymous, echoed Bossom’s thoughts. ‘It’s so easy to stick with what you know and that familiarity comes with knowing people from your school and others from similar independent schools.’ Yet one current fresher, who again wished to remain anonymous, felt that Bristol’s diversity problems run deeper than a simple private/ school divide. ‘You notice that a lot of people are from private schools, and a lot of the most prestigious ones too. But then I think that most of the state school people are pretty upper/middle class anyway.’

‘The university needs to do more to attract and encourage students to apply who aren’t from the South East or a big boarding school.’

The university has the most private school students of any university in the UK.


They do offer contextualised offers to students from schools perceived to be ‘low performing’, but explicitly say that they do not take ‘socioeconomic background’ or the ‘type of school attended by the applicant’ into consideration. A spokesperson for the University said: ‘While there is still more work to be done and challenges to overcome, we are making significant progress and have seen the number of state school students increase in the past four years. Latest application figures show an increase in state school applications of 2 per cent on the previous year and a 2.9 per cent increase in applications from low performing schools and colleges. ‘We welcome able students from all backgrounds and have an extensive and well-established programme of activities, targeting schools whose students don’t have a strong tradition of applying to universities like Bristol.’

Churchill Hall, where 64% of this year residents came from independent schools.





Editor: Alex Green

Deputy Editor: Becky Morton

Online Editor: Richard Assheton




Former Archbishop on Trump, Safe Spaces and the Royal Wedding Richard Assheton and Edward Henderson-Howat Online Features Editor & Online Deputy Editor

A stoical figure - Doctor Williams peruses Epigram

needs facing.’ …and on the Boycott Israel Campaign: ‘I’m not myself in favour of wholesale BDS [Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions] agenda, for a number of reasons. I, as Chair of Christian Aid, would say that I’m keen that we should have labelling of goods from Western territories, that settlement produce should be identified… ‘The fact that there’s horrendous suffering and cost imposed on one community isn’t a reason for demonising the other community as a whole, or going back to the whole pattern of thinking of collective Jewish guilt in the way that Christians have often done over the centuries.’ He also spoke briefly about the Prevent Strategy. ‘There’s a balance between the reasonable protection of students from real offence … and student bodies infantilising one another

Epigram/Edward Henderson-Howat

The Reverend in full flow

Epigram/Richard Assheton

He conducted one of the highest profile weddings of all-time. He worked with the Queen, politicians and religious leaders from around the world. He was the 104th Archbishop of Canterbury. However, at the end of last term the Rt Rev Dr Rowan Williams trumped all these achievements and came back to Bristol, the place where he once lectured and in his own flattering words, a “very distinguished university.’ Before delivering a talk in the Great Hall of Wills Memorial Building, he took the time to speak to Epigram on all things international, student and personal. Softly spoken, meticulous and fluent, Williams came across as a man of quiet grace and human dignity. On refugees he had this to say: ‘I think there’s probably more we can do in this country when I think of the proportion of refugees in some other countries who are not necessarily so well placed… ‘The crisis in the region is so colossal, there is no short simple answer. Sending people back to chaos and probably death doesn’t seem a reasonable solution. ‘We have to work harder at it, as a country, as a continent. ‘Given the risk and the expense, I don’t think people take the decision lightly to migrate.’ When Epigram asked about the Pope’s recent comments on Donald Trump’s Christianity, Williams said, ‘I wanted to stand and cheer! ‘Donald Trump’s Christian credentials do seem to be a little bit — slender. He’s apparently said that he has never had to ask forgiveness of God for anything which is, if true, enviable… ‘I’ve no idea what his personal

convictions are, I think the Pope was saying somebody who makes that kind of slogan a plank in their campaign has got some very difficult questions to answer from the Christian point of view. That’s fine by me. ‘He’s campaigning on ‘dog-whistles,’ that is on crowd-pleasing slogans. I can’t see that any of this will happen if by some extraordinary chance he becomes president. ‘But at the moment it just feeds into a narrative of panic, paranoia and, as we’ve seen in the last few days, a sort of violence found below the surface… ‘He’s taken seriously by lots of people. He’s not funny, as it were! ‘What worries me is how a huge complex society like the United States copes with the fact that a large proportion of their population are seriously alienated from the mainstream political process. Whether it is people looking to Bernie Sanders or people looking to Donald Trump. ‘What [also worries me is what] the main-stream parties and institutions do about it, because I think it is a really critical situation for American politics.’ On ‘poisonous’ anti-Semitism in university campuses Doctor Williams said: ‘I’ve got a reasonable record of being critical of the government of Israel in many respects… ‘But some people will unfortunately use the difficulties with Israel’s behaviour as an excuse for unleashing what does seem to me, completely indefensible, straightforward, anti-Semitic, bilious, hateful stuff. ‘People who say ‘Hitler had a point,’ well, they haven’t got a point. ‘I think the policy of minimal tolerance of this in university circles is essential. ‘We’ve been there, we know what antisemitism is. It is a reality… There are Jewish students who are feeling really intimidated because of cyber bullying, you know, chronic bullying. It’s a fact and a very uncomfortable one but it

[saying] ‘Oh no, you’re too delicate to cope with this.’ ‘So I think we just need to listen very hard to the specifics here, and always ask the question, ‘Are we … muffling a real exchange of legitimate opinion? Or are we rightly identifying views that are not only unacceptable but damagingly unacceptable? ‘It’s not easy but I think the Prevent Strategy risks overkill, it gives to universities the task of policing conversations and discussions which I think universities should have. They exist in a sense to have un-policed discussions — that’s the whole point of higher education I think…I do worry about it.’ He describes his role in the Royal Wedding as ‘the one thing I’ll be remembered for!’ ‘I’ve said to people before,’ he contines, ‘I’ve done weddings, this was a very big one. I thoroughly enjoyed it. ‘When you’re actually there, doing it, you’re not conscious of the millions of people watching, you just get on with it. ‘No nerves?!’ ‘Well I guess there might have been a few quivers.’ With degrees from Oxford and Cambridge, Williams knows what it is to be facing finals and having to enter the real world. ‘There’s no such thing as the real world! The world is as real as you make it wherever you are. ‘Graduates? I think, the one piece of advice I want to say is, you’ve been taught to ask questions. Don’t stop.’ Williams spoke to a packed Wills Memorial Building during the latter half of the evening. For those who missed his main presentation, his address on Theology and Meditation was complex, focussing on ‘one particularly interesting period in the history of early Christian writing and thought from roughly 500-700 AD.’ However, from it he offered a number

of important and relatable messages. He argued that there are ‘ways of talking about God that are not only stupid but actually quite damaging.’ Theology, in his eyes, can be defined as a ‘search for the least stupid things you can say about God.’ He spoke plainly of our ‘mperfect and conflict ridden world’ and how ‘we see the wreckage we make of our environment, we see the wreckage we make of our relationships – individually and internationally.’

“ We see the world not just in terms of our own egos and our wants but in terms of what is actually there.

He argued that we ‘shouldn’t treat the world as a child in a sweet shop’ but should strive to ‘see our world not just in terms of our own egos and our wants but in terms of what is actually there.’ His concluding point was ‘that when the skies are dark and the weather looks unpromising … we look east in winter even though sunrise seems to be very slow and very late but we do know where it comes … [we can] look east in winter and find some hope there.’ There was also a response from the University’s Rupert Gethin, a scholar and practitioner of Buddhist meditation. A number of interesting similarities were drawn between the religions. As our host for the evening, Professor Gavin D’Costa, said, the former Archbishop’s new title of Lord Williams of Oystermouth, is fitting for a man with such pearls of wisdom. He is not wrong. Williams carried an inspiring presence. We thank him for his words and time.




From the frontline: the Junior Doctors’ strike Imogen Thomas Features Writer

“ ‘The Junior Doctors’ struggle is one which absolutely has to be won.’

‘I think it’s important to remember that if the junior doctors give in, everyone else will be under attack before long – nurses, paramedics et cetera. ‘It’s difficult to find reliable information about the contracts,

Epigram/Imogen Thomas

The public comes together to protest recent contract changes

even as a medical student. I’ve found that the best thing to do is go to the picket lines and have a discussion with one of the doctors.’ Often spotted at picket lines with megaphone in hand is Jack Hazeldine, activist and organiser for Bristol People’s Assembly. I caught up with him on his way to London for the National Demonstration for Health, Homes, Jobs and Education. ‘The Junior Doctors’ struggle is one which absolutely has to be won,’ he said. ‘Doctors are currently the front line of the Tory government’s attack on workers’ conditions: cutting unsocial hours pay, pushing back safety measures, stretching staff to the limit and going backwards on gender equality.’ Going backwards on gender equality: new contracts are set to hit women hardest.

Epigram/Imogen Thomas

Is the first ever full walk-out by junior doctors on the horizon? It looks like it. Strike action by the junior doctors is set to intensify after the government again refused talks to negotiate the new contracts Jeremy Hunt plans to impose on NHS junior doctors. For the first time in NHS history, a full walk-out is scheduled. From 26th to 27th of April, there will be no emergency cover by junior doctors. I spoke to Eleanor Wright, a third year Medical student on placement at the Bristol Royal Infirmary to find out how the strikes are affecting her. “The day the government announced that the contract would

be forced through, placement was kind of eerie. Everyone was feeling so disheartened,’ she said. ‘At this point I’m more worried about the effect that the contract will have on the future of the NHS than my career.

A survey conducted for the Health Service Journal found that the British public overwhelmingly blame Jeremy Hunt for the strike and its consequences. Jack agrees. ‘Let’s be clear, it is Jeremy Hunt and the government who are to blame for the NHS crisis, the grievances of doctors, and the impacts of the strike, after imposing a #NotSafeNotFair contract and refusing to negotiate at all with doctors.’

” Strength comes in numbers, then, and with a 98 per cent mandate for strike action the BMA is in a strong position on that front.

The British Medical Association warns that, though contract law stipulates that a contract needs to be agreed on both sides, the government could effectively force employees to sign contracts by legally terminating

their contracts and reemploying them on new terms. Doctors could essentially be faced with a choice between accepting new contracts and losing their jobs. For this reason, Gareth Williams, a Senior Solicitor with the BMA, stresses the importance of as many employees taking strike action as possible, since cherry picking who to dismiss would be illegal. He also suggests that mass resignation could be an option, or that the BMA could lawfully recommend that doctors do not accept the contract. Strength comes in numbers, then, and with a 98 per cent mandate for strike action the BMA is in a strong position on that front. Jack Hazeldine also stresses the importance of unilateral opposition, calling for ‘huge, sustained popular resistance’ to threats of contract imposition. As it stands, it could go either way. The government is not backing down, but the strikes are gaining momentum. The next few weeks will be critical.

Swipe left for tales of trouble, Tinder and illicit encounters Bea Gentilli Features Writer

Epigram/Bea Gentillli

Those lonely, cold winters - a notoriously difficult time for students lacking central heating, hearty meals and tragically, their other half. Mbargos has got tiresome; Lola Lo’s isn’t working for you anymore; Lakota is full of crazed first years with no cheeks left; and dissertation deadlines have become a savage reality. So where are students turning to find love? Since the invention of Tinder, Bumble, Grindr and other cyber-based gismos it seems students are conquering their quests to find their Tinderellas and Prince Charmings with comparative ease compared to previous student generations. But can a ‘swipe left’ or ‘swipe right’ really change your life? After a couple of hours interviewing students on either their most debauched or their most successful Tinder experiences, it seems apparent that Tinder’s primary utility is providing easy, attainable and instant sex. Out of 25 single and ready to mingle interviewees, 65 per cent used it for casual hook-ups alone, 25 per cent in the genuine hope of finding that special person and 10 per cent admitted they viewed the app as a game to swipe

people and have a giggle getting into odd conversations with people they never intend on meeting. However, one such individual changed my mind. He-who-must-not-benamed told me how he met his current girlfriend through Tinder: a fellow Bristol University student. He informed Epigram that sinking at least three ciders previous to any Tinder date is a routine must: ‘It cools the nerves and gives you that needed liquid courage to either make or break the date.’ They met at the infamous Brass Pig and after a glass of red, conversation flowed and seemingly like Rihanna, ‘they found love in a hopeless place.’ Yet Tinder is not just a playground for straight relationships. Quite frankly the funniest and most successful story came from one such individual who uses Tinder for what he describes as ‘strictly casual encounters’ with men. So how does one do Gay Tinder? Pretty easily it seems. This other He-Who-ShallNot-Be-Named is committed to Tinder and Grindr as easy ways to meet men who are local and available in Bristol, Manchester or any other city he visits. He told Epigram, ‘It’s necessary in this day and age, otherwise sometimes you are literally punting in the dark trying

to work out whether someone is actually gay or just effeminate.’ Whilst this student in question has actually found ‘something-close-tolove’ through Tinder, he has also had a number of other experiences. He has bumped into a match randomly in Manchester with whom he had matched with months before. He has also fulfilled a man’s request to be ‘financially raped’. This probably needs explaining as it proves by far to be the most entertaining and eccentric of his tales. Boredom on a Saturday afternoon in London drove him to ‘get up on his Tinds,’ swiping through potentials in preparation of the evening ahead when one such individual caught his eye. On Tinder, some people use their blurbs to provide information about themselves to theoretically sway a potential Tinderella on the prowl. Mainly, they categorise the person’s main interests or provide some cheap humour such as ‘I tinder be a nice guy and great at making puns.’ But this one was different. It said plainly, ‘I am looking for a white male to financially rape me and use me as a footstall.’ Personally, I am not sure they would

get my Superlike but, characteristically, said individual saw this as an idyllic moment to have some fun with some friends in the hubbub that is North London. So he planted the first message, and sat back to wait for a response. Helped by the speed and efficiency of the internet, within 10 minutes, plans were created and all was agreed to financially rape this man in a bar in Camden. He-who-must-not-be-named donned his disguise and went to meet the individual, with his two best mates sitting at the other end of the bar. All this man wanted was to quite literally have his credit card abused by a ‘white male’ and after spending over £200 on drinks for the three of them was quite chuffed with how his Saturday date night had gone. Humans really are a varied bunch. Research in the last month has uncovered that there are now more than 50 million Tinder users, so the possibilities at the click on the button really do prove endless. Tinder has created nine billion matches to date, swiping in over 150 countries and 30 different languages. So whatever your ideal other half, you’ll be sure to find them eventually.




The Pursuit of Happiness Becky Morton Deputy Features Editor

In a consumer age, the index challenges the idea that happiness comes from the mere accumulation of material possessions, arguing that human relationships, supportive and active communities and the long-term quality of our environment are more important. The 2015 pilot study in Bristol found that factors such as close personal relationships, social interactions and community belonging have the greatest positive impact on wellbeing, whilst the positive impact of a medium or high income on overall wellbeing is negligible. Crucially, Happy City sees happiness as interdependent; an individual’s happiness is limited if their community is

Happy City

“ Socially isolated individuals are more likely to suffer from mental and physical health problems

Thena Mimmack

What is the best way to measure the success of a society? Economic development? Employment rates? Standard of education? Bristol-based charity, Happy City, argues that above all policy-makers should focus on happiness. Founded by Mike and Liz Zeildler in2010,theorganisation has formulated a ‘Happy City Index’, the world’s first citywide measure of happiness and wellbeing. The index aims to use alternate measures to Gross Domestic Product (GDP), the traditional model used by statisticians and policy makers, arguing that economic growth ‘has become the end in itself,’ to the detriment of personal happiness, the environment, our health and our communities.

discontented and disengaged. For example, their research shows that socially isolated individuals are more likely to suffer from mental and physical health problems. Alongside traditional ‘drivers’ of well-being such as economy, education, health, culture and environment, the researchers at Happy City have also identified the need for a sense of belonging, meaning and purpose. There has been a growing interest in alternative measures of progress at a national and international level. In 2010, the UN published its first ‘World Happiness Report’, which ranks 156 countries according to the ‘wellbeing’ of their citizens. This year’s rankings were topped by Finland, with the US ranked just 13th despite having the highest GDP of any country in the world. In 2010 the UK launched a National Wellbeing Programme which aimed to ‘start measuring our progress as a country, not just by how our economy is growing, but by how our lives are improving’. Despite this growing interest at a national and international level, Happy City noted there was little action at a community and city scale. In 2015 they piloted a prototype of the Index in Bristol in partnership with Bristol City Council, the University of Bristol and a number of community organisations. On 26th April, the index launched on a citywide scale. The city seems fertile ground for the project to grow given Bristol’s history of challenging the status quo and its strong emphasis on community action. As the former European Green Capital, the city also has a recognised awareness of the importance of sustainability. The index aims to engage individuals by enabling them to measure their own well-being and find simple and low-cost ways to make improvements, through an online survey. As well as providing users with a comprehensive measure of

Happy City co-founders, Mike and Liz Zeilder

their well-being, the survey also provides feedback and advice. Through this method the Index aims to bring benefits at all levels. Individuals will learn how to boost their own wellbeing, whilst communities and organisations can use the survey to highlight the strengths and weaknesses of their work. For policy-makers, the data can be used to understand how best to promote wellbeing by highlighting areas which have a positive effect and where resources should be focused. ‘What really excites me about the Happy City Index project is that it aims to support change at three different levels,’ explains co-founder, Liz Zeilder. ‘For me, the triple win-win-win is worth the many years of work from our small team, volunteers and supporters across Bristol and well beyond.’ The survey can also be used by community organisations, workplaces and other bodies such as schools, hospitals and universities, as tailored modules can be added to measure

Happy City

specific factors. On 18th April Happy City launched its Happy University Index with the University of Bristol, coinciding with the Students’ Union’s Mind Your Head Month. The ‘Happiness Pulse’ is an online survey designed to help the university understand and support student wellbeing as well as giving feedback to students on how to improve their own wellbeing. The data will be used by the university to identify trends and inform wellbeing related activities. The Happy University Index is part of the wider Happy City Index which launched on 26th April and is also open to students. The index seems to be particularly pertinent for the University of Bristol which consistently ranks poorly for student satisfaction. Last year Bristol came just 106th out of 160 universities in the National Student Survey, which asks final-year undergraduates to rate teaching, feedback, academic support, resources and personal development as well as overall satisfaction. The Times Higher Education Student Experience Survey recently ranked the University 47th out of 117 universities, with the lowest score being for ‘Good Community Atmosphere’. The index’s emphasis on a sense of belonging and engagement in a community as facilitating wellbeing could shed light on ways to improve the University of Bristol’s perceived lack of ‘community spirit’. At university it is easy to get overwhelmed by workload and the pressure to succeed, to the detriment of personal happiness. Mental health is a growing problem amongst students and resources are stretched. University

counselling services are facing an annual rise in demand of around 10 per cent and students can wait months for one-to-one counselling. The survey data could be used to identify what factors are affecting student well-being, informing the policy decisions of universities to improve the support available to students.

” The Index seems to be particularly pertinent for the University of Bristol which consistently ranks poorly for student satisfaction

The index also provides feedback to participants to help understand their own wellbeing and take steps to improve their happiness. Such feedback could facilitate self care and prevent so many students from needing to access mental health services. The interactive nature of the survey distinguishes it from other initiatives such as the National Student Survey (NSS). Jack Enright, a student at the University of Bristol who is an intern at Happy City, highlights that: ‘With the NSS, you just fill in their form and your answers disappear into the ether, never to be seen again. You don’t receive any feedback. The index is very good at visualising your wellbeing for you, showing you aspects of your life that are contributing to your happiness and the areas that are taking away from it. The index isn’t

just a survey, it’s also a tool for addressing the problem it measures.’ Another short-coming of the NSS is that the survey is used by national newspapers compiling their university league tables. As such, some students completing the survey are reluctant to criticise the university as this could pull it down the league tables and damage the reputation of their degree. By contrast, the Happy University Index will be less tied to national rankings, allowing students to freely express their opinions. It remains, however, an independent survey, and so questions would not be biased towards the university’s strengths. In a world threatened by environmental devastation, where individuals feel increasingly disconnected and disillusioned, the idea that a successful society can be judged by its levels of consumption and economic development seems to be flawed. The Happy City initiative is taking a significant step to show that happiness cannot be built on solely on this basis. The project may have begun small but it has big ambitions, with plans to expand into other cities across the UK next year. Yet Liz highlights how the central aims of the project remain focused on the individual: ‘If we can help individuals of all backgrounds and ages, to better understand their wellbeing, and feel more ability to influence their happiness and resilience, that is an incredible achievement.’ To take your Happiness Pulse visit: http://www.bristol.ac.uk/ students/services/mental-health/ happiness-pulse/


Epigram 25.04.2016

@epigramcomment Editor: Jordan Kelly-Linden Deputy Editor: Stefan Rollnick Online Editor: Liam Marchant jkellylinden@epigram.org.uk



The 93% Club: Will it unite or divide? An ex-state school pupil, Claire Hargreaves argues that The 93% Club may not have the positive effects people are hoping for

Claire Hargreaves Comment writer

EPIGRAM’s Deputy Editor Adam Becket embarrasses the paper at the Student Publication Awards Whilst Epigram was largely praised for its huge success at the Student Publication Awards, there was a certain degree of controversy over the behaviour of its drunken Deputy Wikimedia commons

Do public school ‘cliques’ persist in our University? Tweet @ClareHargreaves97 with your thoughts

to negate the differences in experiences that state school and private school students have had. But to conquer those differences, it is surely not helpful to exaggerate them in the form of The 93% Club. A second year student commented, ‘if The 93% Club can provide a platform for debates and political campaigns around social inequality… then that should obviously be championed,’ but expressed concerns that ‘it depends on how the society is named, advertised and how it behaves,’ suggesting

I can honestly say that I do not feel disadvantaged, nor do I feel the need for a body to represent me

the name might have ‘been chosen deliberately in reference to groups like the Bullingdon Club.’ However, efforts must be made to promote greater cohesion between state school students and private school students, and the intentions of The 93% Club’s founders are, in that sense, praiseworthy.


In the form of discussion, debate and campaigning, The 93% Club – a new group formed by University of Bristol students – is aiming to break down the barrier between state school and private school students. It wants state school students to share their experiences and opinions and to enable ‘students from disadvantaged backgrounds to have the same positive experience at UoB.’ But can it really achieve this goal, by dividing rather than uniting and by recognising differences rather than similarities? Will The 93% Club only serve to drive a greater wedge between state educated students and their privately educated counterparts? The project’s name comes from the statistic that 93 per cent of British students were state educated, whereas, only 60.1 per cent of UoB students went to state school. This makes our university the second worst in the country in terms of state school intake, behind Oxford. The statistics are shocking and they underpin the sense of exclusivity that sometimes feels present here. With the disproportionate number of state school students at UoB, it is clear that there needs to at least be a forum for discussion, to give state educated students a voice. But I question whether a campaign, which may become a society, is really the way to make greater debate to happen. Does The 93% Club’s unique selling point – being a community for state school students to campaign, discuss and socialise – paradoxically divide, rather than unite UoB students? It might shine too strong a light on state educated students’ so-called ‘disadvantages’ and the privately educated students’ ‘privileges’, exacerbating their differences. I went to both a state primary and secondary school and I can honestly say that I do not feel disadvantaged, nor do I feel the need for a body to represent me. I do not believe that going to a state school is synonymous with being from a ‘disadvantaged educational background.’ In fact, many state educated students can attest to the positive, enriching experiences they had at state school, although possibly in different ways to private school students. Of course, this is anecdotal and it is important not

The Slam

There is, as The 93% Club point out, a strong need to reach out to state schools to encourage a greater intake to our university from that demographic. In fact, a recent poll carried out by Epigram revealed that 54 per cent of students think the university should do a better job of attracting state school students. UoB does currently run Access to Bristol and summer schools, among other initiatives, for students from disadvantaged backgrounds. But it is clear that more needs to be done to attract a greater number of state school students to apply. On their Facebook page, The 93% Club founders state the aim of their campaign: ‘this group wants to help break down the divide between state and private school students and ensure that students from disadvantaged educational backgrounds have the same positive experience at UoB.’ While we do need a larger platform for discussion on this subject, can The 93% Club really achieve more cohesion between state and private school students? I’m not sure. It shouldn’t be ‘state school students vs. private school students,’ but ‘Bristol students’ united together, and The 93% Club arguably undermines this sense of collectivity towards which we surely aspire towards.

Editor, Adam Becket. The controversy began when he booed his own Online Editors off the stage, shouting “You are hashtag shit!!” and then projectile vomited into their unguarded wine glasses. After being called to the stage himself, Mr Becket demanded to be carried to the stage by the rest of the Epigram contingent, promising all those who helped a spot on next year’s Senior Editorial team. Just when everybody thought there was nothing more Mr Becket could do to embarrass himself, he proved them wrong by grabbing the microphone off fellow Deputy Editor Becki Murray and screaming “Big beats are the best, get high all the time”, before dramatically dropping the mic and storming off stage. Mr Becket has refused to comment.

Caption competition: The Panama Papers This week, Epigram is marking its 300th issue with some offshore investment-FUN! Let’s take a closer look at what these politicians are really thinking...

Wikimedia commons

Wikimedia commons




Think you can do better? Don’t hide your ideas! Send your best captions to @EpigramComment and we’ll be posting our favourites online!


12 10


Is the future bleak for our favourite NOS man outside ‘Bargs?

Theresa May has tried to take all the fun out of Lakota and Hope Carpenter isn’t happy about it Hope Carpenter Comment Writer

The bill bans formerly legal recreational drugs which contain similar ingredients to cocaine, cannabis and ecstasy. Substances now outlawed include Nitrous Oxide (laughing gas), Amyl Nitrate (poppers) and other ever-evolving compounds sold online, with clever pseudonyms like ‘research chemicals,’ which have previously allowed them to slip through legal loop-holes. There are slightly different reasons why criminalising each of these chemicals is a bad idea. Firstly, it is not that Theresa May has actually taken our NOS away, she’s just pushed it to the back-streets. Free from monitoring standards and age restrictions, the NOS market will become ripe with opportunities for adulteration. According to a recent Epigram survey of Bristol Students, 93 per

Can the government, therefore, really claim that the PSA is there to protect the public when evidence from other countries suggests that it will have the opposite effect?

Creative Commons / GreenZeb

The passing of last week’s Psychoactive Substances Act (PSA) is set to put producers and sellers of legal highs out of pocket; it could even put them behind bars. Picture the scene: policecars stalking the Triangle; police-raids replacing Stoke Bishop security shut-downs of postmidnight pres; the innocent hosts of Redland’s sickest house parties carted off to Bristol County Jail. Hard to imagine I know… I personally don’t agree with the Home Secretary’s crack down on recreational drugs, and it’s not because I’m a massive legend, I promise. So here’s a few reasons why I disapprove of the total prohibition of legal highs:

Are you as distraught as Hope that May is trying to make sure that NOS canisters are no longer be a staple of your Friday night out?

cent of legal high users expect to continue usage post-criminalisation. Clearly then, taking NOS is a lifestyle choice, one which prohibition is not likely to change. So forcing the distribution of canisters underground isn’t likely to help anyone. Of course, there is no disputing the fact that legal highs can be harmful and, in some cases, fatal. According to FRANK, nitrous oxide can cause unconsciousness and even death from oxygen starvation. In 2014, 18 deaths in England and Wales were linked to legal highs. While these are certainly bleak statistics, it’s worth noting that a similar measure, like May’s PSA, enforced in Ireland in 2010, ended up pushing 25 per cent more teens into what is now a more dangerous, under-ground criminal space. Can the government, therefore, really claim that the PSA is there to protect the public when evidence from other countries suggests that it will have the opposite effect? Charities, government advisory committees (the home affairs select committee included) and MPs alike have also pointed out the potential discriminatory effects of this act. ‘Poppers’ have made their way on to the list. The formally legal recreational drug, is used by an overwhelming proportion of the gay community.

The most vocal critic of this side of the PSA has been Conservative MP, and self-professed user, Crispin Blunt. Blunt was outraged by the government’s decision to include ‘poppers’ in the bill. Others had a similar reaction and rumour has it that the Home Counties MPs were shocked to find out they weren’t, in fact, debating the inclusion of those small streamers set off at parties…

....it is easy to see how the ambiguous nature of this bill might get out of hand.

These drugs have apparently been used for decades by the MSM (men who have sex with men) scene. The concern which Blunt and others - including the Gay Men’s Health Collective express is that if poppers are banned and are not easily available, users might switch to ‘sex chem’ alternatives. Often chem sex includes a cocktail of Class A drugs - much more dangerous and

arguably more likely to lead to an increased risk of STI transmission. The final category of drugs this crazy measure prohibits is a collection of over 500 various substances sold online and in some ‘head’ shops. In am attempt to cover every possibility, the legal language is so ambiguous here, that any substance with a psychoactive effect (i.e. a mental reaction) is encompassed by it. Although there are food and medical exemptions, it is easy to see how the ambiguous nature of this bill might get out of hand. I wonder if it will get to the point where even the Lynx brand will have to change their advertising strategy? After all, their deodorant can, apparently, have a psychoactive effect on some girls… So, while this absurd act certainly seems to have covered it all, is the future all that bleak for our favourite NOS man outside ‘Bargs and the BNOC throwing the next Redland rave? Michael Linnell, founder of DrugWatch, doesn’t think so: “It’s important to remember it’s a market, so for a lot of people it doesn’t really matter whether it’s illegal or not,” he said.“It’s a matter of if it’s desirable and whether they can get hold of it.” Guess the government will have to try harder to take our NOS then…

Parties in greenhouses shouldn’t throw stones After the Green Party’s party political broadcast, Ed Fernyhough turns the spotlight back on them The Green Party’s political broadcast released on April 6th picks up on the childish picture of UK politics recently reflected by various sources. First we have the leak of a list ‘ranking Labour MPs by their hostility to Jeremy Corbyn.’ Then we have the transparent and unsavoury heckling and filibustering that has recently become an unfortunate custom in the Commons. We also have the rather more translucent people politics constituting the lead up to London’s mayoral election taking place on May 5th, and more distantly, candidacy for future leadership of the Conservative party – irritatingly, the press have a preference for impression before information, lest the people exercise their democratic right with rigour.

observation and they might have humorously depicted a notion many of us have thought ourselves, but simply recognising the often frustrating triviality of political involvement is not equivalent to political solutions. We may hope that the Greens are aware of their ironic trivialisation of matters serious to many people, notwithstanding the tongue-in-cheek tone of their video; issues central to Green policy including Trident, migration and fracking frame their witty jibes and remarks. We see a young Theresa May repelling “a few

non-EU citizens” for lacking wealth, a group of infantile ministers launching plastic rockets around the Labour cabinet behind Jeremy’s back, an image of David Cameron adorned in hivis, blemishing his hands with fracked oil, and a forlorn Tim Farron desolately contemplating the failure of the Liberal Democrats prior to his adoption of party leadership. All very well, but until the Greens have developed convincing policies which can be implemented effectively, they will themselves remain a laughing stock.

There is no doubt that more examples of the UK’s recent political puerility can be found – an undemanding glance at either tabloid or broadsheet will reveal plenty. On this basis, the Greens have made an accurate

YouTube / The Green Party

Until the Greens have developed convincing policies which can be implemented effectively, they will themselves remain a laughing stock

The video concludes with a litany of Green principles and promises including proclamations that they’re “a party that cares about our planet, [putting] it before the profit of greedy corporations… a party promising to ban fracking completely, ensuring a fair, more affordable energy system for everyone.” The Greens rightly observe that politics can be trivial and that politics can be petulant. However, until they show us how their honourable promises can be fulfilled – how these ideas can translate into a sustainable reality – the joke is on them.

An accurate depiciont? Or just jealous desperation from a party that will never get into government..?




J. Kelly-Linden, Referencing is Hard (Bristol: Epigram, 2016), 11. Jordan argues that referencing is a minefield at university and it simply isn’t fair Jordan Kelly-Linden Comment Editor

Thousands of students across the country have been pulled up for academic misconduct. With 50,000 students caught in the past three years cheating, the Times – the newspaper that conducted the investigation into these figures –have labeled it a ‘plagiarism epidemic’. Many of those caught admitted to using plagiarism tools like ghost writers, or that trusty copy and paste feature on Word. Others blamed confusion over how to reference properly. Putting their ‘misconduct’ down to a lack of information on how to cite accurately and correctly.

A very familiar sight to many students as the books pile up... but have you remembered to reference them properly?

English love their MHRA, whereas Classics… well, I’d like to say they’re into MLA but who knows. After failing to get my head around the department’s minimalistic style guide in first year, I’ve point blank refused to give that one the time of day. Different tutors also want different things and that includes tutors within the same department. One will just be happy with the fact you got the words down on the page. Another will relentlessly nitpick, circling reference after reference, ruthlessly questioning your intelligence. English supply a style guide but that doesn’t necessarily mean you’re on the right track. As three separate tutors have pointed out on three separate occasions, the style guide isn’t even right in some places. So, if trying to anticipate each lecturer’s predilections didn’t already complicate

While these findings are certainly worrying, I can’t really say I’m particularly surprised with that last one. Throughout my university career I’ve had my fair share of problems with referencing, although it’s never got to the point where I’ve been accused of cheating… But I do empathise with these students. Referencing is really quite hard. Especially if, like me, you’re a joint honours student. Why is it harder for me and the rest of my peers also dealing with the trauma of this type of degree, you ask? Well, for one, the fun thing about being a dual honours student is that you belong to two different departments. Two departments means two different styles of marking and, if you’re lucky enough to be an English and Classics student at Bristol, you’ll also have noticed that they like to use different academic referencing systems.

Flickr/ Morten Oddvik

English supply a style guide but that doesn’t necessarily mean you’re on the right track.

the situation, making sure your citations conform with some, but not all, of the ideas in the style guide makes everything ten times more difficult than needs be.

Referencing is really damn hard nowadays and any student who says otherwise is lying.

The other great thing about being an Arts and Humanities student is that your bibliography isn’t just limited to conventional books and easy-toreference articles. From ancient pornography, to

Youtube videos, podcast clips, and even Reddit threads, your academic citations can go from ordinary to ridiculous in less time than it would take for me to explain what subject I’m actually meant to be studying. And, even then, I wouldn’t count on the English MHRA style guide to help you out with these references. Steven James’s pointers are only there to help the straight-and-narrow academic, the Shakespeare fanatic and lover of Wordsworth. Try to be outlandish with any of your sources in an English Literature essay and you’re likely to fall flat on your face. While the hotshots at the Times might be looking down on us students, thinking we’re a generation of sneaks… and morons, I say do one. Referencing is really damn hard nowadays and any student who says otherwise is lying.

A letter from an angry editor: Let’s stop picking sides Stefan Rollnick moans about how bad students are at having useful debates: whose mind are we changing? Stefan Rollnick

Deputy Comment Editor

You are displaying a huge amount of ignorance to the crux of the issues. It’s not even about free speech, you arsehole. A lot of these disagreements come from ignorance to the details of the issues and by polarising a debate you leave no space for people to change their minds and inform their opinions. As a fundamental defender of free speech on campus, I used to often find myself referring to safe spaces and trigger warnings in an argument without even knowing what they were. Of course it’s ridiculous and unrepresentative of the student body at large that someone was told in a student council meeting in Edinburgh University that raising their hand was an infringement of safe space, but have you actually ever wondered why safe spaces were created in the first place? Well, it was to give people who were unsure about their gender identity a place to talk about their feelings without being told they were inherently wrong. Is that really

so awful? It’s hardly North Korea. Are trigger warnings really for ‘big babies’ who don’t like to hear nasty things and don’t want to be offended? Or are they just for people struggling with mental health issues who just need some time to recover from a traumatic experience before they discuss a certain topic in any detail? By demonising these people for wanting to feel safe, you are displaying a huge amount of ignorance to the crux of the issues. It’s not even about free speech, you arsehole (I hope you will also defend my right to call

you that). So as we begin to look towards the next year of student politics and student debate, I hope we can begin to see that we can have our freedom of speech without making life a misery for people with mental health issues. We can criticise the actions of the Israeli government without being anti-Semitic. We can question the direction of feminism without being sexist. If I had to pick a side, it would be Team #It’sProbablyANotAsSimpleAsThat. YouTube / The Anti-feminist

Dear fellow students, This might sound a little bizarre coming from a guy whose function in the student newspaper is propped up by people taking sides on certain issues, but I’m starting to worry a little about the culture of student debate. Of course there are lots of things to be positive about when it comes to students taking charge on the social issues of tomorrow. Climate change, mental health and gender identity are all issues that students have come down on the right side of history and we should be proud of this. But unfortunately, most things in life are too complicated to be reduced to the question of ‘who’s side are you on?’ As a student body, we seem to have developed a culture in which no one can have a balanced opinion on these complex issues, all in the name of a ‘revolution’. Real revolutions come about when large numbers of people shift their stance on an issue, not when two groups of people argue and argue until they forget about all of the things that they have in common. Take Israel and Palestine, for example. Of course the behaviour of the Israeli government has been disgraceful over the past few years, verging on genocide, but simply calling a Jewish person names and labelling them as a Zionist doesn’t solve this problem. There are many Jewish people, like my

very own father, who are part of organisations like Jews for Justice in Palestine. If you start from a position of disagreement before you even hear someone’s argument, you’re not going to change anyone’s mind.

Is this a realistic depiction of safe spaces? Maybe, maybe not. #Boringgggg



Science & Tech

@EpigramSciTech Editor: Alfie Smith Deputy Editor: Matt Davis Online Editor: Amy Finch

asmith@epigram.org.uk mdavis@epigram.org.uk afinch@epigram.org.uk

Facecrooks: how to avoid their scams online Alfie Smith Science Editor In 2012 after conducting a survey, Facebook estimated that 8.7 per cent of its profiles did not represent real people. At the time this would have meant that 83 million accounts were fake. Classifying an account as ‘fake’ is surprisingly tricky. Some of these accounts were considered fake because they did not belong to the people they claimed to represent. If you type in ‘Cristiano Ronaldo,’ then you can see this for yourself. Some accounts were

bots, which are autonomous profiles that search and post given an initial set of parameters. In the same year, Facebook claimed to have deleted 80 million fake profiles. The timing of this purge is quite interesting. If these 80 million accounts made up the bulk of fake profiles reported in Facebook’s annual returns, then it should be the case that the proportion of false accounts would be smaller in the following year. According to the 2013 reports, the number had risen to 11.2 per cent of all profiles making up 137 million accounts. I found three sites offering to exchange thousands of followers,

re-tweets and likes for cash. One site demanded $150 for 2000 Instagram followers and $80 for the same number in likes. A report by the BBC found that while claiming that these new friends represented genuine accounts in the US, UK and Canada, around 80 per cent came from countries outside the G20, with a large section from South Asia. Furthermore, a hundred of these new likes came from accounts that had liked over 100,000 other pages, which is not exactly the behaviour of a real person. Purchase of likes from farms in the developing world, predominately Indonesia, Egypt and Bangladesh, is

against Facebook’s policy and could, in theory, lead to account deletion. Surprisingly, several sources found the likes generated by Facebook’s own boosting programmes, where you pay to reach more profiles, actually seemed to come overwhelmingly from these three countries.Further evidence of this similarity between illegally and legally obtained likes is that engagement, a real metric for how your content is being received, shows the same minimal increase in both accounts. In 2013, The US state department paid $2 million dollars to boost five of its pages to one-three million likes each. They reported a less than a two per cent increase in genuine engagement with their posts.

“ The US state department paid $2 million dollars to boost five of its pages to around one-three million likes each


It seems that Facebook and these illicit firms share a common business strategy. They both offer a service with very little real returns. Likefarms go direct and provide a client with a boost in likes or followers. Facebook goes indirect by boosting posts to targeted groups. However, the results are similar. A spike in association, say likes, with little to no increase in engagement. For news outlets or advertisers, this means a negligible return in revenue for their payments. The most nefarious of this fake

population are the active profiles that post spam links on genuine pages. Click throughs from fan pages lead unsuspecting followers to sites offering false products or disguised malware. This is against many platforms’ terms of service but it has spread beyond containment. Visiting the first ten artists I could think of; I found that within one page scroll, there was at least one link to a spam site. A couple of these links sent my anti-virus berserk. I paid a visit to Facebook’s Q&A page for scam related questions. I found one question posted by a user who claimed that he had been tricked into paying for goods he had never received. The featured comment seemed genuine but the thread beneath was littered by seemingly fake profiles or links to sites that offered downloads that probably contain something other than described. It seems that we treat Facebook and other social media sites naively and this allows activity, both sanctioned and unsanctioned, that we could call at least immoral to propagate without correction. Ultimately, this article will reach a tech-literate audience, by nature of being young, but that’s not the audience that this article concerns. I worry for those who may be inexperienced or misinformed, paying for the false returns offered by Facebook, or their unsanctioned counterparts, or falling for scam links. It seems that the social media age will be full of the same issues that have plagued the previous models of human interaction – false advertising, theft and an eventual break down in trust.

UoB research shows Autism genes in all of us Dabs Morris Science writer


Autism is a very well renowned spectral mental disorder that can be present from childhood and cause developmental problems for the remainder of the individual’s life. Autism is frequently referred to as Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD); there are such a large amount of factors that determine the severity of the symptoms that the disorder is considered a broad behavioural spectrum. ASD affects roughly one per cent of the population and gives rise to significant problems with social interaction and communication. These symptoms predominantly result in the individual being unable to comprehend and reciprocate nonverbal body language and gestures. Considerable research effort in the science community has aided our understanding of ASD and what causes it. Advances in genetic sequencing and analytical techniques have led scientists to believe that ASD is polygenic, meaning it is a disorder than can stem from thousands of mild to severe genetic differences as opposed to a mutation of a single gene. Some of these differences that contribute to ASD are incredibly rare and can have profound effects on the individual. Recent research published in

Nature Genetics by Bristol scientists has suggested that genes giving rise to ASD are present in all individuals to varying degrees. Dr. Mark Daly and coworkers used ‘score genetic correlation analyses’ to quantify to what extent two phenotypes (the physical attributes dictated by your genes) share the same genetic cause. The analysis used the summary statistics of a genomewide association study to establish a correlation between genes known to contribute to ASD and genetic mutations common to the human genome. A similar correlation was also established between ASD contributing genes and other mutations present in individuals. The genetic association

between diagnosed ASDs and traits of social and communication impairment in the general population was also estimated using similar statistical analyses. Based on the analysis, the staggering correlation indicated that genes contributing to symptoms of ASD are present in the entire population to varying degrees. Dr. Mark Daly, the senior author of the recent paper in Nature Genetics and codirector of the Broad Institute’s Medical and Population Genetics Program said: “Once we had measurable genetic signals in hand – both polygenic risk and specific de novo mutations (new mutations that happen soon after conception of the embryo) known to

contribute to ASD – we were able to make an incontrovertible case that the genetic risk contributing to autism is genetic risk that exists in all of us and influences our behaviour and social communication.” The study shows that collecting and using phenotypic and genetic data in normally developing children can be useful in terms of the design and interpretation of studies targeting complex neurodevelopmental and psychiatric disorders. The data on unaffected individuals came from a general population cohort (the Bristol-based Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children) and a nuclear family cohort (the Simons

Simplex Collection) of ASD cases and unaffected siblings. A Bristol collaborative study focusing on the areas of genetics and medicine have discovered a striking correlation between ubiquitous genes associated with difficulty in social situations and genes known to contribute to ASD. With research going on in Bristol and elsewhere, the picture of ASD, what it is and what causes it is becoming closer to being complete. This may mean that over the coming decades, our continually growing understanding of ASD may help us to mitigate its symptoms or even develop a treatment based on the advances of genetic science.

Epigram 25.04.2016

How to say sorry to Jason Donervan Ben Parr Investigations Editor We’ve all been there. Waking up hungover, fuzzy memories from the night before, not quite sure whether the car you got into was actually a taxi and whether you dreamt it or you really were vomiting on a gravestone. However, one thing you do know is you need to apologise to someone, probably everyone, for your terrible behaviour. But the question of who you need to apologise to is not the only factor to consider as you revaluate your terrible life choices. A simple sorry might not be enough, but fortunately new research claims to know how you can maximise your apology for the best effect. According to the results of a recent study there are six key components to a good apology and the more of these components you can include when you say sorry, the more effective your apology will be.

beverages and a craving for chicken nuggets, when you asked me whether I wanted sauce, I felt I had to answer by banging my fist on your van and

I answered by banging my fist on your van and screaming “chicken nuggets” at you

screaming “chicken nuggets” at you. This was wrong of me.’ Thirdly, and actually most

Waking up not quite sure whether you dreamt it, or you really were vomiting on a gravestone

importantly, is an acknowledgement of responsibility. Let Jason know that he is not responsible for your hungry wrath, he was merely trying to serve his world class delicacies. Fourth and fifth in the ideal apology is a declaration of repentance followed by an offer of repair. In our (still completely fictitious) example, a good way to apologise might be to let Jason know you will never get angry at him again, and to make it up to him you will never go to a different late night food vendor. Finally, to finish your perfect apology, you need to request forgiveness. This

can be anything from a simple ‘please forgive me Jason’, to standing outside his van in the rain, blasting Beiber’s ‘is

Standing outside his van in the rain, blasting Beiber’s ‘is it too late now for me to say sorry’ from a boom box

it too late now for me to say sorry’ from a boom box. According to the research

this is the least effective component of the apology, so the former of the two might be preferable. The study was performed with a total of 755 people, the majority of them undergraduate students. Apologies were tested with different numbers of elements and then rated on how effective they were, leading the researchers to conclude the most important aspects of the apology being the acknowledgement of responsibility and the offer to make amends. So there you have it, the scientifically tested apology. Whoever said social sciences were a waste of time?

Flickr: GordonJoly

To understand how the ideal apology works, consider a completely outlandish example in which (an obviously fictitious) person got a little too aggressive in their pursuit for chicken nuggets from Jason Donervans. The first component of an ideal apology is the expression of regret. A simple, ‘I regret the aggressive tone I used when I demanded my chicken nuggets, Mr Donervan’ can go a long way to making amends. An explanation of what went wrong is the second thing to consider: ‘You see, after a few too many alcoholic


App of the week: Couch to 5K

Suzie Brown Puzzles Editor

Flickr-Netowrk Osaka

The app is quite basic, its main function being to lead you through each workout, but it does have some nice additional features. The workouts are instructed via audio cues, with a beep followed by an instruction to start walking or running. Via the app you can access a forum to talk to other people following the programme and people who have completed it. You can also customise the look of the app by choosing from a selection of skins, more of which are unlocked as you progress through the programme. What this app doesn’t provide are features for mapping your route, producing graphs of your pace or monitoring your heart rate. It could also usefully provide some instructions for stretching before and after. The smart part is really behind the exercise programme and not the features of the app. If you want to improve your fitness but don’t know where to start, this app gives you a realistic exercise schedule which you will be able to keep up. And once you’ve completed C25K, you probably won’t be Mo Farah, but you won’t have to feel so guilty about those chilled nights in either. 8/10 - Perfect for beginners, easy to use and really does its job of motivating you to get moving!

Flickr: midwestnerd

C25K, named after the mantra ‘Couch to 5K,’is a running app intended to take beginners from zero fitness to completing a five kilometre run. The app guides you through a manageable eight week programme, with 30 to 40 minute workouts three days a week. There is total flexibility over when to do each workout, so it is easy to fit the programme around your lectures and other commitments. Althoughworkoutsareautomatically marked as complete once you’ve done them, you can also mark or unmark them manually, so you can repeat or skip days as you wish. Each workout consists of stints of walking and jogging, which you can do on the treadmill or outdoors. For instance, for the first week you alternate 60 seconds jogging with 90 seconds walking for 20 minutes. Each workout also includes five minutes walking at the beginning and end for warmup and cooldown. Many people have found the exercise programme effective in losing weight and gaining fitness. Even if you are not a beginner, you may find the programme helpful for improving your fitness and pace, by pushing yourself to a sprint rather than a jog.



Letters Dear Baroness Hale... Thank you

@EpigramLetters Editor: Sophie Hunter


As our Chancellor prepares to step down from her position after 13 years, Sophie Hunter writes to say thanks. Sophie Hunter Letters Editor

She remains the most senior female judge in the history of the United Kingdom. This is an incredible achievement for a woman with humble beginnings growing up in a small village in Yorkshire.

Although her role at Bristol University is primarily ceremonial (it is the Vice Chancellor, Hugh Brady, who carries out the day to day management and serves as Chief Executive), Lady Hale’s role involves handing out degrees at graduation ceremonies, meeting staff, students and alumni and although some may say the role is potentially a bit unnecessary, I think she is a fantastic figure head for our university and represents all the qualities we should aim to hold as an institution. Her role also includes acting as an advocate for the university, helping to raise our profile and advance our interests both nationally and internationally. Last year she concluded the 52 faces of Bristol series where she recounted her favourite memories during her time at Bristol. She cited her installation as Chancellors back in 2004 as a personal highlight, ‘because Bristol does ceremonial events very well and they had a newly composed trumpet fanfare which was quite exciting.’ But more recently she talked of her visit with the university to Beijing to take part in a replica graduation ceremony of the 350 Chinese graduates who hadn’t been able to graduate in Bristol or whose families could not come to see them do so. This is typical of Lady Hale’s charming and thoughtful style. During her time at Bristol, Lady Hale has presided over a whopping 67 degree ceremonies, and personally spoken to more than 16,500 graduating students. She is known for her friendliness at graduations and, when students cross the stage to have their degree formally conferred, she won’t let go of their hand until she’s

“ And Bristol will miss her too.

On leaving, Lady Hale said: ‘Everything about it is terrific: the students, whose energy and ability never cease to amaze me; the academic staff, whose scholarship is at the cutting edge of many disciplines; the support staff, many of whom have been with the University for a very long time; the leadership and administration, whose vision and resourcefulness have brought the University to its present world-ranking status; the alumni, who are amongst the most enthusiastic and generous of any in the country; the beautiful historic buildings, in which we take such pride; and the City of Bristol itself, which adds so much to the attractions the University has to offer. I shall miss them all but the time is ripe for me to take on a new challenge.’ And Bristol will miss her too. Nominations for her successor were open to students, staff and the public in January and are now facing panel consideration. But, whoever is successful in taking her role has a big

Want to respond to anything you’ve seen in this Epigram? Write them a letter! Get in touch via shunter.epigram@gmail.com or join our writer’s group on FaceBook: Epigram Letters 2015/16

Tweets of the fortnight:

Flickr / Paul Wilson


‘#SPANC16 #benparr @EpigramPaper’


‘Writing my lab report has somehow turned into me looking at farms for sale in Ghana’


‘Forgot how Sainsbury’s on the triangle gets so busy at lunchtime, they employ an actual air traffic controller for the self check-out queue.’

Flickr / Luftfila

An incredible achievement for a woman with humble beginnings from a small village in Yorkshire.

When students cross the stage to have their degrees formally conferred, she won’t let go of their hand until she’s seen them smile.

seen them smile. On one occasion, Lady Hale reassembled all the necessary key ceremonial figures in the empty Great Hall of Wills Memorial Building for an impromptu graduation when a student and their parents arrived so late they had missed the graduation ceremony. Perhaps this kindness is the secret to her long and successful career. I am personally quite disappointed not to finish my degree in 2017 by shaking her hand. Professor Hugh, speaking to the Bristol Post, thanked Lady Hale for her immense contribution to Bristol University, he said: ‘I know that Lady Hale will continue to serve the University of Bristol for her remaining period with the same remarkable energy and commitment that have made her term as Chancellor such a success. She has been a great champion for our University and when the time comes, she will leave Bristol with our heartfelt thanks.’

Flickr / University of Salford Press Office

Back in November, the University of Bristol’s Chancellor, The Right Honourable Baroness of Richmond Lady Brenda Hale, announced she was to retire from her role at the end of 2016 after 13 years as the ceremonial head of our university. I wanted to take this opportunity to write a letter of thanks to Baroness Hale, not only for her service to our university, but also for being such an inspirational figure from whom we all can and should learn from. Lady Hale was offered the role of the university’s seventh Chancellor, a role previously held by the likes of former Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill and Nobel Prize winning scientist Dorothy Hodgkin, in 2004. At the time she had recently joined the House of Lords as a Lord of Appeal in Ordinary, becoming the only woman to have ever held this position. Baroness Hale has done an outstanding job during her time at Bristol. Indeed, Lady Hale has broken many glass ceilings for women in law throughout her career. She was the first woman to sit on the British Supreme Court and the first family lawyer to fill this post. In February 2013 she was named the fourth most powerful woman in the United Kingdom by Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour, behind only The Queen, the Home Secretary and the CEO of Santander. She is also an honorary fellow at Girton College, Cambridge, a visiting fellow at Nuffield College, Oxford, visiting professor at King’s College, London and the Deputy President of the Supreme Court.

With all her incredible legal and career achievements aside, she has handled all the pressures and set backs of being a woman in such a tough, cutthroat, male dominated field with such humility and kindness, her elegance and grace never fails to astound me. She proves how far being firm but fair can get you.


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Editors: Suzie Brown; Andrea Philippou sbrown.epigram@gmail.com

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COMPETITION: Share this photo from our Facebook page to be in with the chance of winning two ents tickets to our ball!



Epigram 25.04.2016


It’s exam season; mind your head!

Exams are approaching, everyone’s working, the library is full and you’re feeling the pressure. We talk to Mark Ames, Director of Student Services at the University, and Sarah Redrup, Bristol SU Student Living Officer, about looking after your mental health.

Q. How big an issue is mental health for students at Bristol? Why does this affect students in particular? Mark Increasing numbers of students are seeking support for their mental health and wellbeing each year, ranging from students concerned about the demands of academic life to those declaring a mental health disability. These trends are mirrored throughout higher education. Our students are high achievers, but sometimes struggle studying alongside equally capable peers. Social media platforms amplify this pressure, as students compare themselves with edited highlights of each other’s lives. Sarah It’s easy to see why mental health issues are likely to affect students in particular. I don’t think we quite appreciate how difficult coming to university can be. Most of us are moving into a new place, with new people, away from our support systems, suddenly facing intense money and performance pressures. At the same time, we are all too aware of what everyone else

is doing through social media and we can’t help but compare ourselves. Am I making the most of my time as a fresher? Am I working hard enough? Am I going to enough social events? Am I missing out?

“Around 200 front-line University staff have received mental health first aid training over the last 18 months.” - Mark

Q. What support is available through the University and the Students’ Union? Mark Personal and senior tutors are the primary source of support in schools and the pastoral team in residences provides round the clock support for first years. Other specialist services include the Students’ Health Service, Student Counselling Service, Disability Services and the Multifaith Chaplaincy. Sarah The Students’ Union has long been a provider of fantastic advice through ‘Just Ask’ – our information service. If any student is unsure of what help is available, this is a good place to start. We also have a number of support groups and networks that are run for and by students,

and work closely with external charities to bring in training and awareness sessions for student leaders. Q. What are the challenges for the University and the Students’ Union? Mark We offer a multipronged approach; it’s essential that our staff are well-trained to provide the best support to students. At the same time, we work with the student body, helping them manage their own wellbeing and build personal resilience. Sarah One of the biggest challenges for the University is that it is so devolved. Students seek help from a variety of places and people, so we need better signposting to the available support. Many students will ask for help in their departments, which means that all student-facing staff need mental health awareness training. We also need to provide services out of working hours. Q. How can the University community combat the stigma associated with mental health? Mark The stigma associated with mental health discourages students from saying when they need help. We are dealing with this in many ways, not least by reviewing how we reassure students that they will not be discriminated against if they declare a mental health disability.

With the rise in awareness of mental health and wellbeing as important issues for students, the need to provide support and fight stigma is ever more pressing. Mark and Sarah discuss how the University and Bristol SU are putting in measures to promote wellbeing and safeguard the mental health of Bristol’s student population.

One option for us would be to sign up to the Time to Change Pledge initiative — www.timeto-change.org.uk — which aims to end mental health discrimination and would benefit both staff and students. Sarah The Students’ Union and the University could join together every year to celebrate key dates like Time to Talk Day, Eating Disorders Awareness Week and Mind Your Head month. We need staff to speak openly about mental health and to share their experiences. The more that we talk about it openly, the easier it will be for those around us to talk about it too.

“We need to talk about mental health as part of university culture and get to a point where staff and students can easily distinguish between everyday levels of stress and a mental health difficulty.” - Sarah Q. What can individuals do look after their own mental health? Mark Try the Happiness Pulse, the new student wellbeing self-assessment tool for managing personal wellbeing. Big White Wall also has a

University Sponsored Content

range of online wellbeing self-help resources. Getting involved with student clubs and societies, taking regular physical exercise, getting enough sleep and eating well can boost your wellbeing. There are also student societies, such as Peace of Mind, which cater specifically for students managing mental health difficulties. Sarah Put your wellbeing before your work. Everyone needs a good support network with at least one friend to talk to. You should know who to approach if you need advice or help. The counselling service has drop-in slots, senior tutors have excellent knowledge of University support systems, the Disability Services team is extremely quick to reply to emails and of course the Students’ Union is always here to support you. You can drop the officers an email or contact Just Ask. Q. Long-term mental health issues are different to everyday stress, but there are connections. Any tips to mitigate effects of stress in the run-up to exams? Sarah Whether or not you have a long-term mental health difficulty, exam periods are extremely stressful. Even though libraries are open 24/7 that doesn’t mean that you should be there all the time. You’re allowed to take time off. Get out and explore Bristol, find a new café or see a band, and watch out for signs in others. Offer to listen, plan study sessions together – and time out sessions – so that you can both structure your day. Mark There are also some excellent resources on the Student Counselling Service website to help manage exam anxiety. Look after yourselves; we want your university experience to be a good one.

“As we approach exam time, we have some exciting plans at the SU with activities to help students relax and study in a healthy way. Watch this space!” - Sarah

Accommodation rents and how they are set

18 April to 14 May Sarah is running a month-long campaign — Mind Your Head — to raise awareness of mental health and start conversations about taboo subjects like self-harm, suicide, trauma and eating disorders. There is a packed events programme on offer, including a ‘crafternoon’, wellbeing walks, laughter yoga, talks, discussion and, workshops. Find out more: bristolsu.org.uk/mindyourhead

There’s a wide range of support available from the University, the Students’ Union and the NHS. These can be accessed anonymously or in person, offering you the choice of support – peer or professional – you are most comfortable with.

Just Ask

Support, advice and guidance from professional advisers Web: bristolsu.org.uk/justask/ Email: bristolsu-justask@bristol.ac.uk Tel: 0117 331 8634 In person: Monday to Friday, 10am to 4pm, 3rd Floor of the Richmond Building/Students’ Union

Big White Wall

A safe, online community providing round-the-clock peer and professional support (with trained professionals online at all times), plus a range of wellbeing tools to help you take control and feel better. Web: bigwhitewall.com

Student support groups


Mind Your Head

Feeling down? Don’t go it alone, get some help

• • • • • • • •

Epigram | 25.04.2016

Survivor network for student survivors of sexual violence Postgraduate network Disabled students network Mature and part-time students network Parents network LGBT+ support group Student Minds Eating Disorders support group Peace of Mind – a society run by people with experience of a variety of mental health difficulties and supporting others Nightline – a listening service, run by students for students

Email Sarah Redrup (sarah.redrup@bristol.ac.uk) for further details.

Other Options The Happiness Pulse – bristol.ac.uk/happiness-pulse Student Counselling Service – bristol.ac.uk/student-counselling Students’ Health Service – bristol.ac.uk/students-health Disability Services – bristol.ac.uk/disability-services/ Multifaith Chaplaincy – bristol.ac.uk/chaplaincy Managing academic problems and study strategies – bristol.ac.uk/student-counselling/selfhelp/studystrategy Student Residential Life team – providing guidance and support to students 24/7 on-site in all University residences Mental health/wellbeing resources and support - bristol.ac.uk/students/services/mental-health or bristolsu.org.uk/justask/welfare/mentalhealth.

We have just published the rents for University accommodation for next year. This short article provides some detail about how we set them. The University aims to deliver a high quality experience for students in University accommodation and this includes both the physical environment as well as the range of services that support students living in halls. The rents paid by students fund both of these. In the past, the accommodation fees were not sufficient to cover all of the costs involved in running the residences. As a result, over recent years, rents have increased in order to arrive at a level where they cover these costs, with the aim of being fully cost neutral by 2018. As part of this process, in 2016/17, the rents will rise by approximately 4% for catered rooms, 5% for selfcatered rooms and 3% on leased properties. The income derived from accommodation fees pays for all of the following: • All of the staff who contribute to the smooth running of the residences; including porters, handypersons, administrative and catering staff; • routine and emergency maintenance (the latter is a 24/7 service); • utilities including all charges for gas, electricity, water and internet (separately these are estimated at £15.00 per week per student); • cleaning of communal areas, including kitchens and bathrooms; • an extensive pastoral team including wardens and senior residents; • 24-hour security; • ongoing major and minor refurbishments; • contributions to the funding of other teams involved in the running of the halls, eg Student Support Services, Estates, HR, Finance, etc; • catering: in addition to catered residences, where breakfast, evening meals and a number of formal meals are provided, a

formal meal and ‘nosh nights’ are offered to students in self-catered residences; and a bus pass for all undergraduate residents on the number 16 Wessex Service between the city centre, the central campus and Stoke Bishop.

Two additional benefits will be included in rents from 2016/17: • those in catered halls will have meals provided over holiday periods at no additional cost throughout their tenancy agreement; and • an Active Residents Sports Pass. The level of rent for a particular rule is also influenced by a range of other factors, including the size of the bedrooms, facilities in the residence, condition of the décor and whether the room is shared. For example, in halls such as Hiatt Baker, additional common rooms, computer rooms, study rooms, a music room, and a bar are provided. All of these additional facilities require cleaning, heating, lighting, maintenance, etc, which results in higher running costs. Rents are banded, wherever possible, to allow students to make comparisons of offerings and to ensure a range of budgets can be met. We ensure there are a number of rooms capped at a lower level ‘budget’ rent, and this rent level is agreed with the Students’ Union. All University rents are also benchmarked against rents charged at other institutions and commercial accommodation providers in Bristol. Further information about accommodation fees can be found at: www.bris.ac.uk/accommodation/ undergraduate/fees/ Students who run into financial difficulties and have trouble paying their rent can find out about the support on offer at: www.bristolsu.org.uk/ justask/money/hardtimes and www.bristol.ac.uk/ fees-funding/advice/.

University Sponsored Content

25th April 2016


27 years and 300 issues later We celebrate our milestone by taking a look back... 50 years of 007 - James Bond special page 27 University of Bristol’s Independent Student Newspaper Monday May 9th 2011

Issue 238

It has been confirmed that the Univeristy of Bristol will charge students three times the current fees from 2012.

FEATURES: page 6 A check up down below Does our generation not take sexual health seriously enough? Features investigates the nitty gritty part of SEX.

COMMENT: page 10 The new Union team What can you expect from next year’s sabbatical team? President-elect Gus Baker puts his promises down on paper.

BE FAMOUS: page 16 The Epigram 40 is back! Photo: Jonathan Taphouse

The opening of a new Tesco store in the Stokes Croft area of Bristol sparked riots against police during the Easter break.

Try guessing which nightclub Bristol’s most promiscuous girls go to - or read the answer in E2.

TRAVEL: E2 page 10 Best foreign festivals Epigram takes a look at the best of the foreign music festivals happening this summer.

The Women’s Novice Rowing Squad tell us how they are going to annihilate UWE.

Love journalism? Want to be a part of the team that puts Epigram together?

Students host free education week

Ella Eyre Interview page 46

Ex-MP Lembit Opik spoke to the Politics society about Coalition, a run at Mayor of London, and his love life.


FEATURES: page 7 Accomodation crunch

LETTERS: page 12 President Responds James Ashton-Bell responds to criticism of the union’s response to tuition fee rises.

SCIENCE: page 15 Jurassic Park professor Epigram talks to Mike Benton, the scientist who told us what colour dinosaurs were.

LIFESTYLE: page 2-3 What would Dolores do

Black Swan, Blue Valentine and Brighton Rock: take your pick of the finest in

Bristol student found dead at recycling facility

Less than half of students satisfied with Union

Can the media make a difference to the thousands of other disappearance cases just like that of Joanna Yeates?

Epigram explores the wonderful world of puppetry


Friday 25th September 2015

Bristol University’s Independent Student Newspaper

COMMENT: page 11 Missing persons

‘Free education’ week involves nine events focused on spending cuts to education

Issue 278 Issue 278 Monday 27th Monday 27th University of Bristol Independent Student Newspaper October 2014 October 2014 www.epigram.org.uk www.epigram.org.uk

Issue 252

Monday 8th October 2012

Why do Bristol students rush to sort houses so early in the year- and is it self-induced, or even non-important?

LUCY WOODS News Reporter Bristol University students are setting up a week of free education events which began on Friday 28th January and are taking place all across the campus. The events are intended as further protest against government cuts to the higher education budget. In December 2010, protesters against the cuts, otherwise known as ‘The Occupiers’, marked the “end of the first chapter of demonstrations” through the dis-occupation of Senate room, Senate House. They emphasised the “extraordinary level of support” from the University, including seven University departments and “countless individuals”. The week of free education will hope to gain further support in the struggle against such drastic financial cuts. One member of ‘Bristol against education cuts’ believes there are three methods of “taking the struggle forwards”. The first is reuniting those involved in the resistance to higher education cuts last term, who are likely to be reeling from the blow of the fee vote passed in parliament. The second method is “taking matters into our own hands”, as the University administration would rather “decide a position behind closed doors”, thereby preventing students and lecturers from having their say in the decisions. In protest against this, students hosted a panel event, ‘Reimaging the University! Higher Education, Funding & the State’, followed by a “free discussion on what the cuts will mean for us”. Several other debates, workshops and lectures will take place throughout the week in order to allow students to have their say. The final method emphasized by ‘Bristol against education cuts’ is “Participating in the wider struggle against public sector cuts”. Students have therefore protested against taxdodging by greedy corporations. [Continued on page 2]

Issue 252

Issue 234

NEWS: page 5 Opik Checks in

Epigram’s resident agony aunt gives her best advice for singletons on Valentines’ day

A University of Bristol student has tragically died in ambiguous circumstances that may have resulted in him being crushed inside a bin lorry after a night out with a friend. Garrett Elsey - a 22 year old from Sherwood Park, Canada - had enrolled to start his Masters in International Security in the School of Sociology, Politics and International Studies and had been in the UK just one day when the incident happened. Elsey’s body was found by workers at around 10.20am on Thursday 27th September at the New Earth Solutions centre - a recycling plant in Avonmouth. Police cordoned off communal bins in nine areas across Bristol whilst investigations were conducted into how his body could have ended up at the site. It is now believed he was picked continued on page 3

Are boobs news? The Page Three Debate

Page 11

Student numbers increased by 600

SPORT: page 30 The BIG Debate Was it right to sack Andy Gray and accept Richard Key’s resignation over sexist remarks?

University of Bristol’s Student Union - which is currently undergoing Page3 >> renovation work - has received one of the lowest satisfaction ratings in the UK.

Sarajevo, Buckley Bosnia and Jemma News Editor Herzegovina:The results from the most recent National Student Survey (NSS) Epigram’s top – released just before the start of travel tips forterm - show that only 45% of final year students are satisfied with the the curious University of Bristol Students Union

The survey – which has been taken by over 1.5m students since it launched in 2005 – is used to compile statistics relating to student satisfaction in eight areas: teaching, assessment and feedback, academic support, organisation and management, learning resources, personal development and overall satisfaction. This year the survey

also asked students to rate their satisfaction with their union or guild. 260 universities and further education colleges across the UK took part in the survey and student satisfaction with UBU ranked in the bottom five, with just 45% of students agreeing that they were ‘very satisfied’ or ‘mostly satisfied’

with their union. Oxford University’s Student Union came joint last in the survey with their neighbour Oxford Brookes. ‘We are dedicated to ensuring that the [UBU satisfaction] score improves over the next few years. Unfortunately, students tend to focus on the building when they think of the Students’ Union and it

Whilst many top universities across the country have struggled to fill places on their courses this year, Epigram has learned that the University of Bristol has been successful in increasing student numbers by over 600, bringing the total number of places available to undergraduates to 4400. The increase follows changes in regulatory arrangements, permitting universities to increase the number of places available for students achieving A-level grades of AAB or above. According to figures reported by The Telegraph, seven out of 24 institutions in the elite Russell Group

Wardens feel ‘too uncomfortable’ to address issues surrounding sexual consent during Freshers’ Week welcome talks, instead leaving topic unaddressed

Hall Wardens ‘undermine’ Union

Issue 289

News Meet the new Vice Chancellor, Hugh Brady, in our exclusive interview Page 5


Sarah Newey News Editor Ivana Scatola Deputy News Editor

Becky Morton looks into government changes in

Issy May Bull Deputy News Editor

maintenance grants and

Hall Wardens have not complied with the University and University of Bristol Union’s desires to address the issue of rape consent during Freshers’ Week, Epigram has learned. Wardens were asked to include a single presentation slide which briefly highlighted issues of consent in their welcome talks. The slide was designed by Alice Phillips, the Students’ Union’s Equality, Liberation and Access Officer, and approved by Director of University Student Services Mark Ames This was another measure to attempt to combat the rape culture which 46% of students believe still exists at Bristol University (Epigram, 13/10), and which the Union have been actively campaigning against for over a year. However, just one week before Freshers’ Week, the Hall Warden’s Committee opted to make this slide optional rather than compulsory. Consequently, Epigram is aware of only 3 halls at Bristol using the slide and addressed the issue during Freshers’ Week. Alice Phillips, the Equality, Liberation and Access Officer, expressed her dissatisfaction with the outcome to Epigram, ‘[Dr] Martin Crossley Evans [the Head Warden] did not tell me that the committee had decided the slide was optional, I found out from a senior resident on Friday 19 September that this decision had been made. This was very disappointing because by this point there was very little I could do, and I had been under the impression that since the slide had been sent to them by the University it would be included.’ She went on to suggest that its inclusion ‘Would have shown progress on the University’s part and would have been a good platform to build on for the Union’s work on consent awareness in the future.’ Epigram was told that the Warden’s Committee made the consent slide optional because they did not feel that wardens were qualified

what they mean for you Page 8

Music Head to music for an

One student property in Clifton, which is riddled with mould and damp, is finally having a roof assessment

Students face ‘Housing Crisis’ • •

Ben Parr Investigations Editor

Over 90 per cent of Bristol students experience problems with private accommodation, according to the findings of a student housing survey conducted by Bristol SU. The damning survey found that one third of Crossley Evans was guarded, adding, students would not recommend the University ‘The Wardens individually and collectively are of Bristol to a friend, purely because of their very happy to have the Union introduce consent experiences in the private sector rented training and workshops in the halls for those in accommodation. In fact, only two letting agencies University residences during the autumn term.’ gained an approval rating higher than 50 per cent. continued on page 3

Bristol’s take contrasts with universities like Oxbridge, where there are compulsory workshops enough to discuss the issue. It has also been suggested that it was felt that consent did not fit in with the general theme of welcome talks. David Alder, Bristol University’s Director of Communications & Marketing, commented that ‘The Hall Wardens had discussed this matter in

advance and made it clear they did not wish to undermine the need for guidance and advice on this important issue, but felt it needed to be delivered in a different format by people with experience of making presentations on this challenging issue.’ When asked about the issue, Dr

alternative guide to freshers and tips on where

New report shows 75 per cent of students battle with mould and damp, and one third of students wouldn’t recommend the uni based on experiences of renting private accommodation Union Officer Tom Phipps suggests there is a ‘housing crisis,’ as rents are increasing while standards decrease

Sarah Newey Editor

flirckr: roga muffin

SPORT: page 32 Bristol’s hidden stars

Monday February 7th 2011

Photo : ©keith morris

Although the gathering began peacefully, clashes with police soon erupted and spilled out into the surrounding area. Barricades of burning bins were erected; fireworks, bricks and bottles were thrown at riot officers. Local resident Alex Slocombe saw “running battles with police all over the place.” By around 1:00am it seemed that police were no longer in control of the operation. A group of rioters managed to ransack the recently opened Tesco Express. Its windows were smashed, a sign ripped off, and “closing down sale” scrawled across its facade. [Continued on Page 2]

Photo : Tristan Martin

arrest. At 9:15pm officers closed Cheltenham Road and forced entry into the building. Four men were arrested, and a police statement confirmed that a number of items were seized “including petrol bombs – which are currently being forensically examined”. One of the men subsequently pleaded guilty to possession of a petrol bomb, but not guilty to a second charge of threatening a Tesco employee with it. Following the highly visible arrests at Telepathic Heights, hundreds of people began to congregate in the area. Within a few hours they were joined by over 160 riot officers, many brought in from Wales.

LIFESTYLE: E2 page 2 The big student survey

My time in Ukraine page 14

Mental health special page 9-11

page 23

Marek Allen

TRISTAN MARTIN News Reporter In the small hours of Friday 29th April violence broke out on the streets of Bristol for the second time in a eight days. ‘The troubles’, as one BBC reporter referred to them, first began a week before as the opening of a new Tesco sparked the worst riots seen in Bristol since 1980. On Thursday 21st, following a tip-off that occupants of the ‘Telepathic Heights’ squat on Cheltenham Road had been constructing petrol bombs, police moved into make an

Who are the University of Bristol’s most noteworthy students? Nominate now.

Interview with Marina & The Diamonds

Epigram / Jordan Kelly-Linden

Violent clashes in Stokes Croft

NEWS: page 3 £9,000 fees for Bristol

Are sex strikes women’s best political weapon? page 9

University of Bristol’s Independent Student Newspaper

The report based its conclusions on the responses of 854 students, the vast majority of which were UK based undergraduate students. Amongst other issues, the main findings were that a significant number of student properties have serious safety concerns, with 75 per cent of students finding mould or damp in their accommodation. Students voiced their frustration at both the cost of letting agents and their lack of interest in resolving problems. ‘[I] rented a seven bedroom property through [letting agency] last year, we were charged ridiculous fees and there was horrendous damp which they refused to do anything about,’ one student wrote. As well as the potential health issues of mould, damp, and broken or leaking windows, home

to head out in

security was also flagged up as unacceptable. A quarter of students were unsatisfied with the security systems in their accommodation, whilst 9 per cent of students in the survey claimed not to have a working fire detectors. The report comes out at a time when the university have ended their guarantee of university advertised accommodation places for first year undergraduate students. Student house prices are also on the rise; the average cost of upfront charges, including deposits, is £600. These sorts of issues have left a third of students claiming that they would not recommend Bristol based on their experiences. This figure is far higher for disabled students at 47 per cent, although the number of students in this category was very low. continued on page 3


Page 48

Sport A roundup of La Vuelta, the last cycling grand tour this year

Page 53

Sarah Newey, 2015-16: ‘Our success this year has been a collective effort’ Apply now to be a section editor for the academic year 2011-12

See page 16 for details

Arts p.18

27 years and 300 issues later, Epigram is still a thriving student newspaper. Indeed, our efforts were rewarded earlier this month when we were highly commended in both the ‘Best Publication’ and ‘Best Use of Digital Media’ categories at the Student Publication Awards. In the inaugural Epigram editorial, James Landale set the paper’s sights high, identifying three main aims: ‘to interest, inform, amuse and stimulate the student body’; ‘provide a forum for their own views to be expressed’; and ‘act as a watchdog on the Union and University hierarchy.’ I think it is safe to say that throughout Epigram’s 27 years, these principles have been more than achieved and continue to underpin what we produce today. But reading past Editor’s accounts of their time on the paper shows it’s not just about the stories we break, the interviews we conduct or the opinions we print; as clichéd as

Film p.28

Travel E2 p. 11 (UBU).

continued on page 3

Exclusive interview with Chairman of British Olympic Association

Inside Epigram - Mental Health Special: What can we do to help? page 9-11

Page 32

it sounds, Epigram is a community. Producing a high-quality, engaging newspaper and website is what brings us together, but the dedication and enthusiasm of a united team is what makes the publication so successful. Putting together this issue has, inevitably, made me think about my own Epigram ‘journey.’ In all honestly it’s been a little emotional; I can relate to the nostalgic memories of every past Editor, and can’t believe that soon, my time on the paper will be a fond memory rather than everyday reality. I’ve always wanted to be a journalist so, as an eager-eyed first year, I headed off to find the Epigram freshers’ fair stall. Three weeks later I wrote my first piece; a hugely exciting 300 word story about NUS student carers. I laugh now about how nervous I was to submit it. Soon after, I became Deputy News Editor, before taking on the mantle of News Editor in my second year. I was lucky to work with some incredibly interesting and committed people during these 18 months and we covered a huge range of stories, including Sir Eric Thomas’ foreign expenses; freshers forced to share single rooms in bunkbeds; and Donvervans coming under threat from the University. The highlight, however, had to be going to the Bristol West general election count; it was a long night - we were there until 6.30am and were fuelled solely by caffeine and sugar - but I loved being at the centre of events as they happened. Somehow, last May I was entrusted with the entire paper when I became Editor. It was 12pm and I was in a dorm room in central Bangkok when I got the call - I’ve never been so simultaneously scared and excited about taking on a role before. I’m not entirely sure that I realised what I’d got myself in for; I had a long line of very big shoes to fill and it hasn’t all been plain sailing. Indeed, in true Epigram style, the computers have let us down on several occasions - the worst being last November,

when the system crashed and we lost the entire paper just two days before the print deadline. Somehow, after countless cups of coffee and power naps in the media suite, we pulled it off; the response from the editorial team was incredible and the most stressful week of my year has become a very fond memory. Just goes to show the benefits of hindsight. Over the course of the year, Epigram have covered a huge range of stories; from the Colston street fire, to student attitudes about the EU, to drug use - and that’s just in News. I’m incredibly proud to have been part of such a strong editorial team; our success this year has been a collective effort, which I have been given far too much credit for. We started the year with a few changes; we added a Food section, created an Instagram account, and redesigned e2. Media is constantly evolving and we have to keep up - both with the changing preferences of our readers and new technology. We mustn’t be afraid of change; online is increasingly dominating our world and if Epigram doesn’t respond to that, we will become outdated. That said, I don’t think the newspaper will disappear any time soon and I don’t think it should. The paper has been central to our history and even if we break time sensitive stories via a different forum, hard copies of Epigram will continue to have a place. There’s nothing better than seeing your name in print, but there are also few things that beat sitting down with a cup of tea reading an in depth feature in a newspaper. Epigram is, and will continue to, adapt to a changing world while retaining our integrity and traditions. Epigram is a unique society, it’s a community of interesting, fun, slightly mad people who have become some of my closest friends. I honestly can’t imagine my university life without it - what would I do with all my spare time? (there’s a thought…)

From 1989 to 2016: Who’s come before? University of Bristo l Indep

endent Student


Does Bristol U n ignore student iversity drug use? www.epigram.org.u k

15th February 2016

• University claims they ‘do not turn a blind eye to drug • In a survey, 77 use’ per cent of studen ts at Bristol claime • Bristol studen d to have tried ts have been discip drugs lined for drug use four times less than at other unive rsities Ben Parr Investigations Editor

Issue 297

Features Is it time Bristol Uni came to terms with its dark history?

Page 6

Comment The Big Debat


What is the point


The University of Bristol are taking on a number of new studying langua initiatives as a ges? result enquiry into drug use, after a student of an about ‘Bristol’s asked rampant drug Page 11 problem’ at a Question Time event involving Chancellor last the Viceterm. At the Question Time event, the management appeared University unaware of Bristol’s ‘druggy’ reputatio n. Following the event, Epigram found in a survey of nearly 300 students that 77 per cent have tried drugs, the vast majority of which did so whilst at the University of Bristol. A Freedom of Informat Bitches and Breaku ion request has revealed that during ps: the 2014/15 academic also only one student year, Epigram’s residen was disciplined by the Pro Vice-Chancellor t Agony for drug use. The have since told university Epigram that a Aunt and Uncle further 109 students were are back disciplined by hall wardens during this year. This compares to at least 468 Page 18 students who were disciplined for drug related offences at the University of Exeter same period. during the The Universit y’s new initiative designed as a s are way to introduce of the ‘risks of awareness drug disciplinary action.’ use, including potential They include alcohol awarenes drug and s workshops Were you for students in University residences, for which student attendance is ‘expected ’. snapped by our One resident at Badock Hall said she doubted how good the attendance at street style team? the awareness sessions would be: ‘Because so many people take drugs, workshop on it Page 27 a seems stupid to them, they see it is a joke and don’t care’, she said. continued on page 3





2002-03: Murray Garrard 2003-04: Craig Woodhouse 2004-05: Georgia Howe 2005-06: Katie Quilton 2006-07: Alan Tang 2007-08: Joshua Burrows 2008-09: William Irwin 2009-10: William Miles 2010-11: Ellen Lister 2011-12: Tom Flynn 2012-13: Pippa Shawley 2013-14: Josephine Franks 2014-15: Zaki Dogliani 2015-15: Sarah Newey

Epigram/ Sorcha

1989-90: James Landale 1990-91: Peter Hyman & Dan Mitchell // Susanna Reid 1991-92: Joe Saumaurez Smith 1992-93: Michael Gomulka 1993-94: Andrew Davis 1994-95: Rachel Kerr & Kirsty Walker 1995-96: Ben Lyttleton 1996-97: Timothy Lewis 1997-98: Andy Dangerfield // Mike Shaw 1998-99: Mike Shaw // Jack Malvern 1999-00: Katherine Freeman 2000-01: Guy Newey 2001-02: Anna Farley

‘Because so many people take drugs, told Epigram in a workshop on regards to drug it seems stupid and alcohol awareness to them, they see it as a joke and workshops being don’t care,’ one run in university student residences.

Don’t miss our Varsity Special Page 23-26

Film and TV Does Leo really deserve an Oscar?

Page 40


James Landale, 1989-90: ‘The fact that Epigram has survived for 300 issues is not a miracle’

The fact that Epigram has survived for 300 issues is not a miracle. It is testament to successive generations of dedicated students who have kept the flame alive, shaping and developing this newspaper into the glory that it is today. They could have gone to the pub. They chose not to and we should all be grateful. What is a miracle is that Epigram survived its first few editions. We made it up from scratch. We blagged a small office in the union. We went out and bought lots of newspapers and shamelessly copied the styles and fonts we liked. We did what we wanted and wrote what we wanted. The first editions were strewn with my own jokes. There are far too many Monty Python references. The humour is too arch, the copy in need of subbing and the pictures pretty ropey. The whole thing was put together on a single Apple Macintosh computer. Contributors would queue up to copy their pieces directly in the machine. Those who were more technically minded would write their articles on university computers and then proudly walk into the office bearing a floppy disc which we would then insert into the side of the Mac. There was no email, no internet, no Google. Some simply filed their copy in longhand, as we all did with essays in those days, and expected someone (me) to type it up for them. The whole paper would then be saved onto one disc - and yes, they really were floppy - and taken down to a rather insalubrious part of Bristol where the printers would commit the alchemy that turned our work into a real newspaper that you could touch and feel. Epigram was a child of internal student union politics.

There had been a single news magazine called Baccus that served all student bodies in Bristol - the uni, the poly, the technical colleges and so on. But it was hardly a riveting read; it published, for example, minutes of NUS meetings. There was a row over cash and the university union decided to withdraw its funding and set up its own newspaper instead. Crucially, that meant that we had a fair wind. We were allowed to experiment and make mistakes. And, boy, did we make some of those. The first headline was in Latin and had a typo. I cannot decide which I regret most. I remember fondly the day we reviewed a band from Manchester that we thought was called the Hippy Monkeys. I hope the Happy Mondays never got to read the cutting. But there were some good stories, the listings were comprehensive and the sum was greater than the parts. And the attitude of the paper then is still the right one for today, namely that university should be about more than just the next stage of life after A levels, that it should be savoured as a rare moment when one can live a communal life of unrestricted intellectual discovery, unencumbered by the responsibilities of family, mortgage and job, where you can go down to the pub and talk pompously about truth, beauty and justice. And from what I read about the restrictions that are being imposed on freedom of speech by some attitudes on university campuses today, that is not a bad ethos for any student newspaper to promote. So here is to another 300 editions packed with news and opinions expressed by students without fear or favour.

‘It’s your paper. Read it, write for it, eat your fish and chips out of it.’ James Landale set out Epigram’s mission statement in the paper’s first editorial in October 1989 Most student politicians are on power trips. That is to be the first comment of this newspaper. Epigram is not for such people, but for students themselves. It does not represent the news, the 3rd floor of the Union, or any specific group of students. In fact, it represents no-one. Its aim is to interest, inform, amuse and stimulate the student body of Bristol University as well as provide a forum for their own views to be expressed. That is, of course, if they have a view to express. Bristol University has a reputation of general apathy and indifference, buoyed up by middle class affluence that excludes concern about grants, loans and the Poll Tax – the sort of issues close to home that a student normally worries about. Epigram does not want to bridge the divide between a self-important Union and an apathetic student body. It merely wishes to engender amongst the student body a knowledge of what it is to be a student. It is not just doing a certain course. It is not just living in London, dashing down to Bristol for a couple of mid-week lectures. It is not just the next stage after A Levels. University is a specific way of life,

a communal existence that joins together some very different people, like it or not, by their very student status. Many have lost sight of this. Epigram aims to chage [sic] this, because it believes that students will profit from knowing more about what is going on in the University. A further aim is to act as a watchdog on the Union and University hierarchy. This doesn’t mean endless critical editorials. It means that you, the student, have a letters page in which to voice your opinions, to praise as well as to deflate a few egos. Some student politicians may be on power trips, but that doesn’t mean they cannot further student interest. The Union has a wide range of services (on the whole, very well run) that help and bring together students in an invaluable way. Epigram has set its sights high. It will be a challenge, not only for those who organise it and contribute to it, but also for you, the student. It’s your paper. Read it, write for it and eat your fish and chips out of it. Remember, the editor is on a power trip too. Whether he can also produce a good newspaper depends on you.

1991, 1992

Susanna Reid, 1991: ‘I still have every copy for that year’ Epigram is still here. These days, I present ITV’s breakfast show Good Morning Britain alongside another former newspaper editor Piers Morgan. Editing Epigram was the beginning of my dream of becoming a journalist. A mentor at uni (who went on to work on the BBC Ten O’clock News) told me I needed to do three things if I wanted to be a TV reporter: 1. Edit Epigram 2. Watch Newsnight every night 3. Do the Journalism course at Cardiff University.

The first sentence of my piece shocks me as I write it: most of you reading this weren’t alive when I was editor of this fine newspaper. Epigram celebrates its 300th edition 25 years after I was in charge – the first female editor to sit in the chair. I still have every copy from that year, 1991. A yellowing stack of papers with headlines like ‘Rent Strike,’ ‘Callous Attack Warning’ and ‘Yob Threat at Bar.’ The stories we wrote about our student days probably aren’t too different to yours: money difficulties, student safety, drinking culture. I am thrilled I’m able to write this 25 years later because

If you want to get ahead in journalism, I think his advice still stands. I confess I didn’t become a regular viewer of Newsnight – I wanted to enjoy my student nightlife. But I did the other two, and it seemed to work. I look through the copies of Epigram stacked beside me and I’m proud we produced them. But some of the stories make me laugh at how hard we tried. We thought we were achingly clever with a section inside called ‘Between the Sheets.’ We had a recipe page and a lot of feminist book reviews. Meanwhile, a student I refused to employ because his comedy seemed more Private Eye than my Guardianstyle ambitions - went rogue with his own pamphlet. Most of it was barbs aimed at me and the paper. Brilliant, incisive and way funnier than anything we published, I wish I’d kept him on the inside. I was obsessed with student politics and the main stories in the paper were often political NUS in-fighting - undoubtedly important, but terribly dull. Some headlines were bizarre: ‘NUS Conference 0 Arsenal 2.’ But the issues were – and are still – important: Your money, University funding and the quality of your education.

Joe Saumaurez Smith, 1991-92: ‘The best thing about Epigram is that it is where I met my wife’

Above all working on Epigram was fun. I had a year as News Editor under the guidance of Susanna Reid (whatever happened to her?) before editing in my second year. There was a really strong team of people who wanted to put out a good newspaper but also just enjoyed the discussions and arguments that went with it. I made some really good friends, many of whom I still see regularly 25 years later. Epigram was a great place to learn the technical aspect of how a newspaper is put together, how to deliver to deadlines and to make mistakes in a relatively relaxed environment. When I left Bristol I went to do an internship

on the Sunday Telegraph and within six weeks was education correspondent (on the basis that having just left education I should know something about it). Without my experience on Epigram there would have been no chance of landing that role. It was also surprising how many similarities there are between publishing a national newspaper and a university equivalent. One of my clearest memories are the arguments about what tone Epigram should take. There were a lot of highminded individuals who felt it should be like the Society pages of the Guardian or the Independent (back when 95 per cent of students read one of those two papers). I was more news driven and definitely leant a bit further towards tabloid coverage than some of my colleagues would have liked. When we found out that one of the candidates for General Secretary of the Student Union has a conviction for drug dealing, I thought we had our splash. Not everyone agreed and the paper was impounded for a few days while lawyers argued about whether we were disrupting the electoral process or simply stating a fact. I’m not sure I was the greatest editor of all history. I was very opinionated and didn’t deal with dissent very well; we could have been a lot more welcoming as an editorial team. Possibly the copious amounts of Guinness consumed by most of the Epigram staff didn’t improve the end product, although in some cases it definitely did. But plenty of the team went on to work as journalists, from the BBC to Al Jazeera to chief political correspondent of The Telegraph, so something must have worked. I spent five years on national newspapers and still write and broadcast regularly, albeit mainly on the subject of online gambling which is the industry I now work in. The best thing about Epigram is that it is where I met my wife, Wanda. I was News Editor at the time and commissioned her to write something. When she submitted it I re-wrote it pretty extensively and published it without telling her. She thought I was ‘an obnoxious, arrogant twat.’ But she carried on writing for Epigram, 18 months later we went out on a date and the rest is history.

We tried to keep students informed and entertained. These days the team does it even better. Happy Birthday Epigram. Thank you to the brilliant team behind our paper 25 years ago. And congratulations to all the Editors, reporters, contributors and readers who keep it going. I see it’s still winning awards and I’m proud to be part of its history. These days, I’d love to tell you there’s more time watching Newsnight, but when your alarm is set for 3.20 in the morning that’s not possible. Good luck to all the student journalists out there – and to all of you. I didn’t know what I was doing when I became Editor, but that’s the first step on the path to being good at something and I recommend it to you all.

1996, 2008


In 1997 the Government announced plans to introduce tuition fees, starting at £1,000 per year. As expected, this didn’t go down well with students. The story was the beginning of a stream of articles written over the next 19 years, as tutition fees have remained a hot topic - increasing first to £3,000 before the more recent £9,000 fee hike. As of November 2015, there are even proposals that fees might further rise - it looks like it will FREE COFFEE be an issue Epigram covers for for eveyears ry readerto turn to page 8 come.

Number 156

Bristol University’s Indepen

dent Student Newspaper

Monday 19 January 2004

GET SET FOR YET MORE DEBT • Government plans dramatic fee hike • Union calls for emergency demo FULL STORY PAGE 2

University of Bristol Independent Student Newspaper


16th November 2015

Issue 293

Philip Brulard

Tuition fees set to rise under new government proposals


Bea Gentilli investigates the rise in burglaries of student houses

to Government green paper outlines plans to allow ‘best’ universities increase fees in a controversial shake up of higher education in England

On 6th November, the government released a green paper outlining proposals for controversial changes to higher education in the UK. Although the focus on teaching quality and improving the student experience has been welcomed, the suggestions have provoked strong criticism, especially for increasing marketisation of higher education in the UK. The new plans would introduce a stronger correlation between teaching standards and tuition fees, with the highest ranking universities in England able to increase fees in line with inflation from 2017/18. Universities would be ranked according to the quality of teaching, student experience, graduate job prospects and drop-out rates under a

new Teaching Excellence Framework. Institutions which performed best in these areas would subsequently be able to increase fees above the current limit of £9,000. ‘It seems ridiculous that different universities would be allowed to charge different prices,’ one student told Epigram, questioning whether this would lead to a more ‘elitist’ educational system. Tom Phipps, Union Affairs Officer at Bristol SU, told Epigram that ‘measures used to determine teaching excellence seem flawed. It is unclear how graduate employment earnings are a good way of measuring teaching quality.’ Similarly, Gordon Marsden, Labour Shadow Higher Education Minister, called the proposals a ‘Trojan Horse for increased tuition fees and a twotier system,’ while Sorana Vieru, NUS Vice-President for higher education

and former Bristol SU Postgraduate Officer commented that the plans put ‘a particular kind of student at the heart of the system: those who can afford higher fees and study fulltime.’ The green paper, which was released the same week as a mass student demonstration in London against rising costs of higher education, also outlined proposals to replace current university agencies with an Office for Students (OfS), which would oversee the ranking process. A spokesman from the University of Bristol told Epigram that higher education funding was a ‘national issue’, as increases in fees did not increase the amount of money universities received, but instead passed part of the ‘burden’ of funding from the government to students. ‘Universities must be sufficiently funded to ensure we can deliver

the high quality education students need and expect, and the value of the tuition fee has been eroded by inflation. recognise however do ‘We the effects that any rise in fees would have on all our students, including those from disadvantaged backgrounds. We are making progress in attracting students from widening participation backgrounds: in 2014-15 we saw increases in the percentage of applications and intake in several widening participation categories. We realise however there is more to be done.’ The plans also included the prospect of exempting universities from Freedom of Information (FOI) requests ‘to level the playing field’ with private education providers, who are not subject to the legislation. continued on page 4

Page 9

Letters A love letter to Epigram / Sophie Hunter

Sarah Newey Editor

Clifton Village Page 16


Which is better, Bristol or Australia? There’s only one way to find out... Page 24

Ben Lyttleton, 1995-96: ‘That curiosity to find interesting stories never left me’ The walk to the Epigram office was never as hard as it should have been. The office was on the other side of the Union bar and no matter how much fun people were having there, even on a Saturday night, I never wanted to hang around there. My fun was inside the office! As Editor of Epigram, I soon learned the art of decisionmaking. There was never any shame in admitting, ‘I don’t know,’ as I worked with a team that did know and we made decisions quickly and collectively. We would run stories that interested us; we figured that would interest others too and usually we were right. That curiosity to find interesting stories never left me and it was first honed in that small office. Most of my Epigram collegaues went on to have outstanding careers in journalism. Some hold senior positions at top newspapers, some are chief executives of media companies, others are best-selling and award-winning authors. My journey was a little different. After I graduated, I worked for Future Publishing, based in Bath, where I wrote for a football magazine. Football was always my passion and living with students in Bristol while working in Bath was the perfect combination at the start of my career. I moved to London two years later and worked for Sky Sports and then a start-up football website. I have been a freelance football writer and broadcaster for the last 14 years and have written for publications in over 20 countries, including the Sunday Times, TIME International and the in-house FIFA magazine, FIFA Weekly. I have talked about football on BBC Radio and TalkSport, and TV stations like BBC, CNN, Channel 4 and business channels like Bloomberg and CNBC. I have written ‘white papers’ for governing bodies like FIFA and I have written a book, Twelve Yards: The Art and Psychology of the Perfect Penalty Kick, which has been published in five other countries. At Epigram, I learned two other skills that I still use every day. The art of perserverance and the importance of building

trust with your contacts. This allowed me to set up a football consultancy business called Soccernomics, which works closely with football clubs improving their performance in terms of strategy and recruitment. I now see the game from both sides of the fence, which is fascinating. My second book comes out this September: it’s for children aged between 8 and 11 and explains the world through football. I’m excited to be writing for a new audience and this book has a clear social purpose. I want to encourage children to enjoy reading and if football is the gateway to that, why not? None of this would have been possible without Epigram. That was where I first got the buzz out of developing ideas and then seeing them to fruition. I’m still doing the same today.

Josh Burrows, 2007-08: ‘I will almost certainly never enjoy journalism as much as I did then’ Pint in left hand, mouse in right, shoulders hunched over the keyboard. It was an unhealthy way to spend my student days, but I wouldn’t change it for the world. As editor of Epigram in 2007/08, my final year of university was spent almost entirely in a small office tucked into the corner of the student union building. It was an irresponsible existence. My grades suffered appreciably, my housemates treated me like a stranger, my girlfriend of two years broke up with me. But, hey! At least our circulation figures improved. I know that because I cared so much about the paper that I drove round the university delivering it myself. I had taken the job essentially because nobody else wanted it. Not that I explained that to the 20-odd members of editorial staff recruited hastily and then dragged back from their summer breaks a week early to put together the first issue of the year. Almost a decade on, many of the student journalists I worked with back then are good mates now - our friendships forged on unexpectedly wild socials, sometimes starting several hours before the print deadline, given that the student union bar was 20 yards from the office. We worked hard but we celebrated each issue too - the early 20th-century traditions of Fleet Street kept alive on Queens Road in Bristol. The biggest story we covered involved a plot by senior university staff to curtail the independence of the student union. Although Epigram never felt particularly affectionate toward the Union, the idea that the University allegedly planned to try and run it as another department was unpalatable and unprecedented in the UK. I remember worrying that the University would exact terrible revenge on me and the other Epigram staff. This never happened, but the Vice Chancellor himself wrote us a furious

letter, including the delicious revelation that the university regarded our paper as a ‘threat.’ We printed it. Obviously. Harry Byford, now working for The Week magazine in New York, won the Guardian’s student columnist of the year award for his insights into student societies. In the final issue of the year, he recounted a year as the ‘Societies Slut.’ ‘What did I get for my efforts?’ he wrote, ‘Hundreds of offensive comments, calls for my ‘sacking’ and countless awkward conversations with people who I’d been mildly rude about. And, like a first sexual experience, it was worth every second.’ Our best investigation was led by Georgia Graham, now working for Channel 4 News, who discovered widespread use of cocaine in staff toilets around the university. We celebrated the 200th issue of the paper by using a photograph of our film editor (now a corporate lawyer) on the front page - in her underwear. I think there was editorial justification, but I can’t remember it now. I now work for the Times, on the sports desk (I was Epigram’s sports editor in my second year). Epigram taught me more about producing a newspaper than anything I have done since. I have never learnt so much so quickly - from newsgathering, to man-management, to page design. I will almost certainly never enjoy journalism as much as I did for the two years I was involved at Bristol. I still find myself coming across sticky situations - usually involving people who feel they have been slandered - and realising that I encountered them first (and occasionally tackled them with a reasonable degree of professionalism) on Epigram.

2011, 2014, 2015 Josephine Franks, 2013-14: ‘I feel incredibly privileged to have been at the helm to see in Epigram’s 25th year’

Ellen Lister, 2010-11: ‘I wish I could do it all over again’ and we all jumped out to take the papers inside, somehow leaving the van parked right in the centre of the road with the doors swinging wide open and the keys still in the ignition. There was also the time I was copied on a (lengthy) signed petition from the Bristol Feminist Society asking the Union to have me removed as Editor for printing a debate on whether Hooters’ restaurant should open. That was a pretty strong introduction to feminist societies for me, but it was fascinating and always fun. Currently I am a business lawyer but I credit Epigram with not only getting me that job but also teaching me a lot of the important skills I need for it. In many respects what we did with Epigram was akin to running a business and, of course, we were writing all the time. I always have been, but am potentially even more so now, a huge journalism fan. In an age obsessed with immediacy and a flow of never ending Instagram snapshots, I love how powerful, thought-provoking and accurate, considered writing can be. I’m incredibly proud that Epigram has in the Mix: reached its Va 300th issue. Congratulations – it lentine’s recipes o do it all is a brilliantSto paper and I wishtoI wo could rm Mo del Comp over again. Renee’s Valentin etition e’s advice

When I accepted the position of Epigram Editor, there was only one flaw in my plan: I didn’t actually have a place at the university for the following year. Having completed my BA, I was intending on staying on for a Master’s, but hadn’t actually got round to the process of applying. I managed to keep this quiet during the interview and thanked all kinds of stars that not many people wanted to study an MA in European Literatures. This attitude to deadlines would be something of a constant during my time at the paper - frantic Fridays laying out the front page were not uncommon and it’s probably a good thing the porters chucked us out the office at 11pm. One particularly memorable deadline was for the 25th anniversary issue - a bumper BUY ANY COUR issue featuring articles from a host of past SE GET ONE FREE editors, published to coincide with the first Epigram ball. We’d spent weeks pulling hundreds of old One year on: issues from the archives, digging out the best What do students think of last year stories, doing battle with the temperamental ’s ASS library developments? scanner we’d commandeered from PhotoSoc and trying to squeeze a quarter of a century’s worth of history into a commemorative supplement. Bristol band features: Epigram Music The finish line was in sight. It was my looks at Bristol bands, Zun Zun birthday the following day and we had two Egui and Fitness Club Fiasco bottles of prosecco stashed in the office and in The Mix

Bristol University’

s independent

Rodent infestation in ASS

student newspape

Issue 223 Monda y 8 Februa

ry 2010

Food banned from study areas as pest control informed about library’s roden t infestation

that cleaning staff are “ensurin g that all surfaces such as keyboar ds and desks are continually cleaned and that any traces of food or drink are removed quickly.” The University does appear to be taking hygiene issues more seriously as hand sanitize r has since appeare HANNAH STUBB d next to some S of the comput Head News Repor er terminals in the ter library “to ensure extra cleanliness” but students are A rodent infestati still right to be concerned. on in the Arts and Social Sciences As the leaflets informin Library has been g students confirmed and of the pest problem students are being that appeared warned that eating in the ASS library whilst studying on Monday 1 is encouraging February point the furry visitors. out, “this is a serious matter as mice The mice were are responsible discovered for approximately the spread of two weeks ago many diseases and includin are believed to g Salmonellosis have been attracted and Gastroby food and drink enteritis, and hosts taken to the first to mites, ticks, and second floors tapeworm and fl eas.” Katie Bitten, by students. first year history Caroline Clancy, student and library University user, press officer, told commented that Epigram that the the idea of University immedi mice in the library ately contacted was “disgusting, pest control firm especially as they Rentokil who are sell food just dealing with the downstairs”. problem and insist continued on page six

Burglaries claim


Features, p.10

KissMob takes place run-up to Sexploratioon Woodland Road in the n Week - page three

Photo: Megan Stodel

My actual first memory of being Editor of Epigram is sitting alone in my student house a few weeks before the start of term, my housemates not yet returned from their summers and the house itself deathly quiet except for the clucking of many chickens (in the garden of a mystery Clifton neighbour) and roaring lions (presumably at the nearby Bristol Zoo). It was, in hindsight, an extremely odd couple of weeks and my mood was similar. I had written for the paper since my first year and had a strong sense of what I wanted the design and content to be like, but there were so many other things to consider – from the matter of recruiting writers at Freshers’ Week, to how far the budget would stretch, to which campus spots to deliver our 16,000 copies to. Luckily, I wasn’t left alone with the chickens and my thoughts for long. A phenomenal team quickly assembled around me. When I think back seriously about Epigram and the impact it had on me personally, my fondest memories are always of being in the Student Union newspaper office with the team of people who put it together. Not only did they become friends but they were a huge relief to me once I realised their ideas were basically a lot better than my own, most of the time. After years of enduring the pressure - that is put on all young people actually - to achieve for oneself by passing the school exams, getting into university and studying hard at a degree, I simply loved doing something interesting as part of a great team. I’m not really surprised when I scroll through my Facebook feed and see that most of those people are now working at the top establishments in the industry including the BBC, Sky, the Times, the Independent and so on. However it was not all plain sailing I must admit. We were but mere students and I laugh now (emphasis: now) at the time we rented a van to drop off the papers in Woodland Road

Music, p.26, p.28

a plan to de-camp to the pub as soon as the issue was sent off. The computers, however, had different ideas. Anyone who has worked on Epigram since 1989 is probably familiar with these machines - unwieldy beige monsters that look like they couldn’t run much more than a game of Pac Man. Temperamental at best, that night they truly decided to give up the ghost. All of them. Simultaneously. I can’t remember how many InDesign files we lost, but I do recall play a desperate game of ‘match the dj to the photo’ as I recreated the entire music section from proofs. After a number of increasingly terse emails between us and IT Services, it became clear we wouldn’t see the back of that issue any time soon. We cracked open the bubbles anyway and managed to accidentally crash a hen party at a nearby bar. Luckily the ball itself was more of a cause for celebration. It was a highlight not only of my year as editor, but my whole time at Bristol and I feel incredibly privileged to have been at the helm to see in Epigram’s 25th year. Bringing together so many past editors was fantastic, and hearing in person about the paper’s rich - and chequered - history was truly special. I very much look forward to seeing what the paper will become.

The best of the rom-coms: As Valentine’s approaches, Epigram selects the best cheese from the DVD shel f

Zaki Dogliani, 2014-15: ‘Getting involved was the best decision I made at Uni’ Falling student satisfaction page 14

Five a side here to stay page 55

The Big Music Debate: Kate Tempest page 48

LUKE BURNS Deputy News Editor

Issue 279 Monday 10th November 2014 www.epigram.org.uk

Donervan in danger? Philip Bruland

voices within higher figure that there were strong Donervan to be management calling for Jason front of the building removed from public land in as part of the University development. university that And sources confirmed Bristol City Council Oscar Cunnington management met with ways to take ‘control Online News Editor recently explicitly to discuss of the forecourt’ area. 45-year-old The owner of Jason Donervan, this was the first he management Mustafa Durdu, told Epigram Senior figures within university authorities discussing Bristol’s favourite had heard about University have discussed ‘worries’ over close trading moving the van. kebab vendor, Jason Donervan, this behind our development on the ‘They can’t do something like to the University’s new suggested they back. Triangle, and some privately like this behind our reveal. ‘If they attempt something ‘wanted it gone’, Epigram can university senior a from Epigram heard directly

outside in protest, I backs, I will go there and sit High Court, to the will take them to court, to the Rights if need be. European Court of Human my mortgage and ‘This is my livelihood, it pays people that work for pays the wages of the four

New VC appointed

While it’s against Epigram’s original spirit to start an article with a cliché, let alone two, that’s exactly what I’m going to do. Getting involved was the best decision I made during my time at university, and the cause of some of my happiest memories at Bristol. There, I said it. It’s true. As a News Reporter, Deputy News Editor and later Editor, I learnt so, so much. Even if the perfect journalism postgraduate qualification existed, it probably wouldn’t have taught me as much as I learnt at Epigram about writing, editing, subbing, liveblogging, tweeting, managing people and handling difficult meetings. I enjoyed meeting so many people Alexander Evans Online News Editor

me.’ been trading in The kebab van, which has in front of the Bristol for over 15 years, pitches every evening and Beacon House building at 8pm landmark, regularly remains a famous student featured on sites such as Buzzfeed.

continued on page 3

University of Bristol has appointed - formerly Professor Hugh Brady Dublin President of University College . (UCD) - as its next Vice-Chancellor outgoing Brady will succeed the Sir Eric Vice-Chancellor, Professor to become Thomas, in September 2015 the 13th man to hold the University’s top job. continued on page 3

new victims at Wi lls

belongings, including laptops, mobile phones and iPods were stolen.

The criminals respons Two violent break-in most recent burglari ible for the es are still at s at Stoke Bishop halls have large. resulted in the loss of hundreds of Jonna Williams pounds of electrica on, one of the l residents who equipment. had his ground floor room in Wills Hall Student resident broken into, told s at Wills Hall have become victim Epigram, “I had my Mac [laptop to burglary as the windows of computer] stolen. their rooms were I thought I was smashed open pretty careful, I always locked and their valuable my door and window. Even the smallest


thing will let them in: it was the little top window reported every month. Includin they smashed to the two recent g get into my room.” break-ins, there have been nearly as When asked how many burglaries the University of in Bristol Security the past six months Services respond as in the entire ed 2008-2009 to the burglary academic period. , Williamson was positive. “They The Security were really good. Service claim that They arrived within several of the offences may have ten minutes and rang the been committed by the police. I was really same group happy with that.” of offenders as the burglaries tend to follow a similar University student pattern. They rank s have been particularly vulnera Badock and Hiatt Baker Hall, both ble to burglaries this year, with an average of four continued on page five

friends I made from the team and people I interviewed - whether lecturers, musicians or politicians, and how much you learn about the University and the local area. But I also just loved the thrill, of breaking news, of deciding what should go on the front page, of animatedly discussing what could be the main headline. Like late one Friday night when one of the news editors excitedly called me to read out a quote he’d just got from the owner of Jason Donervan, who would ‘take the University to the European Court of Human Rights’ if Beacon House meant it would be forced to move. And the laughter. Laughing at some of the headlines our Travel Editors would come up with. Or amusement at the amount of people we caught out with our April Fool claiming some students would have exams in Clifton Down Sainsbury’s. Given that exams already take place at Temple Meads and Ashton Gate, it was quite believable The excitement and laughter made up for the nerves as each print deadline approached, as my trusted Deputy Editors and I meticulously read each page looking for typos in headlines or, worse, to see whether we’d printed the same page twice. Or the nervousness with which I approached the freshly-delivered stack of newspapers, convinced I’d spelt my own name incorrectly or put the wrong date. Or the stress

Film, p.32

as 11pm approached and the race was on to finish a page before the porters kicked us out of the office. I still don’t know how so many Epigrammers managed to keep their sanity and get a good degree. To sustain such a high-quality publication, which Epigram still is, over so many years is no mean feat. It’s no surprise that it’s won national awards or that so many of its contributors have gone to careers at the BBC, Sky News, the Guardian, the Telegraph, Sunday Times, Times Educational Supplement and NME (before it went free). Unlike many things at university, student media isn’t just something that feels important at the time. Now more than ever with local and national newspapers cutting staff, those of us

who look back can still see how important it is to have people on the ground reporting from each UK campus; to have student journalists holding people to account and drawing attention to noteworthy campaigns, be it the LGBT+ Society’s posters tackling transphobia or #Match4Lara, for a recent graduate diagnosed with Leukaemia. With the fees they pay, students have a right to know how much is spent on their departments, or how much a trip to the Far East for the (then) Vice-Chancellor and his wife cost. Those at Bristol are lucky enough to have had a reliable, entertaining and forward-thinking publication since Phil Collins and Belinda Carlisle were topping the charts back in 1988. Long may it continue!

2016 Becki Murray, Deputy Editor 2015-16: ‘I’ll never forget all the amazing people’ Our recent accolades at the SPA awards which saw us voted the 2nd best newspaper in the UK was certainly a highlight, but in particular, I’ll never forget all the amazing people I’ve met. As an English Literature student, there are many ways I could argue that £9000 was a lot to pay for my degree, but Epigram certainly went a long way to making up the difference. At university you expect to learn a lot of new things and meet loads of new people and I’m glad to say I have, but I’m certain that my time at Bristol wouldn’t have been the same without the creative (and often slightly crazy) individuals I’ve worked with on the Epigram team. I can safely say I’ve learnt more from this group of incredible people just this year alone than I have in a lecture theatre throughout my degree. I hope in another 300 issues time I’ll still be able to meet up with everyone again to moan about how underpaid journalists are and rub shoulders with friends who are now part of the journalistic elite. By then a pint or maybe even a shot of tequila or two(?) in MBargos will be well overdue.

Looking back, I don’t think I’d be sitting writing this, (obviously where I always seem to be, the media suite), as the Deputy Editor of Epigram if it wasn’t for my short lived university netball ‘career’ and famously dodgy knees. Quite accidentally, I ended up staying with a past Deputy Editor, Tori, in the week before Freshers in 2013 for netball training and as a result was introduced to the newspaper which would, in my opinion, colour my whole experience at Bristol University. When ACL injuries kept me off the court for good, I enthusiastically hopped my way on crutches to the Student’s Union to lay up the Living section in 2014 and then became Deputy Editor this year, luckily sans crutches. I think it’s a huge testimony to the newspaper that when I recently sat down in my interview for a Masters in magazine journalism at City University, London, the interviewer immediately picked up on the fact I was on the Epigram team, commenting that they often recruit ‘Epigrammers’ onto their courses. And whilst it’s true that I still have a love-hate relationship with the computers, InDesign, Photoshop and the overall sweltering hot temperature of the media suite, I know I’ll always look back with fond memories on Epigram and even miss the stress of laying up once in a while! Epigram truly has led to the most amazing opportunities; enough, in fact, that I could probably fill the whole paper with examples. I’ve grown as a writer and editor, seeing my name in print not only for lifestyle pieces but across the news, arts and science sections too, as well as interning at Vogue and learning just a little bit about politics along the way.

Features Is it time Bristol Uni came to terms with its dark history?

Page 6

turn a blind eye to drug use’ • University claims they ‘do not drugs at Bristol claimed to have tried • In a survey, 77 per cent of students times less than at other universities disciplined for drug use four • Bristol students have been

Comment The Big Debate:

Ben Parr Investigations Editor

What is the point of

taking on a The University of Bristol are as a result of an number of new initiatives a student asked enquiry into drug use, after drug problem’ at about ‘Bristol’s rampant the Vicea Question Time event involving Chancellor last term. the University At the Question Time event, of Bristol’s management appeared unaware the event, ‘druggy’ reputation. Following of nearly 300 Epigram found in a survey have tried drugs, students that 77 per cent so whilst at the the vast majority of which did University of Bristol. request has also A Freedom of Information academic year, revealed that during the 2014/15 by the Pro only one student was disciplined The university Vice-Chancellor for drug use. a further 109 have since told Epigram that by hall wardens students were disciplined to at least 468 during this year. This compares for drug related students who were disciplined Exeter during the offences at the University of same period. initiatives are new University’s The awareness designed as a way to introduce potential of the ‘risks of drug use, including include drug and disciplinary action.’ They for students alcohol awareness workshops which student in University residences, for attendance is ‘expected’. she doubted One resident at Badock Hall said at the awareness how good the attendance sessions would be: drugs, a take people ‘Because so many to them, they see workshop on it seems stupid said. it is a joke and don’t care’, she and don’t care,’ one student continued on page 3 to them, they see it as a joke

studying languages?

Page 11

Living Bitches and Breakups: Epigram’s resident Agony Aunt and Uncle are back

Page 18

Style Were you snapped by our street style team?

Page 27


Film and TV

#studentnumbers Does Leo

Don’t miss our Varsity Special

really deserve an Oscar?

Page 40

Page 23-26

In September 1992, Epigram’s front page suggested that a 10 per cent increase in student numbers was putting pressure on accomodation and academic resources. Judging by what students are concerned about today, it doesn’t seem like that much has changed.

Bristol University’s Independent Issue 245


ANY sandwich, baguette or roll. See page 22

Monday 26 April 2004

az Am

Student Newspaper

Comment What next for North Korea?


Association. Residents Highbury the area, has said Mark Wright, a Councillor for the High Kingsdown that, ‘The surrounding area of and what the is already well over 50% students its demographic area needs is more balance in residents.’ rather than more transient are focused residents from coming Concerns atmosphere on anxiety over the negative of Bristol Independent in the the areaUniversity that students may bring to rubbish and late night parties. fifty students form of noise, more young be reorganized to house Dr Julie Clayton said ‘We need Referendum The would not require – and walk into ‘cluster flats’ which page 10 on the site. families who can attend local schools from a distance. any rebuilding to take place driving than rather school is to who are going to The High Kingsdown development ‘We need 276 Bristol built Issueowner-occupiers the neighbourhood an award-winning area of and other each for care residents take in the 1970s, where local a mixed sustainable community.’ support26th community. andFriday pride in their vibrant, friendly from students has defended Response2014 desirable for September student one The location is extremely with reputation, since it is their that students University of Bristol students www.epigram.org.u saying ‘I amk saddened from Woodland under ten minutes’ walk in this negative way.’ buildings. are being depicted ‘It is no less Road and other major university Another has claimed that is becoming Residents fear that the area to suggest that students make peace of the discriminatory a ‘student ghetto’ where the than to say ethnic minorities neighbours bad by students neighbourhood will be disturbed on social welfare make bad a mess of litter, or those dependent creating ‘an uncared-for area, neighbours.’ front gardens objections overflowing rubbish bins and Those who do not support local noise’ as a looking like tips, not to mention that students can benefit Mews, put it. have argued Linda Ewles, of Tyndall Park that other residents can also who has community and An anonymous resident noise levels and litter. for be held responsible for resident been living in High Kingsdown In an online comment, one is outrageous. 25 years said ‘I think it appreciate the important of students has said ‘I ‘There are already a large number make to the community. population. contribution students in the here, which makes it a transient shops, cafes and pubs ‘The more many This development, with so close down without them.’ with them.’ area would regarding students, would swamp the place consultations Although from local As well as objections online convert the pub have The Kings Arms pub, which is concerns the plans to residents, there have been decision will not come due to be turned into twelve Conservation finished, the voiced by the Kingsdown committee until next month. student flats Society and before the Group, the Bristol Civic

Jessica Wingrad News Reporter Turner at the Tate page 36

Mental health in freshers residents in High Kingsdown have Local page 15 plans for a local expressed strong opposition to Turner at the Tatepub to be converted into twelve new student flats. potentially page The pub, The Kings Arms, could

Student Newspaper


Friday 25th September 2015 Epigram / Jordan Kelly-Linden


• www.epigram.org.uk

area a ‘student • High Kingsdown locals call the ghetto’ housing • Ice rink closed to make way for student 2) page (see protests amidst

ing book giveaw ay

SEE PAGE 23 Stude nts left facin g even more debt troub le as hall fees go...

Monday 23rd January 2012

Student housing plans upset locals

Number 160

Bristol University’s Independe nt Student Newspaper

real story behind homelessness

e2 Lifestyle


in Bristol — Features, page


India Castle-Gibb

Epigram takes a look at the

and have secure the accommodation we wanted sector for one cupboard desperately searching in the private which is an ended up in bunk beds sharing has been recruiting through clearing, - not ideal!’ somewhere to live.’ and one desk between two people a first year added strain on already limited supply. their Nonetheless, Darcy Ramden, Sarah Newey that rapid Other students have also expressed Churchill Hall, There have been some suggestions year Economics Philosophy student going into News Editor blame for the frustration. Hugh Williams, a first before she expansion of the University was to Epigram: described the confusion she faced Office has student also going to Churchill, told blunder. However, the Accommodation I have my moved in to Epigram. Matthew Field of its own ‘As I have already taken a year out, I had an insisted that Bristol has been a victim this year. ‘They firstly sent me an email saying Online Comment Editor that everyone hands tied in having to go to university but were policies. The University guaranteed this offer accommodation offer from Churchill before the 31st There is no possibility of me deferring to say I may who applied for accommodation into a situation very unclear on the details, it seemed therefore and I have basically been forced freshers out when August will be provided for - which More than 300 Bristol University be sharing for a while. I then found clearing, rewhich I was not even aware existed. when I was definitely includes those coming through has will be forced to share single bedrooms they updated the online offer that ‘Despite being told that the University university overmarks and insurance choices. very unclear about how were past, I they the but in this they arrive next week, after the sharing with Services, had some experiences Many of the Pru Archer, Head of Accommodation website. If I recruited first year undergraduates. long for. universities never once saw this caveat on the will I asked and told Epigram that in many other to have shared ‘I haven’t been given any options, 312 involved in the temporary arrangement to be worse had realised Churchill was going expected these latecoming freshers would said take it or leave it. Everyone would have effectively probably be provided with bunk beds, and I they year, own this their find to accommodation especially first term of off, as they would have had share desks and wardrobes for the on the Facebook group seems irritated; applied to a different residence.’ and got the accommodation. continued on page 3 their time at Bristol. those who, like me, had firmed Bristol all have been as possible to She argued that ‘If we hadn’t guaranteed An exceptional number of students grades, as well as applying as soon they would be choices these students accommodation, accepted through re-marks and insurance the University this year. It is also the first year that

Becky Morton looks into

which is riddled with mould and

Ben Parr Investigations Editor Over 90 per cent of Bristol students experience problems with private accommodation, according to the findings of a student housing survey conducted by Bristol SU. The damning survey found that one third of students would not recommend the University of Bristol to a friend, purely because of their experiences in the private sector rented accommodation. In fact, only two letting agencies gained an approval rating higher than 50 per cent.

what they mean Page 8

damp, is finally having a roof

based on experiences of renting private accommodation Union Officer Tom Phipps suggests there is a ‘housing crisis,’ as rents

Sarah Newey Editor

government changes in maintenance grants and

for you

‘The Olympics suck’ Will Self finds little reason for fanfare Students face ‘Housing 11with mould • New report showsFeature s battle 75 per cent of students and damp, and the uni One student property in Clifton,

Vice Chancellor, Hugh Brady, in our

Features Julia May

Photos: Jeremy Harper

Home, sweet home Interior design for the student house

Meet the new

Page 5

to • Rising student numbers lead University with increased demand • Housing supply is not growing take students in • University asking staff to temporarily

BRISTOL STUDENTS are bracing themselves for yet another addition to their debt problems as hall fees are set to rise by 9.9 per cent in time for the 2004/2005 academic year. Students’ Union representatives were powerless to prevent the hike which means that hall fees have increased by 25 per cent over the last two years.

Issue 289


exclusive interview

tion fiasco Students face accommoda make students share rooms

Yisan Cheong

and some brilliant experiences. I’ve been able to write about all my passions, from professional cycling to King Lear. More importantly, it gave me a vocation: I now want to be a journalist and am doing everything I can to meet that goal. Just a few of those brilliant experiences: I’ve been able to meet the last surviving Dambuster, George ‘Johnny’ Johnson; I’ve been to two Epigram balls, countless nights out and socials; I represented the paper at the Student Publication Awards (where we became the second-best student paper in the country), at The Times’ ‘Build the News’ event twice, and more. I have been able to commission people to write some great pieces (alongside some not so great ones…) and organise the Editorial Team; I interviewed all of this year’s team and help picked some incredible people. It’s crazy that I’m in this issue with some real-life successful people; Epigram has had an illustrious past and I’m hoping an even more illustrious future. Next year I’ll be one of the many Epigram alumni to do an MA in journalism, proof of the great name it has. I’m incredibly proud that this 300th issue has been jointly edited by me (I’ll take responsibility for any mistakes). My fellow editors have been the best people at Epigram, and I just want to thank a couple of people: Sarah and Becki, thanks for putting up with my insanity. You don’t have to endure me for much longer. It has been the best year of my life. Here’s to the next 300!

Does Bristol University ignore student drug use?

stupid drugs, a workshop on it seems being run in university residences. ‘Because so many people take and alcohol awareness workshops told Epigram in regards to drug


I never thought I would want to be a journalist. I came to uni to study history because I had no idea what I wanted to do. Teacher? Civil servant? Politician? At one stage I genuinely contemplated becoming a Church of England priest (my lack of faith in God was a stumbling block). Then I found Epigram. A small stall at the Freshers’ Fair caught my eye and I thought that writing would be fun, seeing as I had many bad opinions. I wrote my first article for Issue 265 in my second month at Bristol for the Comment section. It was about Iran’s relationship with the USA, of all things, a subject I haven’t returned to… I ended up writing in many of that year’s issues, mostly in the Comment and Sport sections; it gave me an outlet for those bad opinions, an opportunity to write outside of essays. A year later, I was the Deputy Comment Editor; a year more and I was Deputy Editor. It was great in my second year to be part of such a diverse and large society, as well as being responsible for a small part of the paper. As Deputy Editor, I’ve had a lot more to do (even if it looks like I’m not doing a lot) and had many more challenges. But it has completely been worth it. As everyone else will inevitably say in this issue, Epigram has been the best thing I’ve done at university. Apologies to my history tutors, but I’ve definitely spent more time on Epigram: writing, editing and sorting out the newspaper than anything else. It has given me wonderful friendships

Issue 297

15th February 2016


Student Newspaper

Epigram/ Sorcha Bradley

Adam Becket, Deputy Editor 2015-16: ‘It has been the best year of my life’

University of Bristol Independent



one third of students wouldn’t recommend

are increasing while standards decrease

The report based its conclusions on the security was also flagged up as responses of 854 students, the unacceptable. vast majority A quarter of students were of which were UK based unsatisfied with undergraduate the security systems in their students. Amongst other issues, accommodation, the main whilst 9 per cent of students findings were that a significant in the survey number claimed not to have a working of student properties have fire detectors. serious safety The report comes out at a time concerns, with 75 per cent of students when the finding university have ended their mould or damp in their guarantee of accommodation. university advertised accommodation Students voiced their frustration places at for first year undergraduate students. both the cost of letting agents Student and their house prices are also on the rise; lack of interest in resolving the average cost problems. of upfront charges, including deposits, ‘[I] rented a seven bedroom is £600. property These sorts of issues have left a through [letting agency] last third year, we were of students claiming that they would not charged ridiculous fees and there was recommend Bristol based on their horrendous damp which they experiences. refused to This figure is far higher for disabled do anything about,’ one students at student wrote. 47 per cent, although the number As well as the potential health issues of students of mould, in this category was very low. damp, and broken or leaking windows, home continued on page 3

Music Head to music for an alternative guide to freshers and tips on where to head out in Bristol

Page 48

Sport A roundup of La Vuelta, the last cycling grand tour this year

Page 53

‘Epigram was quite simply the best thing I did at uni.’ Rachel Hosie, Online Editor, 2014-15 ‘The opportunity to take on an alien new task has been really exciting, and made a lot less scary by the awesome people on both the Living and Senior editing teams.’ Will Soer, Living Editor, 2015-16 ‘Epigram was such a wonderful experience- it gave me so many opportunities and skills that definitely helped me get my job after uni!’ Laura Jacklin, News Editor, 2013-14 Number 153

Number 156

‘My memories of my time at Epigram can be summed up in two words: the puns. The headline I wrote for MENINGITIS an article on France - ‘Bordeaux-line crazy’ - is the OUTBREAK highlight of my life so far, and will remain so.’ UNDER Andrea Valentino, Deputy Travel Editor, 2013-14 CONTROL www.epigram.org.uk

Bristol University’s Independent Student Newspaper

FREE sausage roll for ever reader ! coupon page 8

Monday 3 November 2003

Bristol University’s Independent Student Newspaper

WIN FREE TICKETS ! competition page 9

Monday 19 January 2004

FREE COFFEE for every reader

Four Students Diagnosed – Antibiotics Distributed to all First Year Students

Alice Prendeville At the time of going to press it seems that the recent meningitis outbreak has been kept under control, largely thanks to the fast reaction from the university and the responsible actions taken by students. With no new cases reported for four days, and antibiotics having been distributed to those at most risk, it is fingers crossed that there will be no further spread of the infection.

SYMPTOMS: Information cards were handed out

Number 160

Number 156

Bristol University’s Independent Student Newspaper

turn to page 8

Photo: Craig Woodhouse

GET SET FOR YET FO MORE DEBT • Government plans dramatic fee hike • Union calls for emergency demo

Four University of Bristol students have been admitted to hospital over the past two weeks for treatment of bacterial meningitis. The University confirmed the infection as having reached outbreak status on Monday 27 October. Antibiotics were administered to over 3000 students and members of the University within



Number 137

in the Mix:

‘Getting involved in Epigram left me well1 finding a job, but my favourite equipped £for UNLUCKY 13 AS THROUGH ROOF thing about itTHE has toATTACKS be spending REVEALED “SOAR” the year getting to know fun new people - even if they did consistently try to drag me into Pam Pams.’ Rowena Ball, Travel Editor, 2014-15 Monday 2 February 2004 Bristol University’s Independent Student Newspaper

Bristol University’s Independent Student Newspaper

Monday 26 April 2004

ANY sandwich, baguette or roll. See page 22

Spice up Valentine’s Day Four Lovers’ Guide videos and DVDs up for grabs in our sexy competition Head for page 10 to enter

azing Am



THE number of student robberies and muggings has "soared" since the beginning of term according to the police.

Last week there were 13 robberies and muggings against students in the Redland sector alone.


Bristol University’s independent student newspaper

HANNAH BRADY News Reporter

University of Bristol’s Independent Student Newspaper

FEATURES: page 7 Perspectives

Bristol MP set to break fees pledge

Goldney JCR and Manor Hall Warden give their views on Fresher’s Week HANNAH CASLIN Ground Zero Conflict Is a ‘mosque’ blocks away from Ground Zero just too close?

ARTS: page 18 West End Thriller

We pick the best sets from this year’s festivals

FILM & TV: page 28 The Social Network

The new UCard system already up and running around the University precinct

Epigram picks out the film based on facebook legend Mark Zuckerberg in our Film Listings

SPORT: page 32 Watersports focus Epigram catches up with

the water polo team and the Girls’ rowing squad

Stem cell therapy suceeds for Bristol student Science Page 16-17

Flight fears, summer camps and British beaches Travel in E2 Pages 10-11

Monday 23rd January 2012

Bristol University’s Independent Student Newspaper Issue 249

• www.epigram.org.uk

What next for North Korea?


ARTS: page 19

Issue 238

during the student protests at the end of last year. Speaking to the NUS, Porter said that after “considerable soul searching”, he believed the NUS needed “invigorating” in order to continue its fight against what he called the “damaging marketization in education”. This contrasts with the message he had for students shortly after taking office in June 2010. Having won 65% of the vote, Porter said at the time: “I am delighted to be leading NUS into what will be a crucial year for further and higher education, with a general election, fees review and cuts on the horizon. It is more vital now than ever that we come together to put our issues at the top of the agenda with a credible, representative student voice shaping the outcomes of these pivotal debates”. By the end of the year, however, Porter was forced to admit to “spineless dithering” on the part of the NUS following their refusal to back some of the largest student demonstrations for a generation. Criticism has ranged from Facebook campaigns, such as “We the undersigned believe that Aaron Porter should be removed as NUS National President as he is unable to lead the student movement”, to comment in [Continued on page 2]

FEATURES: page 6 The meat issue

The rise of the video game

page 11

Our sporting talent is excelling, from football to skateboarding

page 27

LIFESTYLE: E2 page 2 The big student survey

Try guessing which nightclub Bristol’s most promiscuous girls go to - or read the answer in E2.

arrest. At 9:15pm officers closed Cheltenham Road and forced entry into the building. Four men were arrested, and a police statement confirmed that a number of items were seized “including petrol bombs – which are currently being forensically examined”. One of the men subsequently pleaded guilty to possession of a petrol bomb, but not guilty to a second charge of threatening a Tesco employee with it. Following the highly visible arrests at Telepathic Heights, hundreds of people began to congregate in the area. Within a few hours they were joined by over 160 riot officers, many brought in from Wales.

Although the gathering began peacefully, clashes with police soon erupted and spilled out into the surrounding area. Barricades of burning bins were erected; fireworks, bricks and bottles were thrown at riot officers. Local resident Alex Slocombe saw “running battles with police all over the place.” By around 1:00am it seemed that police were no longer in control of the operation. A group of rioters managed to ransack the recently opened Tesco Express. Its windows were smashed, a sign ripped off, and “closing down sale” scrawled across its facade. [Continued on Page 2]

Is feminism dead?

Interview with Marina & The Diamonds

page 10

page 23

Issue 259

SPORT: page 32 Bristol’s hidden stars

The Women’s Novice Rowing Squad tell us how they are going to annihilate UWE.

Bristol University’s Independent Student Newspaper

Sports clubs have reacted angrily after the university’s Director of Sport, Exercise and Health (SEH), Simon Hinks, circulated an email requesting captains of Bristol’s elite sports clubs to vote down an attempt to make sports more accessible. The motion at the students’ union’s Annual Members’ Meeting (AMM) aimed at reintroducing the pay as you go option for sports facilities at all times passed with 88% voting in favour. The pay as you go option was scrapped at the beginning of the year but reintroduced following a petition that attracted over 1500 signatures. continued on page 3

What can you buy for the price of a pint?

Battle of the botox Which reality soap makes the grade? Film & TV 29

Travel, e2

‘Meat-Free Mondays’ motion passed at AMM

Students are unhappy with noise levels and the closure of facilities.

Adam Bushnell News Reporter

Student Housing Special A motion was passed at this year’s students’ union AMM (Annual Members’ Meeting) to compensate the residents of Hiatt Baker Hall for the misery caused to them by ongoing construction work. The motion demanded a reduction in fees and improvement of living conditions for the hall’s students.

A large contingency of Hiatt Baker residents attended the AMM – in which the motion to compensate them was voted first in the priority ballot – only to leave as soon as it was passed with 85% voting in favour. Construction work for a new transport hub for all Stoke Bishop residents and the creation of an additional 339 bedrooms at Hiatt Baker Hall is well underway and is due for completion for the 2014 intake. But current Hiatt Baker residents are unhappy with their accommodation. In a letter of complaint to the university, Claudia

Summers, who proposed the motion, expressed her dissatisfaction. She described how the building works are ‘literally surrounding ABC blocks with a sea of mud, fences, metal barriers and diggers.’ ‘As you can imagine, this is not only aesthetically displeasing, it is also extremely claustrophobic and is not a place where anyone would want to live.’ She also said that advertised facilities such as the library, hairdressers, common room and bike storage have been closed and access to the hall has been restricted. continued on page 3

A motion to ban the sale of meat on campus on Mondays was narrowly passed at the students snion’s AMM (Annual Members’ Meeting). Many were disappointed that the motion was carried, with only 50% of students present voting in favour. The motion was designed to reduce the university’s environmental impact, with the proposer arguing that the world’s cattle consume enough food to sustain 9 billion people. But a student who had grown up in a family of sheep farmers argued against the proposal, claiming that we should instead concentrate on sourcing fresh, local meat. See page 3 for a summary of motions.

Ethical fashion fur better or worse? Style, e2

The survey – which has been taken by over 1.5m students since it launched in 2005 – is used to compile statistics relating to student satisfaction in eight areas: teaching, assessment and feedback, academic support, organisation and management, learning resources, personal development and overall satisfaction. This year the survey

with their union. Oxford University’s Student Union came joint last in the survey with their neighbour Oxford Brookes. ‘We are dedicated to ensuring that the [UBU satisfaction] score improves over the next few years. Unfortunately, students tend to focus on the building when they think of the Students’ Union and it

Revolution on the streets of Bristol

Mood turns against College Green occupiers

Ann Widdecombe visits Bristol

See Page 4

Former Conservative MP Ann Widdecombe visited Bristol University at the end of last month for an event organised by the Politics Society. In an exclusive interview with Epigram, she answered questions on topics ranging from the coalition to Strictly Come Dancing before addressing the public conference.

by universities by the deadline for Oxbridge applications. Figures in the south-west show the biggest fall in applications in over 30 years, with a decrease of 11.3% in comparison with last year. Sarah Thwaites, Deputy Chief Executive

Page 3

1000 votes cast in officer elections The election race for part-time Union Officers has come to a close after just 1000 student votes were cast in the week-long poll. The successful candidates for Union Officers, Senate Representatives and Student Trustees were announced following the following the first annual Students’ Conference.

by 6the Page

threat of debt. However, others have commented that part of the fall in applications this year compensates for the

Page 4

Lakota loses licence

Mature students in particular represented

‘require institutions to set themselves at least one target around broadening their entrant pool (up to now it has been possible for institutions to restrict their targets to broadening their applicant pool)’. Concerningly, the results of the report revealed that 60% of institutions agreed they could foresee difficulties with meeting widening participation targets in the future.

falling away from education for good. Page 8

A University of Bristol student News Editor has tragically died in ambiguous circumstances that may have resulted in him being crushed inside aGeorge bin Ferguson has secured a surprise lorry after a night out with a friend. victory in the race to become Bristol’s first Garrett Elsey - a 22 year old from ever directly elected mayor. Sherwood Park, Canada - had enrolled An architect with a penchant for red trousers, to start his Masters in International Ferguson is also a University of Bristol alumnus Security in the School of Sociology, and trustee of the Students’ Union. He beat Politics and International Studies other contenders to the position and left and had been in the UK just 14 one Labour candidate and favourite Marvin Rees day when the incident happened. trailing behind in second place. Elsey’s body was found by workers Bristol demonstrated its independent spirit at around 10.20am on Thursday 27th September at the New Earth by rejecting candidates from the main political Solutions centre - a recycling plant parties. in Avonmouth. Police cordoned In his mayoral victory speech Ferguson said off communal bins in nine areas that the vote represented ‘A new way of doing across Bristol whilst investigations things’ and that he did not see it as a vote for were conducted into how his body himself, but as a ‘Vote for Bristol’. could have ended up at the site. Ferguson is clear that he wants to make It is now believed he was picked Bristol continued on page 3 a city that will be recognised across the world. ‘I am fed up with explaining that Bristol is somewhere near Bath,’ he joked, before Are boobs news? declaring himself Bristol’s ‘Servant’ and saying The Page that people of all convictions and beliefs are equal in the city and should unite to improve Three Debate it. Page 11 There was rapturous applause when Ferguson talked about his desire to knock on the door of No. 10 to ask the Prime Minister for more powers and resources for Bristol. ‘We’ve delivered what they wanted, now they’ve got to deliver what we want,’ he said. Ferguson explained that he will give his Whilst many top universities formal acceptance speech on Monday at across the country have struggled to fill places on their courses Brunel’s this Temple Meads station, taking the year, Epigram has learned same that oath as young men of Athens once did the University of Bristol has been – ‘I shall not leave this city any less, but rather successful in increasing student greater than I found it’. numbers by over 600, bringing the The result was a bitter disappointment for total number of places available the Labour Party who had been confident to undergraduates to 4400. The increase follows changesthat in their candidate Marvin Rees could win the election. If elected, he would have been regulatory arrangements, permitting theoffirst Mayor of Afro-Caribbean descent in universities to increase the number places available for students achieving Europe. A-level grades of AAB or above. Rees was gracious in defeat, saying of the According to figures reported result ‘This is just democracy. This is just by The Telegraph, seven out of 24 the way it works.’ During his heartfelt and institutions in the elite Russell Group engaging speech he joked that his loosing continued on page 3 was better than any winning speech speech could have been. Exclusive interview The result was also disappointing for with Chairman Conservative of candidate Geoff Gollop and Lib British OlympicDem candidate Jon Rogers who came third Association and fourth respectively. It appears their votes collapsed as voters who would usually support Page 32 those parties looked elsewhere. continued on page 3


Features 10

25 Years of Epigram

O gan dona on campa gne W Pope has NYE hea ansp an

International students protest against new university monitoring

Around 30 students descended on Senate House last week to rally against the University’s monitoring of international students. The demonstration - which was part of a week of protests leading up the NUS National Demonstration this Wednesday - highlighted the concerns of Bristol’s international students who have been made to check in with their faculty on a monthly basis.A Bristol student’s wait for a new heart has Organisers of the event said the monitoring offinally ended after receiving a transplant on international students was a ‘violation of theseNew Year’s Eve. students’basichumanrights,aninsulttotheirhuman Will Pope, 20, whose story has captured the dignity, and an intrusion on their private lives’.attention of the nation after featuring in an The United Kingdom Border Agency (UKBA)ITV ‘Tonight’ documentary in November, had makes universities such as Bristol - which havebeen on the urgent transplant list since early been granted the right to sponsor visas forSeptember. Until the operation his health had been deteriorating with doctors saying that, international students - monitor the attendance without a transplant, he would have just weeks of their non-EU students to make sure theyto live. are actively participating in their studies. According to Will Pope’s mother, Rosie Pope, he is ‘taking steps in the right direction’. The

continued on page 3 situation remains positive, despite several

page 34

Pro-Life campaigners parade photos of dead babies on campus

Independent candidate George Ferguson has been voted Bristol’s first directly elected Mayor.

Campaigners from controversial pro-life group Abort67 brought their graphic displays of dead babies and aborted foetuses to the University of Bristol precinct at lunchtime on Friday 9th November. Their demonstration and use of imagery prompted complaints to the University from disgusted students. In retaliation, sabbatical officers from UBU launched a counter-protest, using a sign stating ‘This Union is pro-choice’ in an attempt to cover up the large graphic images that were erected on the pavement opposite Senate House. Student unions in Nottingham, Cambridge and Sussex have used similar tactics to limit the impact of Abort67 demonstrations, following visits to their campuses during the same week. continued on page 4


ace accommoda on fia co

S uden

Issue 257


setbacks and nervous moments for his family and friends since the operation. Will suffered a cardiac arrest on 5th January. On a blog set up to raise awareness for organ donation, Rosie Pope wrote that ‘Will had to be defibrillated and his heart massaged for half an hour. They pulled him back and put him on bypass.’ Will gradually took steps in the right direction and on 10th January he awoke to find he was the beneficiary of a new heart. His mother wrote that ‘Will has been through much. There is one certainty

Page 7

Keep Calm and Curry On

Using your erotic capital

Should women flirt their way to the top? An interview with Catherine Hakim

Monday 21st January 2013

Navigating mud pits and boys: Bristol students take part in the Sodbury Slog

Lakota has once again had its licence suspended, following a fatality earlier this year. The club, which first opened in 1989, has been the subject of much controversy this year since the death of 16-yearold Joe Simons on 30th April.

(continued on page two)

“ Personal development is all very well, but there is equally a moral responsibility to help develop the community



Monday 7th November 2011

The University of Bristol has a been significant drop in applications – there has awarded a £300,000 grant to study the been a decline of 22.7% in applicants aged development of the AIDS alongside between 30 and 39, and applicants aged the University of Cambridge and the over have seen a decrease of 27.8%. 40 and University of Wisconsin. It is hoped The NUS Vice President, Toni Pearce, said that researchers will be able to find ‘Theout significant reduction in applications why the disease only developed in the from mature students is a warning sign and 1970s even though it had been present Government needs to quickly take their in the human population for decades. concerns on board or else risk those people

Issue 252

‘Epigram was by far the best thing I ever did at university. It gave me a confidence boost and a real sense of purpose; Done rvan I made some great friends who I’m sure I’ll stay in touch in danger? with for many years to come.’ Emily McMullin, Deputy Features Editor, 2014-15 S uden

Issue 255

Bristol’s Mayor: ‘I am your slave’

Student numbers increased by 600

also asked students to rate their satisfaction with their union or guild. 260 universities and further education colleges across the UK took part in the survey and student satisfaction with UBU ranked in the bottom five, with just 45% of students agreeing that they were ‘very satisfied’ or ‘mostly satisfied’

Issue 242

rise in applications for places for 2011, when £300,000 awarded for UCAS saw 6.6% more applications than for AIDS research 2010.

Fresh or Mess?


Jemma Buckley

University of Bristol’s Student Union - which is currently undergoing Page3 >> renovation work - has received one of the lowest satisfaction ratings in the UK.

Jemma Buckley News Editor The results from the most recent National Student Survey (NSS) – released just before the start of term - show that only 45% of final year students are satisfied with the University of Bristol Students Union (UBU).


New Year, New You? e2

Bristol University’s Independent Student Newspaper

Bristol student found dead at recycling facility

Less than half of students satisfied with Union


Marek Allen

Votes cast in the Presidential election alone

contested. Sheherazade El-Sukhun was also elected to be the new Chair of the Student Council. One of the most fiercely competitive battles of the evening was between 16 candidates for only five national representative positions. Two members of the current sabbatical team, Chris Ruff and Dom Oliver, were amongst those elected to be delegates for the NUS Conference on 24 - 26 April. The two unsuccessful Presidential candidates, Josephine Suherman and Georgina Bavetta were also elected. Bavetta scored a higher percentage of the vote, pointing towards the eventual outcome of the Presidential election. Thomas Phipps was elected as the final University of Bristol national representative.


and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS),

to widen access to our University. The issue is financial accessibility. If students from ordinary backgrounds can’t afford to live in Bristol then these figures will not get better’. OFFA has responded to the figures by asserting that in future, more emphasis will be placed on the ability of universities to meet these set targets. They claimed that from 2012-13 they will

Film, p.31

Conservative Party’s youth wing) James Morton. Disagreement over Ellis’ suggestion of a conference on conservatism was so lengthy and ferocious that it led to firstly, “advice” from Morton to suspend discussing the conference and another planned event, an election briefing, until term started again. Lack of resolution to the conflict meant Ellis continued to organise

Monday 19th November 2012


Marek Allen


that her manifesto, which included ‘free gym classes’ and a ‘sauna in the gym’, were realistic. Pollak’s main aim for her forthcoming year at VP Sport was to get ‘more women involved in sport’. The fourth female candidate to

be successfully elected into the new Union sabbatical team was Alice Peck who ran unchallenged for VP Community. She was visibly upset at the Presidential result but later commented that she was ‘keen to work with anyone who the students of Bristol have elected’. Tom Flynn was elected as the new VP Education in an incredibly close two-candidate race. Flynn commented that he was ‘excited to make a genuine difference whilst representing Bristol students’. He expressed his surprise at the result, and stated that he ‘could not have run against a nicer person’. This year saw all Senate Representative positions filled, a vast improvement on last year, as only three of the part time positions were

even started. With a scaled down committee, the effectiveness of the society and whether or not there will be a functioning Conservative Association at all by the end of the year has been called into question by dissenting members. Conflict broke out during the summer after a showdown between the Chairman Simon Iles, Vice Chairman Ellis, and South West Regional Chairman of Conservative Future (the

Page 3 the number of applications received reveal

Record number of applications

new look e2

Interview with Mercury Prize winners Alt-J page 25

The best day trips in the South West e2

Issue 252

Marek Allen

‘The Olympics suck’ Will Self finds little reason for fanfare Features 11

The pains of campaigns Behind the scenes of student politics Features 10

relevant news from the Union. Hannah Pollak was elected as the new VP Sport gaining 1,761 votes in the most conclusive contest of the night. Pollak expressed her relief that ‘all the hard work paid off’. She maintained

Marek Allen

The Kings Arms pub, which is due to be turned into twelve student flats

would have liked to have an all female team. Berti continued saying, ‘I hope this year’s example will encourage more females to follow suit next year’. The most hotly contested fulltime position was Vice-President for Activities, as five candidates battled it out for the coveted role. Voting went all the way to the fifth round with no one candidate gaining the majority. Martha West eventually emerged victorious in this tense race, receiving 1,036 votes in the last round. West commented that she was ‘gobsmacked to be in charge of 200 societies’. Her main aim as the VP Activities for the forthcoming academic year is ‘fairer access to all societies’ and the dissemination of a ‘weekly newsletter’ detailing all the

Bristol students frolic in the snow in Brandon Hill, but exams will still go on as planned - page 4

There were a record number of(Financial Skills Partnership) shared of FSP applications for places at Bristol for herthe view on the situation. academic year beginning in 2011.‘Young In people in the south west may see light of the threefold rise in tuition fees apprenticeships as an attractive option due from 2012 many students did notto take rising university costs. They can be seen gap years in order to beat the mounting as part of the solution to bridge the so called cost of a degree. Bristol retained itsgap” identified by George Osborne.’ “skills place as one of the most appliedThe forfigures have given rise to allegations UK universities with an average that of 14 would-be students are being deterred applicants per place. from applying for further education

Undergraduates received bursaries and scholarships in 2009-10

the University of the West of England. The study also showed that Bristol has decreased its spending on widening participation – 20.2% of additional fee income was spent on bursaries, scholarships and outreach activities in the academic year 200910 – a 3.2% drop from 2006-7. Dr Wendy Piatt, head of the elite Russell Group of universities, rejected the claim that universities were wholly to blame for the inability to reach targets. ‘Misinformation, lack of confidence and misunderstandings about the costs and benefits of university education contribute to the under-representation of students from lower-income backgrounds’. However Students’ Union President Gus Baker reflected the issue back to university policy. ‘These figures show Bristol is struggling

Epigram takes a look at the best of the foreign music festivals happening this summer.

Monday 8th October 2012

25 years of Epigram

Controversy as sports head secretly lobbies ‘elite’ teams

Film review: “Sherlock Holmes greets us like a donner kebab after a heavy night out.”

Bristol University’s Independent Student Newspaper


Sarah Lawson Union establishes News Reporter presence on precinct

See page 16 for details


Hiatt Baker residents demand fee reduction to compensate for work


Overall The Students’ Union has opened its university applications for 2012 have dropped by 9% in the lead up to the new hub on campus. The Information tuition fee rise. According to official figures, Point takes the place of the old Natwest number of UK-born students applying building next to the Arts and the Social for the university places has fallen by 11.9%, Sciences Library. It aims to make withfor 52,321 student applications for 2012 Union’s services easier to access received students. Staff in the centre will be able by 15th October, compared to 59,413 to give advice on accommodation andrecieved by the same date in 2011. The statistics, provided by the Universities welfare as well as sports and societies.

Apply now to be a section editor for the academic year 2011-12

Monday 18th February 2013

Bristol University’s Independent Student Newspaper


TRAVEL: E2 page 10 Best foreign festivals

Love journalism? Want to be a part of the team that puts Epigram together?

All the information on the upcoming UBU elections. Voting takes place 14 - 18 March.

Issue 252

Issue 252

The secret agents of style

In the small hours of Friday 29th April violence broke out on the streets of Bristol for the second time in a eight days. ‘The troubles’, as one BBC reporter referred to them, first began a week before as the opening of a new Tesco sparked the worst riots seen in Bristol since 1980. On Thursday 21st, following a tip-off that occupants of the ‘Telepathic Heights’ squat on Cheltenham Road had been constructing petrol bombs, police moved into make an


Are sex strikes women’s best political weapon? page 9

Who are the University of Bristol’s most noteworthy students? Nominate now.

The opening of a new Tesco store in the Stokes Croft area of Bristol sparked riots against police during the Easter break.

A look at the inspiration TRISTAN MARTIN behind some of the latest News Reporter blockbusters including Black Swan and Inception

Porter said that after “considerable soul searching”, he believed the NUS needed “invigorating”


Alice Young News Editor

BE FAMOUS: page 16 The Epigram 40 is back!

Interviews, street style and the best shoes: the Fashion section does Bristol’s boys

Bristol’s best pubs, what to do on St Patrick’s Day and the best events this fortnight

A searingly honest look at the ups and downs of running a Marathon for charity.

The University of Bristol has been named in an OFFA (Office for Fair Access) report as one of 23 English universities that are failing to meet set targets for widening participation. The group, which includes the Universities of Cambridge, Durham and Warwick, failed to meet self-set statistical targets regarding the number of applicants coming from disadvantaged backgrounds in 2009-10. Institutions were asked to report on their targets regarding under-represented students, defined by OFFA as students from low socio-economic groups, low income backgrounds, some ethnic groups, and disabled students. OFFA has not revealed the universities’ individual targets, however the percentage of Bristol undergraduate students receiving bursaries and scholarships in 2009-10 stood at 17.4% of the fee-paying student population, in contrast to 12.9% at Cambridge, and 37.8% at

What can you expect from next year’s sabbatical team? President-elect Gus Baker puts his promises down on paper.

Issue 252



since the summer when controversy erupted over a proposed conference idea from a committee member. BUCA claims one of its objectives to be representing Conservative University of Bristol students as well as promoting the Conservative Party in Bristol. However three committee members have resigned with their positions still vacant and Vice-Chairman, Aaron Hugh Ellis, resigned, it has been revealed, before this academic year had


COMMENT: page 10 The new Union team

FASHION: E2 pages 6-9 The male edition

50 years of 007 - James Bond special

Best household gadgets page 31

page 29


Comment, p.14

Have Slow Club found Paradise?

Does our generation not take sexual health seriously enough? Features investigates the nitty gritty part of SEX.

WHAT’S ON: E2 page 12 Epigram’s new section

FILM & TV: page 27 Hollywood and history

Monday 10th October 2011

FEATURES: page 6 A check up down below

Should Britain export weapons to countries with questionable human rights records?

SPORT: page 30 Marathon Man

It has been confirmed that the Univeristy of Bristol will charge students three times the current fees from 2012.

COMMENT: page 11 Arms for Africa?

Russell Kane reviewed Epigram delivers our verdict on his stand up performance

SPORT: page 29-32 Bristol’s successes

Issue 240

NEWS: page 3 £9,000 fees for Bristol

The Arts and Social Sciences Library is due for further work on its upper two floors, to be completed by mid-2011

Epigram examines how meat eating is having devastating effects on the environment, and how you can help

Epigram talks to famous designer label PPQ Fashion E2 Page 9

Tristan Martin

e2 Lifestyle

Death of the jelly baby and other fun experiments Science Page 14


Election run-up: “A televised debate will favour the candidate that is better airbrushed.”

University of Bristol’s Independent Student Newspaper

University of Bristol’s Independent Student Newspaper Monday May 9th 2011

NEWS: page 3 £1 million refurbishment

‘Through Epigram I’ve found what I really love doing while meeting the most amazing friends.’ Hannah Price, Deputy Online Editor, 2015-16

Julia May

Home, sweet home Interior design for the student house

After a highly competitive fortnight of campaigning and controversies, Paul Charlton has emerged victorious in the battle for UBU President. The eagerly anticipated student election results were announced on Friday 16 March to the captivated crowds in Bar 100. Charlton’s effective ‘Why Gamble?’ campaign made him a visible presence on campus. His election manifesto also stressed his desire that, ‘The Union should be there to help you, not something to battle against’. The new President-Elect emphasised the importance of clarity between University of Bristol students and their Union, saying that ‘everyone deserves to know what is happening at their Union’. In what was seemed to be a surprising turn of events, Presidential candidate Josephine Suherman, was the first to exit the race. Suherman was removed from the running in the second round after only scoring 784 votes. Charlton eventually won with 1,736 votes, compared to Georgina Bavetta’s 1,333 when second and third preferences were also included. Charlton expressed surprise at his victory, saying that he had ‘entertained no expectations’. Immediately after winning, Charlton thanked his fellow Presidential candidates and his dedicated campaign team. The new six member full-time sabbatical team includes four female Vice-Presidents, reversing the usual trend of a male-dominated group. There was as least one female candidate for every full-time UBU position. The new VP for Welfare and Equality, Alessandra Berti, commented that she Yisan Cheong

the Highbury Residents Association. Mark Wright, a Councillor for the area, has said that, ‘The surrounding area of High Kingsdown is already well over 50% students and what the area needs is more balance in its demographic rather than more transient residents.’ Concerns coming from residents are focused on anxiety over the negative atmosphere that students may bring to the area in the form of noise, rubbish and late night parties. Dr Julie Clayton said ‘We need more young families who can attend local schools – and walk to school rather than driving from a distance. ‘We need owner-occupiers who are going to care for each other and the neighbourhood and support a mixed sustainable community.’ Response from students has defended their reputation, with one student saying ‘I am saddened that students are being depicted in this negative way.’ Another has claimed that ‘It is no less discriminatory to suggest that students make bad neighbours than to say ethnic minorities or those dependent on social welfare make bad neighbours.’ Those who do not support local objections have argued that students can benefit a community and that other residents can also be held responsible for noise levels and litter. In an online comment, one resident has said ‘I appreciate the important contribution students make to the community. ‘The shops, cafes and pubs in the area would close down without them.’ Although consultations regarding the plans to convert the pub have finished, the decision will not come before the committee until next month.

• www.epigram.org.uk

HANNAH STUBBS News Reporter In-fighting and subversion have plagued the Bristol University Conservative Association (BUCA)

Jemma Buckley

Jessica Wingrad News Reporter

Monday 19th March 2012

Jenny Awford Deputy News Editor

• High Kingsdown locals call the area a ‘student ghetto’ • Ice rink closed to make way for student housing amidst protests (see page 2)

Local residents in High Kingsdown have expressed strong opposition to plans for a local pub to be converted into twelve new student flats. The pub, The Kings Arms, could potentially be reorganized to house fifty students into ‘cluster flats’ which would not require any rebuilding to take place on the site. The High Kingsdown development is an award-winning area of Bristol built in the 1970s, where local residents take pride in their vibrant, friendly community. The location is extremely desirable for University of Bristol students since it is under ten minutes’ walk from Woodland Road and other major university buildings. Residents fear that the area is becoming a ‘student ghetto’ where the peace of the neighbourhood will be disturbed by students creating ‘an uncared-for area, a mess of litter, overflowing rubbish bins and front gardens looking like tips, not to mention noise’ as Linda Ewles, of Tyndall Park Mews, put it. An anonymous resident who has been living in High Kingsdown for 25 years said ‘I think it is outrageous. ‘There are already a large number of students here, which makes it a transient population. This development, with so many more students, would swamp the place with them.’ As well as objections online from local residents, there have been concerns voiced by the Kingsdown Conservation Group, the Bristol Civic Society and

Charlton elected UBU President

Medical experiments Should students take THOM LOYD part in clinical trials? Senior News Reporter

How to climb Kili An idiot’s guide to this summer’s RAG climb of Mount Kilimanjaro

A student protests against the increase in tuition fees proposed by the coalition

Music, p.26-27

The arrested students were held by the Danish police for eight hours, with little or no access to water, food or a toilet. The police used systematic violence, pepper spray and, in some cases, cavity searches to subdue approximately three hundred detained protesters. All those arrested were released without charge or justified explanation for their arrest. All six students’ full personal details, however, were retained by the Danish police. December’s UN Conference on Climate Change was pitted to formalize a global response to the now broadly recognized reality of devastating man-made climate change. The aim of the Conference was to extend and expand 1997’s Kyoto Protocol, its aims being to construct a deal that recognises the ‘ecological debt’ the West owes the

Violent clashes fails to meet applications ‘When I think of Epigram, itBristol brings back UCAS a range in Stokes Croft fair access targets for 2012 fall by 9% of emotions. Tiredness; frustration; but also friendship, from the wonderful people I met through it, and pride - that we created a fantastic publication. I’ll never forget the rush of seeing my name in print for the first time.’ Alex Bradbrook, Deputy Editor, 2013-14 FEATURES: page 7

TRAVEL: E2 page 10

Georgina Winney

Student housing plans upset locals


Conflict sees Conservative Future intervene in BUCA

Issue 236

Hooters causes concern The editor responds to our letter of the fortnight

Interview: Coco Sumner on CDs and Cheryl Cole Lifestyle E2 Page 2

Upcoming bands: Epigram Music give their alternative tips for 2010

BUCA comittee showdown sees three resign

University of Bristol’s Independent Student Newspaper

NUS President says change is needed

EDITORIAL: page 13

continued on page five

Bristol University’s Independent Student Newspaper

KIRSTY REID JON WILTSHIRE News Reporters Four University of Bristol students were arrested, and one detained, on Sunday 13 December at the United Nations (UN) Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen. Among those arrested from the University of Bristol were Kester Reid, Giacomo Ciriello and Nikolas Kouloglou. As part of the same incident, another student, Jon Wiltshire, was detained by police as well as friend and University of York student, Daphne Barkshire, also arrested with the group.

Issue 230 Monday March 7th 2011

NEWS: page 2

Panache to close The popular venue faces closure due to allegations of violence and drugs

Students, Aaron Porter, has announced Monopoly on the media he will not be standing again come the next election. The announcement Murdoch’s Sky takeover comes after a tough few months for should be blocked on Porter, who has been heavily criticised grounds of plurality by some students for his failure to act

Do letting agencies get away with murder? Issue 245

University of Bristol students held by Danish police without food or water

COMMENT: page 10The President of the National Union of

After regaining his Bristol West seat in the May 2010 General election, on a platform opposing increases in university fees, Stephen Williams MP is set to renege on his promise. In his campaign Williams argued, “I believe that a student’s potential should not be limited by their ability to pay. Many students will be starting their working lives with a debt of over £20,000. This is unacceptable and unsustainable”. However, just six months later it has been implied that Williams may now vote in favour of an increase in tuition fees. The 12th October saw the publication of Lord Browne’s review, discussing the removal of a cap on tuition fees. This has led the public to question whether the Lib Dems will go back on their pledge not to increase fees. Williams defended these accusations, “The pledge claims that we should work towards a fairer system, and that’s exactly what I signed up for’’. Williams also claimed, “The Browne report is far better than it would have been now that the Liberal Democrats are in office, it offers a much more progressive payment system than we have, but it’s only a starting point. I feel we can do better than Browne has done already’’. Williams, along with other prospective MPs signed the NUS pledge pre-election stating, “We will vote against any increase in fees in the next parliament, and we will put pressure on the Government to introduce a fairer alternative to variable top-up fees”. Bristol students are outraged that the Liberal Democrat party position may change in light of the coalition agreement, and have created an online petition in order to convince Williams to “hold firm to the pledge upon which he was elected”. When asked if the Lib Dems would be making a U-turn on their pledge Williams answered, “I am in weekly contact with Vince Cabell, Secretary of State, and David Willets, Minister for Higher Education, on how the coalition can enable.. [Continued on Page 2]

Will Deathtrap be able to compete with the London musical scene?

MUSIC: page 25 Festival highlights

Interview: Fearne Cotton talks to Epigram Lifestyle E2 page 3

Film, p.32

Future graduates could leave university with debts of over £80,000

Issue 221 Monday 11 January 2010

Flickr: spartacusxx

reported every month. Including the two recent break-ins, there have been nearly as many burglaries in the past six months as in the entire 2008-2009 academic period. The Security Service claim that several of the offences may have been committed by the same group of offenders as the burglaries tend to follow a similar pattern. They rank Badock and Hiatt Baker Hall, both

Bristol University’s independent student newspaper

Students brutalised in Copenhagen

Photo : Tristan Martin

thing will let them in: it was the little top window they smashed to get into my room.” When asked how the University of Bristol Security Services responded to the burglary, Williamson was positive. “They were really good. They arrived within ten minutes and rang the police. I was really happy with that.” University students have been particularly vulnerable to burglaries this year, with an average of four

The best of the rom-coms: As Valentine’s approaches, Epigram selects the best cheese from the DVD shelf

in the Mix


Issue 228 Monday November 8th 2010

NEWS: page 2 £10,000 tuition fees

COMMENT: page 10

Bristol band features: Epigram Music looks at Bristol bands, Zun Zun Egui and Fitness Club Fiasco

Fashion tip-offs for 2010

Photo: Jonathan Taphouse

belongings, including laptops, mobile phones and iPods were stolen. The criminals responsible for the most recent burglaries are still at large. Jonna Williamson, one of the residents who had his ground floor room in Wills Hall broken into, told Epigram, “I had my Mac [laptop computer] stolen. I thought I was pretty careful, I always locked my door and window. Even the smallest

last month and that “figures have soared since last year. Tom Wey, a third year computer science student was robbed in Cotham last Monday at midday. He was walking up Cotham Brow into University when he was hassled by two boys of about 17 or 18 years old. Both boys were riding BMX bikes and wearing big coats and hats and started shouting at him. Tom said: "The two boys started pushing me. I basically did what they said because I didn't know if they had a knife and I didn't know if they were going to beat me up. I couldn't get away anyway as they had cornered me with their bikes." The boys asked him if he had a mobile phone, and when he denied that he owned one, they searched his pockets. When they asked where his wallet was, they took his bag, which held his wallet, CDs and headphones, a folder with university work and a book. Of the 13 students mugged last week, 9 were male and in the majority of cases, it was wallets and mobile phones that were stolen. The attacks have all been concentrated in student residential areas; in Redland area Cotham and Clifton. PC Taylor says usually Tuesday nights are a peak time for attacks because this is when many clubs hold student nights. Sheila Docherty, Welfare Officer said, "Guys think that they are invincible and that they have to look after girls. But more men are likely to be mugged. "Robberies are not just taking place at night. They are also occurring during the day. Students must be careful all the time.”

Photo : Tom Wills Photo: Tristan Martin

KissMob takes place on Woodland Road in the run-up to Sexploration Week - page three

perform. Features, p.10 vast university cut backs in other Despite areas, £800,000 has been spent on the introduction of the UCard. Jerry Woods, Head of Security, is confident that this is a good investment, stating that “[The new system] will pay for itself in around five years and thereafter will save the University money year-on-year,” although he admits that it does sound like a lot of money. The cost and scope of subsequent phases, however, is still uncertain as it is subject to the University’s approvement of funds. The current variety of access devices that are installed across the precinct make it impossible for building access to be monitored from the 24-hour control room. The UCard will increase campus security by unifying access systems, making it easier for the Security Services to supervise. Installation of exit readers means that cards will also be required to leave buildings – dealing with theft resulting from criminals tailgating someone into the building and then simply walking back out with stolen property. The UCard is also designed to increase efficiency for students and staff. The student Music, p.26, and p.28 staff databases, building access, Library and Sports systems are integrated, and the new photo upload facility reduces time and paperwork for both students and staff. The next phase in the project will look at extending the functions of the UCard into areas like lecture attendance record keeping, printing, exams authentication, cashless vending/catering, parking and bus transport. There is potential for it to be used to facilitate e-voting, which may boost turnout for the Student Elections.

Photo: Tristan Martin

Photo: Megan Stodel

LUKE BURNS Deputy News Editor

Page 18

News Reporter

One year on: What By do the end of October 2010, all staff and students will have a new university ID card students think – the UCard. Replacing current ID cards with of last year’s the UCard is the first phase of a 5 year project designed to increase security and efficiency ASS library across the university by unifying access systems developments? and widening the functions that ID cards can

Burglaries claim new victims at Wills Hall Two violent break-ins at Stoke Bishop halls have resulted in the loss of hundreds of pounds of electrical equipment. Student residents at Wills Hall have become victim to burglary as the windows of their rooms were smashed open and their valuable

£800,000 spent on new UCards

Issue 223 Monday 8 February 2010

Rodent infestation in ASS

A rodent infestation in the Arts and Social Sciences Library has been confirmed and students are being warned that eating whilst studying is encouraging the furry visitors. The mice were discovered approximately two weeks ago and are believed to have been attracted by food and drink taken to the first and second floors by students. Caroline Clancy, University press officer, told Epigram that the University immediately contacted pest control firm Rentokil who are dealing with the problem and insist

Page 13

University of Bristol’s Independent Student Newspaper

in The Mix

HANNAH STUBBS Head News Reporter

By Katherine Hyde

Crime prevention officer PC Martin Taylor says that there has been a "massive growth" in incidents against students in the

� Victim: Tom Wey at the scene of the attack

Monday October 11 2010


that cleaning staff are “ensuring that all surfaces such as keyboards and desks are continually cleaned and that any traces of food or drink are removed quickly.” The University does appear to be taking hygiene issues more seriously as hand sanitizer has since appeared next to some of the computer terminals in the library “to ensure extra cleanliness” but students are still right to be concerned. As the leaflets informing students of the pest problem that appeared in the ASS library on Monday 1 February point out, “this is a serious matter as mice are responsible for the spread of many diseases including Salmonellosis and Gastroenteritis, and hosts to mites, ticks, tapeworm and fleas.” Katie Bitten, first year history student and library user, commented that the idea of mice in the library was “disgusting, especially as they sell food just downstairs”. continued on page six



Epigram takes a look at the real story behind homelessness in Bristol — Features, page 25

Valentine’s recipes to woo Storm Model Competition Renee’s Valentine’s advice

Food banned from study areas as pest control informed about library’s rodent infestation

BRISTOL STUDENTS are bracing themselves for yet another addition to their debt problems as hall fees are set to rise by 9.9 per cent in time for the 2004/2005 academic year. Students’ Union representatives were powerless to prevent the hike which means that hall fees have increased by 25 per cent over the last two years. TURN TO PAGE 2

Photos: Jeremy Harper

in the Mix:


Shortlisted for The Guardian and The Independent Media Awards 2001

Epigram investigates facts behind international story Students left facing even more debt trouble as hall fees go...

• The truth behind first-year’s virginity auction media scam • Friends and lover provided ideas for publicity

Decoration inspiration Revision poster

Monday 11 February 2002

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Epigram talk to Bombay Bicycle Club - page 23


Editor Will Soer

Online Editor Maya Colwell

Deputy Editor






Ellie Donnell

Epigram Living Section 2015/16

Is the hangover still worth it? Students are now increasingly turning away from the hedonistic drinking culture that used to define University life. Flora Beverly explains why our new found appreciation for education and health has spurred a sober generation Walking through the university gym at 5pm, picking my way over groups of people on the floor, it’s difficult not to notice the number of groups of girls doing a similar sort of workout. With sweaty faces and various weights laid out beside them, it’s easy to tell they too have joined the biggest female fitness community – Kayla Itsines’ Bikini Body Guide. And of course there are no weights left on the rack for me to start week 12. Back at home at the end of the day, I ask my friend what she has planned for the evening. Contrary to what outsiders might expect of a uni student with no current deadlines, her response doesn’t involve any drinking, or even staying out late. 10pm bedtime after a home cooked dinner is her day-off plan.

As a nation, the UK has been decreasing alcohol consumption since 2002 So why is this? Why are more and more people eschewing getting ‘hammered’ and passing out for early beds and the gym? At our weekly athletics socials, the number of people who are not drinking because they have a race, or a deadline, or simply because their body needs a rest is amazing. This isn’t to say that our socials are boring and quiet and it’s certainly not saying that everyone is tee-total, but it’s hard not to notice that certain people are getting more ‘sensible’ with their drinking habits. As a nation, the UK has been decreasing alcohol consumption since 2002, and despite what the Daily Mail might have you believe, alcohol sales peaked way back in 2004 and have been falling since then. A YouGov study showed that in the UK, ‘one third (33 per cent) of those surveyed have cut down on their alcohol consumption in the past year with a further 10 percent saying they have given up alcohol completely.’

In addition, ‘the proportion of young adults (16-25) who reported that they do not drink alcohol at all [increased] between 2005 and 2013.’ The stats go some way to explaining people’s views towards alcohol and drinking. 44 per cent of those surveyed agreed that alcohol is bad for your health – perhaps a surprisingly small amount, but a start nonetheless. Speaking to some friends who don’t drink much, I asked why they had decided to cut back on alcohol. The answers could be split into two categories: maximising productivity and the ever increasing view that being drunk is unattractive. It seems that with the increasing pressures of today, taking a day off for a hangover, or even just working at a suboptimal level is an unacceptable side-effect of drinking. As one person put it, ‘it’s just unconducive to life’. If you think about it, spending £9,000 a year on fees for a university education means that every wasted moment costs money – money many people cannot afford. I believe more people are viewing university as an opportunity, not just academically, but also with everything else university has to offer, such as sports. One friend stated that the choice of drinking or not drinking was all down to priorities. “Drinking leads to many attractive traits, such as… increased confidence and relaxation, but for me these are outweighed by the negatives.” For her, these include consequences to fitness and health and understandably, anyone who takes their health seriously is not going to go out drinking to dangerous levels on a regular basis. The second category I came across about why people don’t drink is one that denotes changing views of drunkenness. Interestingly, attitudes towards drinking in society vary across countries, regardless of the amount of alcohol consumed. In the UK, Scandinavia, US and Australia, drinking is associated with violent and antisocial behaviour, whereas in the Mediterranean and some South American cultures, drinking is viewed as peaceful and sociable.

Edwin Land

In the UK, US and Australia, drinking is associated with violent, antisocial behaviour, whereas in the Mediterranean it is viewed as peaceful and sociable

Therefore perhaps it is not surprising that the way drunkenness is viewed has changed temporally as well as spatially. The view of a drunken man or woman, especially if they are young, is seen as unattractive, and somewhat tragic, in the same way that anyone out of control is negatively viewed. The time that I started to notice youths taking more care of their health admittedly came from a slightly skewed portion of the population. I got my fitness Instagram when I was 17 and saw a growing community of girls (and many guys), making health and fitness a high priority in their lives – much more so than (thought often alongside) popularity and partying. However, looking around me in school, then home, then university

Have you got a perspective on student life in Bristol? Whether it’s because of your experiences since joining the uni, your background, or your tastes, we would love to hear about it! It’s also useful if you want something to put on your CV... If you have any ideas for articles then please come and say hello on Facebook (join the ‘Epigram Living 2015-2016’ group) or email living@epigram.org.uk

gyms, I saw the change spreading outside of Instagram into the ‘real world’. Smiling at early 20-somethings running on the downs, we share a moment of recognition of the other’s effort to look after their body.

Getting your endorphins pumping starts a positive feedback loop of self-improvement Because let’s be honest – when you’re stressed with work and tired from everyday life, sometimes running is the last thing you want to do. But making the effort to get out, get some fresh air and get the endorphins pumping starts a positive feedback loop of selfimprovement, that clearly is starting to take effect on more than just those who might consider themselves ‘fit-freaks’ or amateur athletes. Living a healthy lifestyle is truly becoming accessible for all. For me, reducing the amount I drink on a weekly basis has been a natural progression – if I have training planned, or a deadline, or really anything that requires full functioning of my brain or body the day after a night out, chances are I won’t drink (much). It’s surprisingly simple – and I’m a social sec! So where is the drinking culture at universities moving to now? I think that looking at social media accounts can give a good clue as to what is considered ‘cool’, and what certain attitudes are. Gone are the days of ‘heroine chic’ stick thin models - now it’s all about fitness and health, or at least looking like you’re fit. Social media celebrities such as Kayla Itsines or Jen Selter are not going out of fashion any time soon, so perhaps the view that fit is good is here to stay. And with it is going to be the rise of the ‘sensible youths’ – earlier bed times, less alcohol, better nutrition, more fitness. I’m yet to find a university that’s filled more with fit-freaks than drunk freshers, but I have no doubt that that’s the direction it’s moving in. Maybe it’s about time for a bigger university gym.



Our Top Spots in Bristol

This year we’ve been comissioning writers to eulogise their favourite Bristolian spot, some practical, some personal. Molly Rose Fish and Johnny Thalassites‘s articles represent two very different ways one can love a place. Spot #1: The Sea Walls viewpoint on The Downs, by Molly There is a strange, numinous beauty to the Sea Walls viewpoint on The Downs, Bristol. It is here that I’ve spent hours over the past twelve months, staring out towards the Clifton Suspension Bridge, Avon Gorge and Leigh Woods. If I had the time and energy, I’d incorporate mindfulness practises into my daily routine by visiting this location, gazing beyond my mind’s curious beliefs concerning how limited life is when you’re an undergraduate (one is expected to participate in certain activities with a level of enthusiasm that they’d seem strange not possessing and complete essays that they’ve little interest in because that’s what their course requires of them etc.), reflecting on my blessings and in what ways my present life is meaningful to me (I must always have an answer to this latter quandary). My head has always been somewhat in the clouds, but only recently have I discovered how mentally beneficial I find pausing and looking up at the sky. I don’t consider my beliefs about life’s limitations when I stand high above the River Avon, watching the sunset over Portishead; I see the opportunity to live my life fully and unrestricted, whatever that will come to mean for me.

I cannot emphasise enough how remarkable an effect walking over The Downs at sunset, via the Sea Walls viewpoint, has on me.

Spot #2: The Balloon Bar, by Johnny Even now, I am nervous. Nervous and furtively glancing to my left and to my right, lest anybody I know spots me writing this piece. You see, I am in the act – here, at my desk waiting to be caught in the act! – of saying something hideously unpopular. Yes, the SU’s Balloon Bar is bloody brilliant. It is an ungainly thing, an inconvenient thing, a ghastly thing in so many ways. It is tucked away towards Clifton, deep in the recesses of the ‘largest purpose-built SU in the country’, almost an outpost of student life. I get all of that, I really do. But delve a little deeper and it is a gem. Bored of cooking? Broke? The SU has the cheapest, quickest (and in many cases, even the tastiest) food anywhere near the University of Bristol. Fed up of Spoons? Broke? The SU has the cheapest, boldest and bravest (yes, selling drinks for under £3 in full-view of Clifton’s curtain-twitchers is brave) drinks anywhere near the University of Bristol. Nothing on TV? Broke? The SU holds a weekly pub quiz, a weekly karaoke night and a host of other

Molly Rose Fish

I’ve often heard ‘exercise’ be prescribed to those suffering from depression or anxiety disorders, as it allows one to release some of their pent up energy in a positive and physically beneficial way. Personally, as someone who is in recovery from mental illness, I cannot emphasise enough how remarkable an effect walking over The Downs at sunset, via the Sea Walls viewpoint, now has on me. When walking beneath the Bristol sky ablaze with fiery colours, broken only by long trails of cloud, clutching my iPhone and listening to a playlist I’ve previously curated to accompany this extraordinary scene, I feel at one with myself. It’s a peaceful, warm and romantic feeling that I was incapable of experiencing in the midst of my depression; it indicates that I’m healing. If you’ve yet to wander around The Downs, I recommend that you set aside some time to do so before the end of this academic year. After a day spent in the ASS library, consider charging your iPhone or MP3, putting on some comfortable footwear and unwinding to one of the most naturally beautiful backdrops Bristol has to offer.

events. If you just pretended all this was unconnected to the SU, and therefore unconnected to the university’s all-seeing eye, you would already be raving about it. It is this prejudice I am trying to disavow you of. There are a myriad of reasons to visit the SU’s Balloon Bar. In fact, if you are near Queen’s Road or the Victoria Rooms, which from the 16 bus is unavoidable, it is not even that far.

The SU has the cheapest, boldest and bravest drinks anywhere near the UoB I know I will not convince all of you, but if even one of you beautiful people reads this and trusts my verbose, sporadic judgments on the pages of Epigram Living, I have succeeded. I promise that you will not regret it, just give the Balloon Bar a chance.

An Anti-Ode To Lizard Lounge I do not like that Lizard Lounge, That grotty place where locals scrounge.

You talk about your cheesy tunes Yet lads there still act like baboons.

I will not go there “For the gals”.

It’s packed so full of sweaty men Who’ve been there time and time again.

I’d rather pay an entrance fee Than dance to fucking C’est La Vie.

I will not go there As a dare. I will not go there This, I swear.

There’s so much that I’d rather do Than line up in that sweaty queue.

I will not go there If you paid. I will not go there I’m afraid.

I will not go there Any day. I will not go there Anyway. Those toffee shots won’t get you drunk, No matter how many you’ve sunk.

I went there once in Fresher’s week, I’d never seen a place so bleak

No matter how much booze I’ve drank The music there is always wank.

With people sicking with a heave I knew that I, at once, must leave.

I will not go there That’s my pact. I will not go there That is fact.

I will not go there With my pals.

If Mr.Brightside’s not your thing I’d give this awful club a swing.

The one quid Fosters taste like piss I’m giving Lounge tonight a miss. And so should you my bosom chum, ‘cause Lizard Lounge is full of scum. penned by Lucas Oakeley

Editor Izzie Fernandes


Deputy Editor Tom Horton

Online Editors Issy Montgomery; Becky Scott



Join us at: Epigram Food Section 2015/16

Follow us at: epigramfood

And it’s Omelette O’Clock

A quick revision dinner or an elaborate Sunday brunch, there’s always time for an omelette.

Izzie Fernandes

It has now become crystal clear why omelettes were my parents’ dream Sunday evening dinner choice. What my seven year old self couldn’t see was these eggy parcels are simple, effortless, healthy and best of all, cheap as chips (without the excessive amount of salt and hydrogenated fat)! So, when faced with the reality of cooking three meals a day for myself, it did not take me long to realise that I needed not simply to learn to tolerate omelettes but to love them. It was this that taught me the importance of the toppings. Looking back, it was never the fluffy egg that actually bothered me so much as the overused and unexciting ham and cheddar combination which always ended up on my plate. But why be so restricted? When you think about it an omelette is just a blank slate and once you use your imagination the possibilities are endless. Before this becomes overly metaphorical or worse, I break into song, here are a couple my favourite topping choices which have revolutionised my omelette experience. Spinach and feta is a fantastic go to. Two ingredients and yet a wonderful combination of flavours. If you’re feeling fancy shoving a chopped spring onion and a sprinkle of chilli flakes into the egg mixture before you cook it also works a treat. Mushrooms are a great addition anywhere really since they soften up fast and that cooked mushroom flavour does add a sensational twist with the spinach. If you have them knocking around, a sprinkle of seeds in or on top of an omelette can also be game changing. The best yet though, has to be an experiment that I did last week...Red Onion, Spinach and Goats cheese omelette. Wow, it tasted good. That said we did not splash out on ingredients at all. I shoved an onion on a baking tray with some oil and chilli for 15 mins beforehand. This was possibly 5 minutes too long judging by the slightly charcoalled look of the picture- it has to be said though, this did add a sweetness and a pleasant crunch!

Deliciously Ella is back...

Goats cheese I discovered is also no more expensive than feta and since it’s creamier, I used less of it, leading me to believe I have found a cheaper and more luxurious option to feta! Now for the most exciting food discovery of our week; frozen spinach. Where usually a good handful of fresh spinach is needed to bulk out just one omelette, in this case, six balls of frozen spinach from a £2, 1kg bag of the stuff did the trick perfectly. I microwaved it for three minutes, shoved it into the pan with the onions and goats and it actually bulked the omelette out better than the fresh stuff does. So, having now totally changed my mind about omelettes, I went on my way well fed and with a happy bank balance - the perfect lunch experience!

Izzie Fernandes

Not just another Source Cafe

And Julia Pritchard tells us what she has in in store for your newest health boost... has healthy Double Chocolate Cheesecake Brownies is a winner, in my opinion. As with most of Deliciously Ella’s recipes, the food is not the cheapest option out there due to its vegan nature. With pricier and less widely available diet substitute items such as cacao powder, tamari and nutritional yeast cropping up frequently in her recipes, it may not be the ideal option for a budgeting student However, the other ingredients are almost all vegetables or grains, such as quinoa or lentils which all tend to be a very cheap, especially i f bought in bulk or even in frozen to cater t o a student budget and easily found i n supermarkets. Her paella for example, which serves four works out at just £1.60 a person if you apply Sainsburys pricing. I think you’ll agree that total makes going on a spree in Holland & Barrett for almond butter and tahini at the start of term far more forgiving. All in all, if you’re a Bristol health foodie or want to get in shape for summer, then get buying. This book will be a staple in your collection for years to come, especially with the popularity of health foods and fitness only increasing. However, while a Winter Kale salad after a long stressful day in the library may be appealing to many, if you’d rather drown your sorrows in a vat of pasta with cheese, bacon and all, then this may not be the book for you.

Becki Murray

Becki Murray

With the glimpses of sunshine this week a reminder that summer is fast approaching, there really is no better time to put that January health-kick (which inevitably faded after a few days) back into action. This season, however, we’re armed with a new power cookbook from Deliciously Ella, whose recipes we are sure will help you take those boring salads and soups from drab to fab. The number one British health-guru of our generation, Ella Woodward or ‘Deliciously Ella’ as we know her has returned with her second book: Deliciously Ella Every Day, in which she makes healthy, wholesome food simple and quick to make amidst the chaos of every day life. In this, it undoubtedly succeeds. The breakfast section is jam-packed with recipes that you can whip up before you run out of the door, such a s her 5-ingredient Mango Smoothie and Banana Breakfast Bars and she’s got every dreamy porridge flavour you could imagine covered – cinnamon and date, raisin and apple, the list goes on! You can make a big batch of her Sun Dried Tomato courgette to take as a low-carb packed lunch all week, while Spiced Sweet Potato Stew and Summer Strawberry Crumble would make for a delicious and distinctive house meal. And the best part of all of this? Her natural ingredients make every single recipe nourishing and nutritious, so you can feast on each guilt-free. Any book that

Izzie Fernandes

If you were to tell my seven year old self that my next meal was an omelette, there is no doubt that you would have aroused a great sense of disappointment in me. Whether ham, cheese, tomato or mushroom was on offer, all I could do was miserably apprehend the hunger pains which would come later. After all, there was clearly some mistake, this meagre eggy ‘snack’ was not really meant as a meal, right? Well, thirteen years down the line, things have changed. There are a number of reasons for this, the main one being that now I’m a student, I have come to realise that omelettes are probably the food which cater best for this slightly slovenly, low budget and eating on the go type of lifestyle.

Therese Banks visits Beacon House Conveniently located on the corner of Queens Road and Elton Road, Beacon House offers students a café on the ground floor and as well as study space accessible by student ID. Its Source café area is brightly lit, open and inviting, with big windows looking out onto Queens Road and seating options for both groups and individuals. The atmosphere was fairly quiet around 3:00pm when my friend Katarina and I dropped in, with students either quietly working on group projects, having a quick chat with friends, or working on coursework while enjoying something from the café. The Beacon House café offers a variety of food options within the typical price range of the other Source cafés on campus, including smoothies, sandwiches, soups, and hot and cold beverages. Compared to the Source café in the Arts and Social Sciences Library, Beacon House does have a wider selection of hot beverages and baked goods. They were also displaying a few loose-leaf tea options. Katarina and I decided tried the Melon Refresher and Pash N’ Shoot smoothies, a Triple Chocolate muffin and a Dirty Chai. All of their smoothies are advertised as providing 2.5 of your 5-a-day for £3.10 and you can add matcha to any of them for 50p, if you think you need an extra boost The Melon Refresher is their ‘hydrating’ smoothie, with melon, mango, and strawberry. Since it is supposed to be hydrating, it doesn’t have a thick, smoothie consistency and it’s is closer to a juice, but still really nice. The Pash N’ Shoot smoothie might help if you’re feeling a bit low; made with passion fruit, mango and pineapple, its supposed to be a good source of vitamin C. The Dirty Chai is a shot of espresso added to a Chai Latte. With an even balance of the flavours of espresso and chai, their Dirty Chai wasn’t too overpowering and would be a good option if you’re in need of an extra bit of caffeine but don’t want to go for a regular coffee or tea. We finished off with the Triple Chocolate muffin: a chocolate muffin with chocolate chips and a white chocolate filling down the centre. Sweet and rich without tasting like pure sugar, the perfect end to our first trip to Beacon House.



Review: Hart’s Bakery Hugo Lebus reviews a Bristol favourite, located right by Temple Meads intriguing looking raisin and fennel bread. Hart’s Bakery is part of the gentrification of food that has taken place through the UK after the last few years. Among a great many other ‘basics’, bread is gradually being gentrified as people demand proper, home made bread from a baker they trust; a movement that has driven sales of sliced white bread down considerably in the last few years, whilst sales of ‘artisan’ bread and numbers ‘artisan’ bakeries has seen a huge spike. Hart’s Bakery represents perfectly represents this search for a better quality of bread and they deliver this whilst providing a friendly, warm service and delightful experience for the customer.

Hugo Lebus

Hugo Lebus

On every ‘Visit Bristol’ website that I have read in search of things to eat, there has not been one that has denied the importance of starting a visit to Bristol with a trip to Hart’s Bakery, in their own words ‘an artisan bakery working out of a large Victorian railway arch at Temple Meads Station’. And so, picking up my Exeter friend from the station, I decided that it was time to pay them a visit and to taste some of the pastries and breads that they have pictured on their website. I went to the counter next to the open kitchen, into which the customer can see the bakers plying their trade so skilfully and admire the speed at which they do their work, to decide on what I should order. Unfortunately I had arrived just after the lunch service, so instead I decided that I should try a couple of the plethora of cakes and pastries laid out in front of me. Having chosen a ‘Rhubarb and ginger crumble slice’ and some of the ‘Orange and spiced almond cake’, I sat down on the homely wooden tables, decorated with a bunch of quintessentially English flowers in a jam jar, which only added to the already warm and friendly ambiance within the bakery. I began with the orange and spiced almond cake, which was topped with strings of candied orange peel, giving it a simple but clearly expertly made look. Its simple looks matched its simple but delicious flavours, subtle hints of orange and spice were not overwhelmed by the syrupy consistency of the cake, something it is often not true with cakes like these. The rhubarb and ginger crumble was equally pleasing to the taste buds, with a perfectly thick layer of crumble, atop a layer of ginger, atop a layer of rhubarb and sponge (though I could have done with a little more rhubarb); a delicious treat with the flavours perfectly balanced, without too much overpowering ginger. I shall certainly be returning for their lunch and to test their exquisite looking bread, among which there was extremely

Preview: Bristol Food Connections Pippa Cole tells us about one of the biggest events in Bristol’s culinary calendar

Bristol Food Connections runs 29th April – 7th May 2016. To view the full program in all its glory, please visit http://www. bristolfoodconnections.com/programme-2016/.


with Bristol University student Danny Pandolfi (perhaps better known by his alias Craft-D) set to perform alongside a host of other top acts. There is also a ‘Green Poems for a Blue Planet’ poetry event. Many of the events are definitely compatible with a student budget, with a large portion being free and lots available for only a small cost. Whether you’re a tentative food lover or a committed culinary obsessive, there is sure to be an event on the extensive programme to pique your interest. And if you’re just after a temporary alternative to your lunchtime meal deal, feasts big and small are on offer across the week, guaranteed to send you back to lectures with a full belly and a contented smile.




For the third year running Bristol Food Connections takes over our city with a celebration of good food, passionate people and a great cause. More than just a festival, the week comprises of experiences to inspire, educate and entertain. From a Food Jam in St Paul’s to a Bellies not Bins food waste masterclass, the wide range of events engage the public with the challenges of feeding an ever growing community whilst providing a delicious day out. The aspiration of Bristol Food Connections is for a healthy, local food system driven by a public demand for quality, local food which is produced by passionate people with an environmental conscience. With well-known culinary speakers such as Tim Hayward, Diana Henry and Xanthe Clay, and local food ambassadors Elly Curshen, Genevieve Taylor and Josh Eggleton, there’s plenty of inspiration both to get you cooking and to get you thinking about a future in food. Events really do range from the weird to wonderful. Kalpna Woolf will be explaining the health benefits of spices and cooking a sample dish. A ‘street food village’ will set up on college green for the day on 29th April; a perfect lunch spot for an end of week treat! A ‘Tropical Coffee Rave’ is also scheduled, said to be taking place to the backdrop of the sounds of the Caribean.

However, the organisers are hoping to stimulate your brain as well as your tastebuds. There will be a film screening on whether free range farming can help solve the dairy crisis, and Radio 4 will be hosting their ‘Farming Today’ debate between competition finalists on the future of food growth and distribution in the UK. There will also be a cultural element to the week, with the food festival having plenty of poetry offerings. Put on with with Hammer & Tongue, there will be a ‘Bristol Food Poetry Slam’,

Editor Plum Ayloff

28 32

Deputy Editor Beatrice Murray-Nag

Online Editor Phoebe Jordan

Deputy Online Editor Julia Pritchard

payloff@epigram.org.uk bmurraynag@epigram.org.uk pjordan@epigram.org.uk jpritchard@epigram.org.uk @e2style


Champagne Supernovas The urban bohemian, the Champagne Supernova. Sumptuous furs and delicate blouses coupled with grungy lace and velvets bring the Nineties into the 21st century.

Find the full editorial online at epigram.org.uk/category/style Photographer: BC Models: Zara Huband and Hattie Bottom Creative Director: Phoebe Jordan Styling: Phoebe Jordan, Plum Ayloff and Hattie Bottom Hair and Makeup: Phoebe Bray



The rise of the Insta-internships

Alexandra Keates explores how our favourite social media platform can help us break into the world of fashion Looking for placements and internships in the fashion industry can be tough. As many firms require previous experience for internship roles, it can sometimes seem as if it’s impossible to get a foot in the door. However, there’s a new social media trend that may just be your ticket to becoming the next Anna Wintour or Natalie Massenet. The way in? Instagram.

Instagram @avantpremiere

Instagram @condenastjobsuk

Internship Advertisements The best internships available in the industry can be in the smaller businesses, as there is often a greater workload on offer, resulting in more opportunities and experience than you may find in an international firm. Many of these younger firms have taken to Instagram to start advertising for interns. Labels such as Beulah London (@beaulahlondon), French Sole (@ frenchsole), Ethologie London (@ethologie), Charlotte Simone (@charlottesimone_) and a host of others all use the social media platform to advertise for aspiring interns to join their brands. Contacting them via Instagram also shows your awareness of their presence on social media and can thus help in showing your interest in the industry. However, for the latest opportunities at bigger companies, many of them have separate accounts where they advertise the latest positions available so you’ll never miss out on a chance to apply. Conde Nast (owner of Vogue, Glamour, Tatler etc.) have a dedicated Instagram called Conde Nast Careers UK (@condenastjobsuk). Your Instagram

Instagram @theintern247

Instagram @simplystylistxo

You might be able to find them on Instagram, but they can also find you. Many fashion labels and PR Houses use Instagram to find out about your style, background and interests, so don’t hold back on posting any creative posts that show your love for the industry. So if you’re looking to get your foot in the door and source an internship in the fashion industry, don’t be afraid to use Instagram. Follow both big and small brands and have a scout around as there are often some great opportunities available, hidden amongst the healthy brunch and selfie posts, just waiting to be found.

Fast fashion: what is the True Cost?

Scarlett Sherriff comments on the effects of the fast fashion industry, considering the global impact of our modern buying habits Everyone was shocked by the headlines about the Rana Plaza Factory disaster in 2013. Around 1,000 people were crushed to death because the space they worked in was unsafe. Days earlier, workers who had expressed their concern about the cracks in the building had been forced to work. The world saw what had happened, people were appalled, some boycotted PRIMARK and eventually the factory owners were arrested. Yet, ultimately, we carried on doing the same thing and we probably won’t stop any time soon. The statistics are clear, we buy 400 per

cent more clothes than we did two decades ago and it’s this need for more, cheaper and faster clothes that is driving exploitation. Retailers try to make us feel better about ourselves. Recently, H&M launched a ‘World Recycle Week’ with the aim of recycling 1,000 tons of unwanted clothing, but as Lucy Siegle points out in her article for the Guardian, ‘Am I a fool to expect more than corporate greenwashing?’ This was there to deviate our attention. It clashed with ‘Fashion Revolution Week’, which was created to commemorate the ‘Rana Plaza Factory Disaster’ and celebrate

Unsplash.com/ Kris Atomic

Fast fashion is ingrained in us. We like cheap clothes and will always be enticed by a £10 pair of jeans and £3 t-shirt. Each season there are new and on-trend affordable items in PRIMARK, Forever 21 and H&M. Topshop has a never ending range of young, cool clothes without the designer price tag. It’s routine to grab that bargain, because it won’t be there next week. Two weeks later, the trend’s already changed and we do the same. It’s fun but, undeniably, it’s destructive too. I recently watched the documentary film True Cost (available on Netflix). It showed the toxic effects of our consumption; violence, poverty, shockingly poor working conditions and catastrophic environmental damage, leading to an increase in cancer and other illnesses related to the spread of poisonous toxins. One woman explained how she and other members of a group of workers had united and proposed a list of demands to the managers of the Bangladesh factory she worked in. In response, they were locked inside the building and attacked. They were beaten up and hurt with chairs, sticks and scissors, solely for demanding better conditions and an increase on their meagre salary.

ethical fashion. Paying lip service to environmentalism doesn’t benefit anyone, and diverting attention from an event that showed up the damaging effects of consumerism, seeking to inspire change, hinders ethical progress. Changing the mind-set of the whole Western world won’t be easily done. It means changing our love for constant wardrobereplenishment and changing the way global economics works. This seems idealistic, at best quite unrealistic, but we must at least consider the effects of what we wear on the people who make our clothes. I’ve started trying to buy less and, in future, will look more closely at charity shops and events like clothes swaps. Ethical fashion brands are expensive and as a student I can’t afford them, nor can anyone expect general society to. Ultimately, to try to make any difference, we simply need to buy less and not take our clothes for granted. We’re causing damage and we’re being ripped off. Just because the clothes are cheap, it doesn’t mean we’re saving money, as our obsession with regular buying means we’re spending more. Commercial businesses wouldn’t keep reducing the prices otherwise. We live in a neoliberal, profit-driven world, after all.


Editor Camilla Gash

Deputy Editor Ella Ennos-Dann

Online Editor Annabel Lindsay







Epigram Travel Section 2015/16

Holly Rooke compares her travel experiences to those of her dad... but which is better?

‘A beat up old car, a few dollars in the pocket and a sense of adventure.’ That’s all, so the back of any Lonely Planet travel guide will tell you, that founders Tony and Maureen Wheeler needed for ‘the trip of a lifetime’ in 1972. Now, more than 40 years later, Lonely Planet print more than 120 million books in 11 different languages - a milliondollar industry that seems worlds away from the original experiences of the creators. The rise of travel guides such as Lonely Planet and Rough Guides made it easier for independent travellers to explore the globe, opening up new possibilities and destinations at a time when air travel was becoming easier and more accessible for the masses.

The ‘lonely planet’ written about in the ’70s does not seem so lonely anymore. Yet, in 2016, even these well-loved guides - these travellers’ ‘bibles’ - are becoming redundant. With the growth of TripAdvisor, the popularity of travel blogs and photography, and enterprises such as Airbnb, prospective and current travellers are able to access all the information they need from their smartphone or laptop. The days of turning up at a travel agent, armed with only a map and a budget, are gone. Instead, planning a trip involves long hours spent

trawling the internet for the cheapest flights, booking the hotel recommended by your favourite blogger and finding the restaurant with the highest ratings. Here are three important ways I think travel has changed over the years: 1. Keeping in contact When my dad, now 63, left university and set off for five months in the Caribbean and South America, he sent three postcards back to his parents in Nottingham and received one letter, luckily timed to be picked up in a Venezuelan post office. Now, one letter in five months has become one Facebook message every five hours. Painfully slow and expensive internet cafes have been replaced by widespread and usually free Wi-Fi, meaning travellers can be as connected on the road as they are at home.

flickr/Jeffrey Sullivan

The changing face of travel

always someone out there, on the big wide world of the web, who has done the trip you’re doing, or has the answer to your peculiar question about bus times in Northern Peru. 3. The element of surprise You’ve seen hundreds of photos of the much-anticipated monument before you visit it; you’ve viewed the restaurant menu online before you arrive; you know where the best place to stay is and which room to ask for. Positively, it’s now much easier for travellers to get the best deals and the most enjoyable experiences (you know to avoid the hotel with the bed-bugs and that the ‘grand temple’ your tuk-tuk driver told you about is actually just a tiny shrine with his brother sat outside collecting visiting fees). On the other hand, much of the element of surprise has been taken out of travelling. According to many people who travelled during the ’60s and ’70s, just turning up and hoping for the best was half the fun.

2. Travel blogging and photography The accessibility of the internet, as well as changes in the way we plan our trips, has led to a huge increase in travel blogs and photography. Instagram, Tumblr and other social media sites allow travellers to share their favourite photos and experiences as they go. Those looking for information no longer need to rely on guidebooks or travel agents – there’s

Travel, for many, used to be a way to escape, to leave behind the everyday and explore a world that felt untouched and exciting. Now, travellers have to try harder and harder to ‘get away’ - the often heard desire to ‘get off the beaten track’ is testimony to this. With information and connection everywhere, the ‘lonely planet’ written about in the ’70s does not seem so lonely anymore.

Home and away: the best upcoming festivals Dekmantel

With festival season soon approaching, here are a handful that are worth attending, whether you’re looking for a local weekender, or to breakaway to Europe this summer.

4-7th August, Amsterdam. Dekmantel festival takes place at various locations across the amazing city of Amsterdam, split into a day and night programme. In the day, it’s set in the beautiful natural surroundings of Amsterdamse Bos, providing an open view of the landscape, with grassy meadows and plenty of hidden away areas to explore. By night, the festival moves to several landmark locations, including one of Holland’s most wellknown and iconic music venues, a former milking factory discovered in 1970, the Melkweg. This year’s line-up is diverse, with live performances from Tony Allen and his band, James Holden, NYC post-pun outfit, ESG and dub-legends Lee ‘Scratch Perry’ and Adrian Sherwood. Dekmantel’s DJ bill runs deep, focused on the best contemporary, experimental and timeless underground music. Ricardo Villalobos, Dixon, Moodymann, Donato Dozy, Jeff Mills and Motor City Drum Ensemble being just some names.

Love Saves the Day

28-29th May, Bristol. Love Saves the Day combines the excitement of a citycentre event with the escapism and adventure of a secluded festival. It’s a weekend-long celebration that merges the best of Bristol’s thriving underground music with pioneering artists from across the globe. It showcases a variety of different genres and musical styles, all in one space - house, disco, techno, bass, electro, dubstep, hip hop and alternative. Some headliners include Stormzy, David Rodigan, Ben Klock, Maribou State, Skream and Bristol’s own My Nu Leng. Love Saves the Night Afterparties are also available over the weekend at Motion, Lakota and Coroners Court.

Lost Village

Love International

flickr/Dave Thomas

27-29th May, Lincolnshire. An intimate 5,000 person festival experience set amongst secluded woodland deep in the Lincolnshire countryside, Lost Village is a kaleidoscopic dreamscape of sights and secret hideaways inviting festivalgoers to embark on a woodland adventure and explore old cabins, dilapidated buildings and remnants of an unusual past. It’s a rich combination of exciting, dynamic and forward-thinking music, involving artists, DJs and bands. This year’s line-up includes the likes of Fatboy Slim, Huxley, Kink, Bicep, Catz n Dogz and Horse Meat Disco Dan Shake. Expect some exciting installations across the festival including wood-fired hot tubs, Indian head massages and yoga workshops on the Lake of Tranquillity.

June 29-July 6, Croatia. Love International is a brand new festival replacing the acclaimed Garden Festival at the Tisno. Located on the picturesque Adriatic coast halfway between Zadar and Split, with its own private bay, sandy beach and crystal clear waters. The area has a host of restaurants, cafes, apartments and is connected by a bridge to the island of Murter. Love International boasts a variety of stages and parties, including Barbarellas discotheque, an outdoor nightclub offering the unique opportunity to dance under the stars, and the Argonaughty, an old wooden boat. Some announced acts include Eats Everything, Joy Orbison, Jackmaster, Felix Dickinson, Hodge and Prosumer.

Nia Price



flickr/Initiaz Rahim

Stunning coastal road trips Forget Route 66 and the Great Ocean Road, Megan Warren-Lister encourages us to take the road less travelled 2) Hokkaido

1) Hawaii A picture perfect destination, the Hana Highway winds along the North Coast of Maui for 52 miles. Bordering a tropical jungle, the route starts in Kahului, where you’ll need to head east towards Hana. Laced with black beaches, the meandering road is punctuated by waterfalls and graced throughout by exquisite seascapes. Whilst the route is an aesthetic feast in itself, there are a multitude of places to visit along the way, from the Garden of Eden (yes- it really is as paradisiacal as it sounds) and the Botanical Arboretum, to the magnificent Wailua falls, which has a magnificent 173-foot drop!

Laced with black beaches, the meandering road is punctuated by waterfalls and graced throughout by exquisite seascapes. Top tip: Make sure you stop off and explore the wondrous trails of Waianapanapa State Park.

Boasting an array of sublime national parks juxtaposed with hundreds of cosy fishing towns, Hokkaido is guaranteed to provide any Instagram devotee with a worthy picture. Though famed for its rail network, Hokkaido flouts the stereotypical image of a Japanese city rammed with commuters; sparsely populated, the island makes up 20 per cent of Japan’s land, but is home to a mere 5 per cent of the country’s population. Cheaper and home to hot springs and caldera lakes, it is a much more attractive option for road tripping than the main island of Honshu. Your best bet is to start in Hakodate, which by Spring you will be able to arrive at by shinkansen (also known as the bullet train to those of us unable to speak Japanese). Before setting off, be sure to peruse the morning markets, bountiful and bustling with authentic vestiges of rural Japanese life and once you are stuffed full of sushi, make a short ascent to experience quasi space age views from the top of HakodateYama. When you’re ready to head off, to get the full experience of the island, head north to Rausu. The exact route you take is up to you, but be sure to flit through the assortment of national parks. Don’t end your journey in Rausu - make sure you continue along the coast to finish in Kushiro where you can pay a visit to the elusive dancing cranes!

3) The Basque The Basque Road is a magnet for convertibles, but, for the best experience, embrace the surfer aesthetic and hire a camper van (conveniently much more adept at surf board transport). The best place to start is Bilbao - head from there along the Atlantic to San Sebastian. Villages along the way act as gems garlanding beaches proffering perhaps the best surf in the world (shh don’t tell). San Sebastian is a haven for all those into water sports, but those less physically inclined need not fret - you’ll be pleased to know it is also a foodie’s paradise. When, if ever, you are ready to leave San Sebastian, head south directly through the sublimity of the Pyrenees. Once you reach Pamplona, begin the ascent towards the Roncesvalles Pass prior to circling back to your coastal starting point. For those who will inevitably succumb to severely extended wanderlust, alternatively continue along the Bay of Biscay towards Saint-Jean-de-Luz. Days will be well spent lingering on bohemian beaches in Biarritz. Finish the trip by heading North to Bordeaux, as picturesque as picturesque can be: chic cafes litter endless boulevards and vineyards serve as the arteries of the region, fuelling an atmosphere of hedonism.

Thinking outside the Triangle Noa Leach reveals her top Bristol spots away from the student bubble

1. La Ruca is a foreign foods shop downstairs and a Chilean café up. I was (almost embarrassingly) excited to find products like real Argentinian Dulce de Leche, an array of spices and other exotic foodstuffs. The shop also sells imported bathroom products and jewellery so if you’re looking for gifts, La Ruca offers something new. The food, made and served by neo-Bristolian South Americans, deliciously replicates Chilean cuisine (at delicious student prices too) - such as beany, avocado-ey, cheesy empanadas for under a fiver.

2. With origami on the ceiling and D’Angelo on the speakers, it’s hard to go wrong with the Gallimaufry. Also on Gloucester Road, the Gallimaufry is a wine bar, but not too fancy for students (they serve pints too - of beer, that is). With summer coming up its appeal doubles by its having an outdoor terrace. The bar has a vibrant atmosphere as it brings in a dynamic crowd, so it is a good place both to take friends and meet new people.

3. If Gloucester Road is just too far for you, things are looking up: King’s Street is the home of the Old Duke, a traditional pub near the harbourside. If you are tired of The Apple then the Old Duke is just round the corner and also serves local cider (though the Old Bristolian is, sadly, not on offer). JFS lovers may also know that the pub hosts live jazz performances every night, which you may have heard before walking down this pretty little cobbled street.





Editor Ben Duncan-Duggal whatson@epigram.org.uk


NAO @Thekla


Glossy, vocal led synth pop is to 2016 what landfill indie was to 2004. A&R men are consequently, once again, acting like travellers on a sinking ship whose lifejackets are in the form of glum twenty somethings with keyboards who cannot smile. It’ll be over soon, but in the meanwhile enjoy the craze by experiencing some of the best of it in the most intimate of settings. NAO combines eclectic beats with strong and pointed melodies and as a result she’ll be onto bigger things very soon indeed. Tickets available for £10 online

UKF @ Motion

Flickr: slackernrrd

25. 30.


Perhaps one day we will look back and find it bizarre that several people successfully built nightlife brands off the back of posting other people’s music on Youtube, with Eton Messy, Majestic Casual and others dominating the clubs and even charts with nights and compilations. That day has not come yet, though, with UKF having survived the 2013-14 dubstep purge which ridded us of most of the artists it relied upon to bring us an incredibly solid line up. Sub Focus and Plastician are strictly speaking dubstep, but they are both of the most palatable kind. Motion, tickets available online for £16.50 plus booking fee

WHAT’S ON - 300TH ISSUE TIME TRAVELLER EDITION... The Bristol Bus Boycott - 30th April 1963

Flickr: Paul Townsend

On 30th April 1963 The Bristol bus boycott began. It began as a protest against the bus company’s refusal to hire black or Asian employees, but by the time it ended successfully four months later it had drawn attention to discrimination against BME people in areas such as wider employment and housing. Some consequently consider it influential in the passing of the Race Relations Acts of 1965 and 1968, which outlawed racial discrimination in public and then in housing and employment.

Eats Everything at Lakota – any given Friday or Saturday night in the late 90s.

Joss Smithson

Eats Everything has now moved onto far bigger and better things – as shown by the fact that he didn’t return to the sweaty nightclub for 16 years after his residency finished – and that means that it would have been valuable to catch him in this intimate, most Bristol of atmospheres whilst you could.

The White Stripes - The Lousiana - 28th July 2001

Fabio Venni

The walls of The Riverside are plastered with the posters from famous historic gigs at the venue, but this has to be one of the greatest. The gig in the 120 capacity venue would have taken place at a point where it was a whole year before the band would achieve breakthrough success with their third album, but the band nonetheless would have had a wealth of material to play. One to tell the grandkids about.



summer events FROM BRISTOL SU

find out more at bristolsu.org.uk/summer-programme MIND YOUR HEAD


tell us who inspires you bristolsu.org.uk


the people who will represent you

Humans of Bristol SU The SU Awards are coming up, so to get you thinking about who you might nominate we went out on campus and asked you to tell us about people who inspire you. You can nominate students, societies, sports clubs, and staff from the University & SU for an award any time before 1 May here: bristolsu.org.uk/awards.

'Claire Hargreaves is an inspiration to all first years. She writes for Her Campus, Epigram, The Tab. She’s on the Manor Hall JCR and organises incredible events. She’s an incredible person - always there for everyone, whatever you need. Plus she’s funny!'

'My mum is my biggest inspiration.When my sister and I were born her job clashed with school holidays and the school day. She wanted to be able to spend time with us and raise us herself, so she gave up her job and became a teacher, which was completely new to her. 15 years later, she is the Vice President of her school and she is a chair of the teachers union. She also took on two extra University degrees. If my mum can switch to a sector she didn’t originally have an interest in and rise to the top, just for her children, then that drives me to reach for the top in everything I want to do.

'When I think of someone who inspires me I go back to my sailing skipper skipper. He would definitely bollock you if you mess up, but he’d always take you for a beer afterwards to explain where you went wrong. He was just an all round great guy and I think that attitude of forgiving in teaching is really important.'

'Honestly I can’t pick one person, but the whole rugby team are an inspiration to me. I started rugby in first term, and despite the fact that Bristol is obviously a good uni, it was rugby really that made staying at Bristol worth it for me. All of the first years say that the inclusivity of the club and the fact that they welcome everyone is the reason they love Bristol.'

'I’ve been working with Jess Taylor on the Labour society’s campaign to get students to vote, and Jess has been SO instrumental to the campaign. Students are currently dropping off the electoral register in huge numbers, but they can make such a huge difference to elections in Bristol so it’s really important that we all register!'

'Alicia Coupland is one of the most inspiring people I have ever had the chance to work with. I started working at Bristol SU part-time as a first year and Alicia was the friendliest, funniest and most authentic person I could have hoped for to show me the ropes. I have never met anyone so sincere and so passionate about they do. She has so much love for the students she works with and is so committed to helping people out with their campaigns. She’s moving to London soon, and she’ll be sorely missed!

presenting: your incoming elected officers

Mind Your Head It’s time to talk mental health

As part of Bristol SU's Mind Your Head Month ( 18 April - 13 May) Student Living Officer Sarah Redrup tells us a little bit about her own experiences with mental health issues.

Hannah Dualeh Equality, Liberation & Access Officer

Jamie Cross Union Affairs Officer

John House Sport & Student Development Officer


May last year brought about one of the worst episodes of depression that I had ever had, and since then it hasn’t really gone away. I had spent a whole fortnight hurriedly bashing out a string of essays while struggling to keep my head above all of the seminar work I had to catch up on. It wasn’t until I emotionally exploded after I realised that my final essay was 1000 words under the word count after the deadline had passed that I realised something was really wrong with me. I convinced myself that things like showering, making hot meals, brushing my hair or even sleeping were a non-essential waste of my time. I would shut myself away in my room or go out for midnight to early morning sessions at the ASSL. This probably sounds familiar to a lot of students. The fear of time slipping out of your fingers that comes around every time a deadline looms. The anxiety around being able to actually complete something; wondering the whole time if you’re actually good enough to be at a Russell Group University or whether they let you in by mistake. The voice in your head telling you that if you’re not working you’re not doing enough, that other people are working harder than you, that you’re not making the most of it. I look back on my three years at Bristol and I now realise that I didn’t prioritize what was really the most important thing. Myself. I stopped taking time to do my hobbies, I stopped looking after my body and my mind and I didn’t take time to think about what was happening to me because I was too busy worrying about performing. Today I got back on my bike for the first time in several months. I can’t tell you how empowering it felt to pedal through the feelling of my body being as heavy as lead, ignoring the voice in my head telling me that I was too tired, too down, too depressed, too anxious to do it. As difficult as it seems at the time, don’t let the worry about performing stop you from forgetting your hobbies. You are not your grades. To struggle at University doesn’t make you weak and it certainly doesn’t mean that you’re not good enough, it means that you’re just like everyone else and that’s okay! You’re allowed to struggle and you’re allowed to find it hard, because it is! So cut yourself some slack and take time to do something nice just for you. You deserve it.

Zoe Backhouse Undergraduate Education Officer

Stephen Le Fanu Student Living Officer


BRISTOL SU SURVEY Laura Ho Postgraduate Education Officer

tinyurl.com/tellhelen #TellHelen




Editor: Mattie Brignal

Deputy Editor: Ed Grimble

Online Editor: Amy Stewart





Bristol’s tribute to the Bard of Avon

To mark the 400th anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare, Epigram explores why three of the Bard’s plays are as relevant and poignant today as they’ve ever been. King Lear, Adam Becket

The Tempest, Megan Warren-Lister Although contemporary societies are ostensibly removed periodically, culturally and geographically from the content of Shakespeare’s plays, what lends them their immortalised significance is the way in which they orbit around the central issue of the human condition. The various plots pirouette to reach unique ends, but each is an inquiry into what it means to be human; a perpetually relevant examination of human existence that is applicable across centuries and countries. Shakespeare’s cheap-junk ethereal island in The Tempest facilitates this sort of inquiry by acting as the ultimate simulacrum for power relations, a source of eternal human contestation.

of the civilised arts, this encounter with an unchangeable other in his life causes him to struggle. The flaws within Prospero’s character are not overcome until the final scene when he declares, ‘this thing of darkness I acknowledge mine.’ It is in this acceptance of such an intractably dark element of the self that the true value of The Tempest may be found. Recognition of one’s bestial self is far greater an achievement than aspiring to total control of ‘the material world’ and the mutual truce Prospero makes with Caliban is merely a metaphor for Prospero’s resignation from petulant persistent human battles for power. By both accepting the inevitable presence of bestial desires, and rejecting them, Prospero accepts himself, and is in turn able to forgive his enemies in deciding that ‘the rarer action is virtue than vengeance.’ At the close of the play, in relinquishing his art altogether and simultaneously accepting his mortality,

Flickr/ David Welch

Every time we used to listen, watch or recite the end of King Lear at college, my English teacher would cry. He could never cope with the depths to which the tragedy plunged, and neither can I. Not that I always cry, but there is barely a more upsetting sight than that of Lear emerging on stage with the corpse of his beloved Cordelia: ‘howl, howl, howl, howl!’ King Lear is a play about the awful truths of human nature, but also one of hope. Well, until that hope is brutally extinguished in Act V. It is still just as relevant today, 410 years on from its first performance; barely has a play or a playwright written about aspiration, tragedy, and grief in quite such a way. It is such a sad play that for much of its existence, from the late 17th to mid-19th centuries, a version rewritten by Nahum Tate, The History of King Lear, was performed - complete with happy ending. It was shit. Lear is not a play that needs a happy ending; its whole point is the crushing of hope and love through nature and the uncompromising awfulness of humanity. Am I selling it to you? It has a sub-plot that is just as good as its predominant plot, remarkably. Lear’s fall from grace is mirrored by Edgar’s, and the villain Edmund’s rise represents a new meritocratic world. Edmund also happens to be the sexiest character in Shakespeare. His soliloquy at the beginning of the play calls into question the whole nature of society, both then and now: ‘now Gods, stand up for bastards!’, he cries. The ruthlessness of nature is displayed, as both Lear and Edgar are left to the elements on the heath; Lear’s raging at the heavens is a sign of his authority slipping, but also of the unforgiving world in which we live. This also strikes a contemporary chord, as our world is threatened by climate change and natural disasters: ‘and thou all shaking thunder, strike flat the thick rotundity o’ the world’, Lear wails into the storm. There are questions about our existence on this planet, as love does not triumph; good does not necessarily win over evil. Gloucester exemplifies this, the noble character who has his eyes plucked out by some of the most evil characters in Shakespeare (Regan and Cornwall), despite doing no wrong. His cry ‘like flies to wanton boys are we to the Gods; they kill us for their sport,’ has endured as an epithet interrogating life. King Lear makes you wonder what the point of it all really is, whether humanity is as good as it is made out to be and whether believing in a higher power or authority will get you anywhere. If you haven’t seen it, go and watch it this year. You won’t regret it. ‘I

have a journey, shortly to go: My master calls me, I must not say no.’

The Tempest’s protagonist Prospero engages on an appropriately tempestuous journey which sees him transformed from vengeful old man, proudly wielding his control of magic over others on the island, to humbled gentleman who is paradoxically wise to the affliction of an incurable lust for power. Barry Beck notes that The Tempest ‘can be seen as an allegory examining the growth of the human spirit.’ Most crucial to this allegory is an understanding of the relationship between Prospero and Caliban, a native ‘fish like’ creature enslaved by Prospero. It is more appropriate to see Caliban not as a character with autonomy, but instead as the embodiment of Prospero’s unconscious. Prospero refers to Caliban with such gross irreverence that the difficulty he initially has in accepting the existence of a perpetually bestial element in himself is illuminated. Having tried to bring every other aspect of his life into control through classical study

Prospero decides, ‘our revels now, are ended.’ By leaving his magic behind he is also leaving Caliban, he no longer needs imaginary representations because the archetype of the Freudian id within the ego, (represented by Caliban) has been integrated into himself. Ultimately, Shakespeare reminds us that acquisition of real power comes paradoxically when one departs from the unending quest of it, and in realising that all power that is significant can be found within oneself. The brilliance of The Tempest lies in it’s exploration of the rainbow palette of human emotion: featuring betrayals, proposals, jealousy, and magnanimity, Shakespeare weaves a tapestry of human experience into his shortest play with such skill that the watercolour of sentiment becomes tangible to everyone, anywhere.

Romeo and Juliet, Matilda Haymes Although a multitude of great writing has followed Shakespeare, his work remains as popular and relevant as it was 400 years ago. He is a monument of what the very essence of great literature should be and is still the pinnacle of the Western literary canon. Romeo and Juliet has become one of Shakespeare’s most famous plays and perhaps the most iconic love story in literature. It has defined the tragic love tale and in contemporary culture the couple still prevail as the idealistic example of true, boundless love. Love is a fixation in modern society, so the story of Romeo and Juliet symbolises many values that are still important today. Its long term cultural significance has made the play synonymous with a fated love; Juliet’s balcony in Verona is a very popular tourist attraction where many unmarried people touch Juliet’s statue as a good luck ritual in the hope of finding the love of their lives. The play remains such a popular example of romance, despite its tragic ending, because it is an inspiring romantic story where a couple’s love prevails despite their conflicting backgrounds. Modern adaptations such as West Side Story clearly exemplify that Romeo and Juliet’s situation is not exclusive to the 16th century. The various social expectations mean that this is still a believable and moving story when it is translated into the modern era. Shakespeare ensured the cultural legacy of his work by creating timeless themes and characters. Throughout Romeo and Juliet there is a clear theme of social difference that is still apparent in a contemporary society. Although rivalries similar to the Capulets and the Montagues certainly still exist today, this is not the most relatable difference in the play. The generation gap between Romeo and Juliet and the adults in the play is still a common occurrence today. Juliet’s parents disregard her desires and want to force her into an arranged marriage. The conflict that arises between Juliet’s wishes and her parents’ expectations is a common experience for a teenager in the modern age; younger readers can associate with Juliet’s struggle of being denied to act upon her own wishes. Romeo and Juliet is still so relevant today because we can identify with it so strongly. Shakespeare’s writing has maintained such popularity for the past 400 years because he predominantly wrote about the fundamental characteristics of humanity; his stories will never lose their cultural relevance because they explore ideas that are so deeply rooted in our collected human experience - and that is timeless.


Cao Fei Multimedia artist 1978 - present

Flickr: Ina Centaur

Cao Fei was born in Guangzhou, China in 1978. She received the Best Young Artist Award by Chinese Contemporary Art Award in 2006. Recognised as one of the most important in a generation of new artists from Mainland China, Cao Fei uses photography and video installations to create pieces that juxtapose virtual reality with elements of urban modern society. Her work compares a virtual utopia to a hyper-capitalistic reality in order to reveal the disillusionment of the younger generation in China.

Fei is captivated by ‘Second Life’, an online virtual world and it is very influential to her art. She is present in several of her works through her ‘Second Life’ avatar as both participant and observer. One of her most famous works, ‘Whose Utopia?’ (2006), examines the impact of economic growth on the individual. She interviewed factory employees extensively before creating a video project that looked at their dreams for life compared to their current situation.




child’s play Rosanes





Helena Raymond-Hayling talks to doodle artist Kerby Rosanes about his life and the creative processes behind his hugely successful body of work. Kerby Rosanes is a 24 year old illustrator from the Phillipines. He draws incredibly intricate and detailed pen doodles and has become something of an Instagram sensation. Foyles in Cabot Circus hosted him for a guided doodling session where he showed the participants how to build up a doodle of characters and patterns, sharing his unique style. I got a chance to have a chat with him after the event, to learn more about his life and his art... HRH: I understand you don’t have any formal training, which is immensely impressive. What do you do to improve your artwork, and progress your style? KR: I draw every day, if I’m at home I try to draw something very personal for me for 30 minutes in the morning. After that I do emails and the projects I have to do and stuff. That is the secret to improve, I think. Do a personal project or a personal drawing every single day if you have time.

HRH: What advice would you give to those who struggle with artistic block or find themselves lacking inspiration? What’s your secret to productivity? KR: I am productive but I experience that all the time. One thing is just to let go, and don’t carry on for a bit. If you feel you are not creative one particular day, or at a certain time of day go and do something that is unrelated to your work. Go out and travel, or whatever it is that you enjoy to refuel that creativity and then go back to your desk. You don’t have to force yourself, I think that’s the key. HRH: Where do you work? Do you draw on the go, or do you have a studio, and what do you do to make the space yours and facilitate your creativity? KR: Most of the time I just draw on the go, but for some more serious stuff like work for books or work for other people I do it in a very small space at home. I don’t really see why I’d need a huge studio, I want my materials to be within my reach. That little space I have filled with action figures, toys and comic books for inspiration. HRH: Do you have any words for people who want to draw but insist they can’t? KR: If you can’t draw but you really like drawing, I think that motivation will actually teach you how to draw. You will find time,


of course and you can go find a book to help you. The skill can be gained with time and effort, it’s not off limits to anyone. And if you really can’t draw, there’s another creative skill out there for you. HRH: To what do you attribute your success to date? KR: I would say its social media. When I was working in a company three years ago, I got bored doing meetings and emails all the time and I found it really stressful. I found art helped to de-stress me, I’ve been drawing since I was a kid and I always wanted a career in art. I found myself doodling during meetings and during the night so I just shared it online and it has been amazing and I’ve got such amazing feedback. I get commissions, projects because of social media. It’s a great thing but it’s very tricky and can be risky, so if you can’t handle it, don’t do it. You don’t have to be on the internet to succeed, there are other tools, channels and platforms to use. Social media is a fast lane but as I said, it can be difficult.

KR: I think I’m going to spend more time doing books, and not just colouring books but books of my personal work too. I will be releasing a third colouring book soon and an art book which collects all of my personal drawings which is really exciting. I will be working with some shoe brands for personalised shoes, and other advertising projects. Normally I don’t plan things too much, I like it when things just show up, it’s more exciting that way. HRH: If you could cover one object, building or landmark in your drawings and doodles, what would it be? KR: The statue of liberty, I think. It symbolises a lot to me. I would love to cover it in doodles and do something that has never been done. Kerby has published two colouring books, Animorphia and his latest, Imagimorphia which are available online and in Foyles. You can follow him on Twitter @Kerby_Rosanes or Instagram @ kerbyrosanes.

HRH: Have you got any big plans or new projects in the pipeline?

Helena Raymond-Hayling


WHEN She graduated from the Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts in 2001. It was here she created her first film ‘Imbalance 257’ (1999) that examined her generation’s interest in subverting the social normalities. Since receiving her B.F.A. Fei has been regularly producing artwork that has gained international success.

Flickr: Ina Centaur

Cao Fei currently lives and works in Beijing. Her artwork has been displayed at a vast number of solo exhibitions both nationally and internationally, including the Serpentine Galleries and the Tate Modern in London. Fei focuses on China in her artwork, using ‘Second Life’ to construct a fictional Chinese city.

Ana McLaughlin

HRH: What moves you, do you have any people, places, belongings or aspirations in particular in your life that inspire you? KR: I have a lot of those! My family inspire me a lot, because we are a family of artists. I have cousins that are musicians, painters. My brother does calligraphy and my mum loves to draw as well, so quite a lot of artsy stuff. They kind of inspired me to actually pursue art, but none of us actually pursued art as a career so that pushed me to do it. In terms of subjects and themes in drawing, I am very influenced by cartoons and anime. My favourite artists are probably Japanese artists, Hayao Miyazaki for one. His films are so amazing I kept watching them again and again for inspiration. What inspires me is what I grew up with, anime cartoons. My hometown has many rivers and lakes, which is why a lot of my work is close to nature as well.

Cao Fei will be featured at the upcoming exhibition ‘Art From Elsewhere’ that is taking place at the Bristol Museum and Art Gallery and the Arnolfini. You should go and see her work because it is a powerful commentary on the life for the younger generations in China, showing the discrepancies between their dreams and their realities. Fei’s work is an enigmatic deconstruction of the expectations of modern society that reveals what it is like to be disillusioned with the world.

Matilda Haymes

Epigram 25.04.2016

Film & TV

@epigramfilm Editor: Ella Kemp

Deputy Editor: Kate Wyver

Online Editor: Georgia O’Brien







“It’s Goodnight From Him” - Ronnie Corbett: 1930 - 2016

Film & TV Writer Jordan Baker looks back at the life and career of the well-loved, warmly-admired actor who recently passed away. British comedy. The sketch is a family favourite of mine and it’s pretty incredible to see how its relevance and humour has endured. Ronnie Corbett began to thrive when he launched a lifelong collaboration with Ronnie Barker. Undoubtedly, the pair’s golden era was during the broadcasting of The Two Ronnies, which ran for an impressive 16 years, turning the Ronnies into household names.

“Every day and in every way I’m getting taller and taller.” Eat your heart out Roald Dahl.

Their most memorable sketch has to be ‘Four Candles’, a routine that’s become as ingrained into the collective British consciousness as that of Del Boy falling through the bar – and that takes a lot of ingraining. Corbett plays a shopkeeper who grows ever more frustrated when he keeps mishearing the customer, Barker – “No, fork handles. Handles for forks.” It’s a sidesplittingly superlative performance; Corbett’s delivery is spot on and his use of movement has all the dexterity of a stumpy, cockney ballerina. The Ronnies sketch that I admire most is ‘Mastermind’, where Corbett’s chosen subject is ‘Answering the Question Before Last.’ He makes some really incisive responses such as ‘What’s the difference between a donkey and an ass?’ ‘One’s a trade union leader, the other’s a member of the cabinet.’ Both Ronnies feared

BFI/LFFPRESS Flickr: Andrew Hall

Ronnie Corbett was a loving father, a caring husband, a benevolent beekeeper, a comedy titan and a short arse. What made him such a revered comedian? Not least the absence of a Napoleon complex. After his passing, let’s look back at the life and work of the audaciously short, utterly bespectacled Ronnie C. It would be untrue to say that Corbett was always comfortable with his height. In his autobiography, High Hopes, the Scotsman writes that, at 14, his aunt placed him on a course named ‘How to Become Taller’. It was a task that could be accomplished through constant positive thinking, as well as rigorous stretching exercises that would make Stretch Armstrong blush – all for the meagre fee of two guineas. Corbett had to recite this mantra to himself every morning: ‘Every day and in every way I’m getting taller and taller.’ Eat your heart out Roald Dahl. As agonizingly poignant as this tale of a deluded aunt and her vertically challenged nephew might be, the physical and spiritual exercises failed to have an impact on the young comic. Corbett has stated that his diminutive height was the ‘cornerstone’ of his success. He wasn’t wrong – take the Class Sketch from The Frost Show, where Corbett appears alongside John Cleese and Ronnie Barker, in which their comparative heights are used to lampoon the British class system. “I look up to him because he is upper-class, but I look down on him because he is lower class,” the petit-bourgeois Barker says. Corbett, embodying the working class, plaintively responds, “I know my place.” His knack for comic timing and ability to exploit his small stature gave Corbett a unique voice in

that the sketch wouldn’t be well received by the audience. However, it was sensational and it demonstrated Corbett’s ingenuity and his aptitude for entertaining. In later years, Corbett appeared in comedies such as Extras, Monkey Trousers and Love Soup, as well as panel shows like Would I Lie to You? and Have I Got News for You. But last year, the comedian was diagnosed with motor-neurone disease and took time out from entertainment. He passed away on Thursday, 31st March,

surrounded by his loved ones. Ronnie Corbett is sewn into the cultural fabric of Britain and on that colossal curtain of cloth that hovers eerily above Albion is his face smiling alongside Barker’s. Although he was short in height and severely myopic, this didn’t prevent him from making a vast contribution to the world of comedy. Families at home and fans across the world will have a hole in their hearts and a smile that’s a little bit faded. A salute from us all, it’s goodnight from him.

The Jungle Book Film & TV Writer Jacob Povey reviews the adaptation of the much loved classic, as Jon Favreau takes on The Jungle Book.


In recent years, Walt Disney have developed a habit of giving some of the company’s most popular animated classics their own live-action developments. Last year we saw Cinderella, next year we’ll havwe Beauty and the Beast and Dumbo, Mulan and Pinocchio are in development. Now though we have The Jungle Book, part remake of the 1967 animation and part re-adaptation of Rudyard Kipling’s stories. The plot is very familiar: the young ‘man cub’ Mowgli was raised by a wolf pack after being found in the jungle by Bagheera the panther, and the time has come for him to live with other humans. He befriends the loveable bear Baloo, has an encounter with King Louie the orangutan (here a Gigantopithecus) and faces danger in the form of the tiger Shere Khan. The plot follows the same major beats we know from the animation, with new elements

introduced by writer Justin Marks, such as the ‘water truce’, coming from the Kipling stories. The 1967 film is so loved by all, not least by me, that this new adaptation was met with both excited and nervous anticipation. Thank goodness then that in The Jungle Book we have a greatly enjoyable movie. Most importantly the story is a genuinely exciting adventure, solidly paced with an effective balance of tones. It takes a little while to properly get going, but it quickly moves along like a joy. There are thrilling set pieces and moments of wit, fright and tenderness. I don’t know if the inclusion of two iconic songs was actually necessary, but I’m sure people would feel short-changed if they weren’t included. ‘The Bare Necessities’ seemed to fit into its part of the film better than ‘I Wan’na Be Like You’ though. Neel Sethi as Mowgli is the only truly live action element of the film and he is quite charming.

He believably fits into everything else on screen, all of which is computer created. This must have been a great challenge for the young actor, but he clearly has a strong imagination. The CGI in this film is spectacular and convincing. What an immense task to create the Indian jungle and its animal inhabitants from nothing and how impressive that it has been achieved with such panache. We haven’t seen world building of this extent since Avatar and I haven’t been more immersed in a 3D film since Gravity. The 3D is rarely overt but creates a real depth to the backgrounds and a presence to the foregrounds. This film is a pleasure to look at, from its lush and verdant jungle, to its gorgeous light and its remarkable animals. There are very special creations, especially the big cats Bagheera and Shere Khan, with such precise skeletons, muscles, skin and hair. These animals aren’t anthropomorphised apart from

talking very credibly, rather they are physically characterful in a way true to each of their species. Bill Murray as Baloo is as perfect in the role as we knew he would be and Ben Kingsley is a fine fit for Bagheera. Lupita Nyong’o compassionately voices the mother wolf Raksha and Christopher Walken is a crazy King Louie. Whilst Idris Elba was good at the menacing Shere Khan moments, he could have been more beguiling at other times. Director Jon Favreau (Elf, Iron Man) has made a movie that justifies its existence and then some, despite the minor niggles I have. There is so much fun to be had with The Jungle Book and there’s even room for some subtle messages of what harm humans can do to the natural world, but also how we can fit harmoniously into it. There’s certainly potential for a sequel - and unsurprisingly, one is already in the works.

Epigram 25.04.2016


Beyond the banlieues and straight to the top: Dheepan review Film & TV Writer Matty Edwards discusses Audiard’s Dheepan, telling the tale of culture shock, family life and Sri Lankan culture in France.

d’Or at last year’s Cannes Film Festival with this effort. It really is wonderfully compelling yet sensitive cinema; the music by Nicolas Jaar is tremendously immersive and the film as a whole is a highly sensory experience. Audiard intersperses the gritty reality of immigrant life in France with beautiful dreamy sequences, using shifts in focus and atmospheric sounds. Dheepan is played by Jesuthasan Antonythasan, who himself was part of the Tamil liberation army and came to France as a refugee, giving the film an element of autobiographical authenticity. Audiard wanted to work with different faces and different personalities and with Dheepan he has managed to explore an alternative perspective rarely adopted in Western cinema. For two actors featuring in their first film, Anthonythasan and Kalieaswari Srinivasan as Yalini, their performances are excellent. As the film adopts the perspective of foreigners trying to settle into a new country, France itself


With the European refugee crisis dominating headlines over the last few years, three-time BAFTA winning director Jacques Audiard has adopted the perspective of Sri Lankan refugees settling in France for his masterpiece Dheepan. Dheepan, whose family has been massacred when fighting for the Tamil Tigers in the civil war, is smuggled into Europe with a fake identity along with his pretend wife Yalini and a child they adopt from a nearby village, Illayaal. The constructed family eventually settle in a French banlieue where Dheepan works as a caretaker. This is a totally different kind of fight for the former warrior, but a fight nonetheless. The film brilliantly depicts the family’s struggle to integrate into this scary new world, bond as a new unit and move on from their haunting past. Audiard, who has received critical acclaim for brilliantly gritty A Prophet (2009) and Rust and Bone (2012), won the prestigious Palme

becomes foreign and the locals are the foreigners. The portrayal of France is interesting but above all ambivalent, as the society as a whole is generally warm and accommodating, but this local banlieue community is unwelcoming and intimidating.

Fitting in is the aim of the game for the makeshift family in order to protect their false identities

The high-rise blocks of flats, abundance of young men hanging around on the street, and general lack of hope make up the same kind of setting depicted in Mathieu Kassovitz’s La Haine (1995). This world is intimidating and bewildering for the new arrivals, as pit-bulls bark

What did you think of Dheepan? Join the discussion @EpigramFilm

Films to Faces

Editors’ Picks

Donald Trump

Georgia Online Editor

X-Men: Apocalypse

Hard Tide

Little Miss Sunshine

In cinemas May 18th

In cinemas April 29th

On Netflix

Having watched the franchise in one go ahead of the release of Days of Future Past, I’ve pretty much been counting down the days until Apocalypse. The already great cast and exciting story just gets better.

A drug dealer goes on the run with a nine year old girl after a fatal accident. Violent, action-packed and based on a true story, Hard Tide explores the growth of an unlikely new friendship in the most difficult of circumstances.

Not exactly a new one, but this film is a classic that should be watched by everyone. An unconventional family hits the road to take Olive to her dream beauty pageant in California. It’s one that you won’t be able to forget.

Making A Murderer

Behind Closed Doors

Raised by Wolves

On Netflix

BBC iPlayer


Throughout the year I’ve struggled to keep up with Netflix series, mainly down to time. I managed to binge watch the entire season of this over the Easter break and haven’t looked back since. A story that seems too ‘good’ to be true and some pretty great lawyers, it’s a gripping and fascinating watch.

With unprecedented access to the Thames Valley Police domestic abuse teams, this sees three women who have been abused by their partners give up their right to anonymity. It’s a horrifically truthful look at these women’s lives and how they have been emotionally, physically and sexually abused.

With two seasons already, this hilarious comedy is available to watch on 4oD. I’m perhaps late to the party in watching this series, but boy was it worth it. It captures perfectly the madness and confusion of female pubescence and I couldn’t help but love every single character. I can’t recommend this enough.




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Kate Deputy Editor

Ella Editor

aggressively, residents stare, and drug gangs run the community. In contrast to the grey, grim and gritty French suburbs, England, an alternative destination, is presented as a peaceful and green safe haven, perhaps mimicking the view of some refugees at the ‘Jungle’ at Calais. Fitting in is the aim of the game for the makeshift family in order to protect their false identities, whether it be eating with a spoon or kissing each other goodbye. A particularly poignant moment is when Dheepan suggests that Yalini wears a veil despite the fact that she isn’t Muslim, because other French women do. As Sri Lankan Hindus they don’t even fit into the traditional French image of the foreigner - a Muslim from North Africa or a West African. A clever comment by Audiard on French society. Language plays a central role in the film as the language barrier initially prevents them from integrating and interacting properly with people. Most of the responsibility for learning French is put onto the young shoulders on nine year-old Illayaal, who is shunned by French kids at school. Throughout the film lies the fact that they aren’t a real family and the question of whether they are just pretending or end up actually becoming one. Initially, they appear to lack the strong familial bonds required to keep them together during tough times, but eventually grow closer as things spiral into chaos. Always heartfelt, often moving and occasionally brutal, Dheepan appears to be a genuine, honest portrayal of a very topical issue. Audiard has proved himself as a talented and versatile director who explores sensitive cultural and political themes but also creates powerful cinema in a masterfully stylish manner.

1. Wolf of Wall Street It’s about time that film addressed these issues and I think that we could all learn a lot from Jordan Belfort. I can’t really relate to this idea of working my way up to the top, but good on him. I’m not sure who Scorsese is but I’m sure he’s fine too. 2. Four Lions I love the interplay between the strong Muslim leads and the decadent west. This factual documentary shows how easy it is for the radicalisation of young Muslims to happen against the background of modern Britain. 3. The Inbetweeners 2 It’s just a banger what can I say.




@epigrammusic Editor: Gunseli Yalcinkaya

Deputy Editors: Alex Schulte; Caitlin Butler

Online Editor: Sam Mason-Jones


aschulte@epigram.org.uk; cbutler@epigram.org.uk


An Interview with Newton Faulkner

This week, Epigram Music host an interview special. Sam Mason-Jones, Music’s online editor, kicks things off with an interview with Newton Faulkner. The dreadlocked singer-songwriter talks Bieber, Scandanavia and cultural appropriation luck; well, it was and it wasn’t,’ he equivocates. ‘It was kind of the right thing at the right time. There were people making very calculated decisions on my behalf. Obviously I was writing most of the stuff but I was co-writing with different people, and in the process I was quite happy to be led in different directions. I used to really enjoy doing it, finding it almost educational to see how other people work.’ He goes on to suggest that the composition and reception of his first record finds a direct counterpoint in his latest. ‘With Human Love, we weren’t trying to tailor the record for radio play or to make it fit in a certain hole: I just don’t find that very satisfying,’ he outlines with the hint of a grimace. ‘I try to take off all the filters. I felt that there were limiters on before and the worry of pissing certain people off by doing certain things, but on this record I said, let’s just do whatever we want to do, let’s make the record we want to

flickr: Phil King

You will probably know Newton Faulkner as the ginger-dreaded acoustic-warrior responsible for ‘Dream Catch Me’, a tune with a hook catchy enough to see it still firmly wedged in unsyncable iPod Classics the country over, almost a decade since its inception. Following the orders of Sgt. Blunt, Faulkner led a late-noughties crusade, flanked by Messrs Morrison, Mraz and Nutini, to slake the nation’s apparently unquenchable thirst for inoffensive pop music, penned by guitar-toting singer-songwriters. But, nine years and four LPs since the release of double-platinum selling debut Hand Built By Robots, Faulkner is still plugging away where many of his former comrades have unfurled the white flag. Backstage at Colston Hall, where he is preparing to play the tenth show of a sizeable UK tour in support of fifth long-player Human Love, he considers the difference of approaches taken to the records which bookend his output. ‘The success of the first album was down to

flickr: Mike Gibson

make and just deal with it afterwards.’ ‘You can make a lot of money writing songs for the radio, but at the same time I don’t want to make a lot of money out of something that I don’t like doing. I know people who do that and they’re not happy,’ he continues, referring to the healthy airtime his debut received on the back of lead single, ‘Dream Catch Me’. ‘Obviously lots of people, myself included, have big hits early, but I don’t think success and ability are at all linked. The best musicians I know don’t make any money, but I know they are definitely the best.’ To evidence this dichotomy more succinctly, Faulkner points to the more pronounced duality in the classification of music in other cultures. ‘Iceland has different words for manufactured pop music and music that’s not for making money, like ‘art music’, music that actually means something. To have two completely different words, that’s really interesting.’ “Sweden even have this thing where they split music between the stuff that they would listen to at the gym or on the train, and stuff that they actually liked. They would listen to the former on MP3, while the stuff they actually liked they would take home and play on vinyl.’ In recent weeks, an artist who Faulkner would place squarely in the former bracket of manufactured, gym/train music, has embroiled the Reigate man in a cultural issue of very different sorts. When Justin Bieber shared a picture of his hair in dreadlocks with his 65 million Instagram followers, the debate over the hair style in question, and who should be allowed to wear it, blazed into the glare of the popular media. Scathing opinion pieces were rapidly plastered across Facebook and Twitter, while video footage of a white man with dreadlocks being accosted in San Francisco for wearing the hairstyle quickly went viral. The shared thrust of their criticism is this: the wearing of dreadlocks by white people represents a superficial acquisition of black culture (particularly that of Rastafarianism), and thus constitutes cultural appropriation. Faulkner, despite his recent public shearing in the video for ‘Get Free’, is known vaguely to many a less-discerning music fan as ‘that ginger bloke with dreadlocks’ and as such possesses a pretty unique voice on the matter. The singer wholeheartedly defends his decision to sport his dreads, citing an amount of careful research prior to making it: ‘Dreads have been part of so many cultures for so long and in so many different places, and there are so many different methods of doing it; it’s not the same, it’s not part of one culture. Hindu high priests used to have dreads, in Brazil people have

straight dreads, there’s mud dreads… It means a lot of different things to a lot of different people.’ After a moment’s thought, he goes on, ‘If I thought it was the property of one culture specifically, then that would be different. Take, for instance a Maori tribal tattoo, with the idiosyncratic colours and shapes: that’s completely Maori, there’s no one else. I would never wear a Maori tattoo.’ ‘Also it’s on my head, it’s hair. It’s not like it’s something outside that I’m bringing in, it’s not like I’m wearing someone else’s cultural clothes: it’s my hair. But even then if there was a hair thing that was intrinsically a part of someone else’s culture, then I think that would be different, but dreads have been around for a long time and in a lot of different places.’ Though the roots of this debate go deep down into the crust of social history, the spark requisite for its inflammation was delivered solely by social media and our ready access to vast amounts of information. This thought provokes an inevitable meditation upon music’s place in the age of the digital download, legal and otherwise. ‘As an artist you want as many people to hear your stuff as possible, but also you want to be able to feed your children; it’s a double-edged sword,’ he frowns. ‘I’m lucky enough to be a live musician, that’s my main thing,’ adds the singer, bisecting his craft between that of performer and recording artist. ‘If I didn’t or couldn’t gig, then I definitely wouldn’t make enough out of records to survive. I’ve sold over a million albums and that’s still not enough to make a living. That’s terrifying.’ ‘If you can’t make a living out of music, what’s going to happen to music as a whole? There will always be people making it- you can record stuff on a laptop- but historically the best music has been made by the people who have had the opportunity to dedicate their entire life to it. If that’s gone, then that changes things a lot.’ ‘Music defines whole eras, it’s quite a big cultural thing. I want it to be a career option rather than a hobby.’ He makes, as he has done consistently, quite a convincing point. And whilst shifting social landscapes and his own falling album sales seem to have rendered him pretty much out of the era-defining game for the time being, Newton Faulkner can always hold up the hand that helped to soundtrack, for better or for worse, the latter stages of the last decade. Sam Mason-Jones, Online Music Editor

Epigram 25.04.2016


Benjamin Francis-Leftwich

is everything. It is the purest, most beautiful thing; everything down to square one. I use so many metaphors of it in my songwriting. Growing up in Yorkshire, I was surrounded by coastline, forest, mountains, hills; it’s such an inspiration to me.’ The video in particular is apt. ‘We just wanted to film in a desolate but beautiful place, that reflected so much emotion and energy that I felt in the song.’ The name Tilikum itself is something so emotional. ‘I wanted to have a child, once. If I had had a baby, I would have called my child Tilikum. But I didn’t have the baby.’ The way Leftwich writes his music is through a totally individual method. ‘Songwriting is intensely personal. The creative process always is; it has to be. We only feel something if we

When you lose someone, the things they used to say become really important. And that’s what’s happened’. Everyone deals with grief in different ways. No one can prescribe a single method with which to best cope. But Leftwich has great empathy for those who are also suffering from a loss. ‘It’s okay to have bad days, bad weeks, bad months. Don’t punish yourself. Remember that the person you love, their spirit, will live on; it will be with you, forever. It is okay to feel sad. But use the pain to positive effect. Try to allow it to change your life as positively as you can, as difficult as that may sound.’ After The Rain is an outlet for Leftwich, for words and feelings that perhaps cannot fully be expressed any other way. There is a theme of grief running through, but it has other elements. ‘It covers so many different topics. I wrote it in different parts of the world, so there’s that geographical aspect. I took inspiration from many things around me. There is, of course, death and loss in this album, but there is hope and reflection in it too. I can’t tell every story for every song; each one would take too long. But the stories are there to listen to in the album’. In ‘Atlas Hands’, one of the songs from Leftwich’s debut album, he sings ‘my God is a good God and he cares.’ Although written in 2011, he sticks by this. ‘I believe it. Am I religious? I don’t know; I’m agnostic. If he or she comes down and says hello, then maybe I will believe, but I consider myself more spiritual than anything. I’m trying to grow spiritually, like millions of other people. So I guess I’m not religious in the strictest sense of the word.’ He doesn’t know if there is a definite God. ‘To me, someone like PJ Harvey or Bob Dylan is a god, John Lennon is a god. If you look at the impact people like that have had on so many lives and measure that in some kind of scientific or mathematical way, I’m sure there are many cases when they are greater than religion. So that’s the kind of god I was talking about.’ Leftwich’s latest song is the gorgeous ‘Tilikum’, the video for which has just been released. It is filmed in Dartmoor National Park, and is filled with shots of bleak, but beautiful, landscape. Nature is a strong influence for Leftwich. ‘Nature

flickr: Marcel van Leeuwen

flickr: Marcel van Leeuwen

What does it mean to live a human life? It is impossible to produce a defining answer difficult to even try. But there is one aspect of life that is universal. Each one of us will almost certainly have to face the pain of losing a loved one: it is an intrinsic part of the human

experience. We live and we die, and so do the ones around us. As such, we will suffer grief. For Benjamin Francis Leftwich, this experience has come too early. The singer-songwriter lost his father three years ago, two years after his debut album was released. He was 23. In February this year, Leftwich wrote an eloquent and deeply moving letter to his listeners, informing them of his loss and his attempts to cope with the grieving process. He also revealed news of a new album, to be released in August this year. This album is After The Rain. The significance of the title must certainly be acknowledged. The record is released after an intense period of suffering and pain for Leftwich. The loss of his father left him ‘helpless, without purpose’. Having had such a close relationship with his father, his overwhelming grief nearly eradicated his motivation to write music. Despite this near debilitation, he has since managed to find the strength to move forward again. His new album is a kind of purification, a sense of cleansing after a storm of pain. ‘I’m releasing these songs after a time when I feel I was asleep in my mind. This period of numbness I see as a kind of rain.’ The rain, though, is not wholly detrimental. ‘Rain is not destructive. It helps things grow. I’m proud of the album title and I’m proud of the album. It is, and still continues to be, a process of rebirth.’ The title also holds nostalgic power for Leftwich. ‘I had a skylight in my room in York; I was living there between tours. When I opened the window, the view was stunning. I could see all the way to the town, and beyond to the Yorkshire Moors. The day after a storm is the best, the most beautiful. I love the smell of rain.’ His grieving process has shaped both the writing and performing of his music, and so too has his music been a way to channel his grief. ‘I can’t handpick a direct correlation exactly; that kind of event influences everything. I don’t really see a distinction between my music and my personal life. It is inextricably linked.’ The experience has been hugely influential. ‘It changed everything. It is a huge part of my life.’ His father’s presence is everywhere in Leftwich’s music. ’He was always talking about lyrics; he always pressed me to work on them. So I do.

can connect with it, emotionally engage with it, believe in it. I write my songs as a channel for my personal self.’ Leftwich’s new album will be released to the world soon. It is something to look forward to; no doubt it will be stunning, like his thusreleased material. Tilikum is a lovely song; much like the man who wrote it. Leftwich is humble and thoughtful, and this album deserves to do well, not only for its content. He describes it in four words; ‘beautiful, honest, expansive, brutal.’ There could hardly be four words more aptly chosen. Caitlin Butler, Deputy Music Editor

Jamie Woon

flickr: scannerFM

Perhaps the best way to describe Jamie Woon is as an enigma. His music straddles genres; is it soul or electronica? RnB or hip-hop? Or does it fill that slippery genre which one cannot, or maybe will not, quite put one’s finger to; post-dubstep? Who the heck knows? His history is equally as puzzling. Five years ago, the future seemed set for the singer-songwriter. Woon came fourth in the BBC Sound Of 2011 poll, and was hotly tipped for success. He released his debut album, Mirrorwriting, which did well in the UK charts and was fairly well received. But in May of that year, a number of shows were cancelled, with Woon citing injury as reason he was unable to perform. It took him four years before he threw himself back into the public eye and managed to gather the strength to release new music. It is unclear why he did not capitalise on his initial success sooner, but he will not elaborate on that score. He does, however, elaborate on his latest offering. Last year saw the release of Woon’s first music since Mirrorwriting. ‘Sharpness’ was unleashed in August, before eventual news of Woon’s new album, which arrived in November. He is immensely proud of this new record, Making Time. The title is very apt. ‘It’s a bit of a vague pun on a few things I was thinking about. Everyone kept asking me why it was taking me so long to release new music, so there’s that. I had writers block, but also periods of being really productive. Everything on this record comes from the rhythm, I guess, from the rhythm of time’. And what’s he been doing during the period of low output? To what extent did he lay idle? ‘I was always making music, but it’s only now I’ve finally got it out to the world again.’ And how did the period of low productivity shape his new material? ‘I really wanted to feel like I was moving in the right direction. I was just lucky I had the

time. It took me a while to find the right people to make the record with. I didn’t want to obsess over my laptop every day; I wanted it to be very much a collaborative process.’ In Woon’s new shows, he plays with a number of other musicians; an experience relatively new for him. But it’s been a positive one. ‘When I started out, it was just me and my acoustic guitar. I worked with the drum and bass player a while ago, but we briefly went our separate ways when the record came out. But working with him again feels like we’ve completed some unfinished business. The band as a whole is still a fairly new thing, but it’s been going really well. I’ve got great people around me; really good vibes.’ The new songs were written, in fact, with the band in mind. The performance of them was important to Woon from the beginning. ‘I love playing with the band. This tour has been really fun. People actually know the songs this time round, which is great.’ Making Time musically is something of a

departure from his previous material. ‘It is bare; stripped back. It’s hard to describe. I guess it’s kind of an ode to being a musician. It has no adornments, it’s just about the music, and especially these musicians in particular. This album has been more of a social thing, us working together, and we’ve decided to cut it back and cut things back to the bare bones. It’s very minimalist.’ Woon is very clear about his influences. He cites soul and RnB as the main impacts on his music. ‘I love all that neo-soul stuff; D’Angelo, Common, J Dilla, Bilal.’ His lyrics are consistently clever, subtle. In ‘Sharpness’ he asks if it is ‘written on his back’. What relevance do these words have? ‘It’s about the push and pull of being in a relationship with someone; the attraction and the friction. Ultimately, though, it does feel better being with someone than without.’ In terms of Woon’s Sound Of accolade, he is ambivalent. ‘At the time I was a bit overwhelmed with it, because I suddenly had all this attention.

It wasn’t something I put myself up for, someone else decided. It is nice to be recognized, but sometimes I can be a bit cynical about it. I don’t want something shoved down my throat. But I guess these things highlight new music, because there’s so much out there, and sometimes musicians starting out need a helping hand. It’s best to just take it for what it is, which for me, was a bit of publicity. But they can be a bit narrow in their scope. I think awards can rely too much simply on what’s fashionable.’ He appreciates music streaming sites, however, despite the lack of recognition they give to artists. ‘I’m a music lover; Spotify is a music lover’s dream. I remember the days of CD players where I could only carry five CD’s around with me. There were great things in that; I had to give CDs a proper chance if I bought them. Now, there’s so much stuff around I don’t necessarily give new music as much of a chance. I won’t deny, though, the sheer variety is amazing.’ Woon posits a semi-communist vision of streaming sites. ‘The amount they pay us is scandalous. Someone’s making so much money out of it. The owner’s a billionaire. But it would be interesting to stage some kind of revolution; if artists got what they deserve, people would be more inclined to become musicians full time. It would be great to see what kind of new music is produced. There’s so much money in it, it just all goes to the top. Like most of society.’ Interesting. Perhaps his new music will cause an uprisinge; will the musicians unite and cause the CEO of Spotify to tremble? After all, they have nothing but loads of money to lose. Perhaps not, however. Instead, we can appreciate Woon for what he is; maybe not the Marx of the modern music industry, but someone with a good voice and clever lyrics. Give his new music a listen; it is enjoyable. Maybe not the key to unlocking the fall of capitalism, but a good time nonetheless. Caitlin Butler, Deputy Music Editor




‘I want people to be proud of Bristol’

New Sport and Development Officer, John House, and new Sports Chair, Grace Youell, have big plans for Bristol, as Malik Ouzia found out…

job next year. What do you think went well this year and what would you like to see changed? GY: I think the publicity it attracted afterwards was good. I know you guys did match reports for lots of the games and I think that should happen for every single sport. But I think in the build up there needs to be more awareness about it. JH: Yeah, I think in the build up towards varsity there’s a lot more the university could do to promote it. Things like getting buses arranged to take people to places. Half the time Bristol students won’t go to something because it’s up a hill.

I’m not saying I want people to go crazy but I’d like Bristol to have a bit more of a buzz about University sport and Varsity.

JH: One of my plans is to do at least a monthly newsletter that says ‘This team has done superbly well’ or ‘This player in particular has been brilliant. Coming up we’ve got this, this and this, here’s how you can go and watch it.’ I haven’t worked out how yet but I want screens around uni in all the libraries on Wednesdays that say ‘This is the current score’ so people can follow that. GY: Getting departments on board are key too. My personal tutor asked me the other day whether I played any sport. I was just like ‘Yeah, why don’t you know?’. It’s quite strange so getting a newsletter out to heads of department so they’re aware of who plays sport and is involved in their department. To hear more from John and Grace, be sure to head to www.epigram. org.uk for the full interview!


John you said if you’d lost to UWE you’d take the team into exile in Siberia. JH: (laughs) I stand by that… How much of your roles next year is about the performance side of things in BUCS and at Varsity, and how much is about getting people involved at participation level? JH: Performance is always going to be important and obviously I love seeing people do well. I’ll definitely support them on it and anything I can do to help clubs push their performance side, I will do. But for me getting more people into sport, getting people realizing how much there is you can do at Bristol, getting clubs running more open sessions. It is still a little bit closed at Bristol, so for me participation is slightly above performance.

GY: I think in terms of our role, performance is kind of bringing together club captains and transferring what works in some clubs into others. That’s where we can come in. How do you see the Bristol brand being developed? If you go to Bath, for example, the whole place is decked out in blue and yellow… JH: I certainly want a greater display of successes and alumni. I always use volleyball as an example because I know it but we’ve won five league titles in three years and you wouldn’t know it. We have the trophies, I promise, I’ve seen them, but they seem to have been put it a cupboard. When we went to Warwick there were massive pictures of all the teams put up all around the hall. It’s simple stuff like that, just to make you feel like when you go in there ‘This is what I’m representing, this is something to be proud of.’ Another thing is I hate the hashtag. GY: (appalled) #MightyMaroon?!?! It’s because you don’t have Instagram. Have you got an alternative? JH: I’m looking into it. Every successful sports team has their name in it. If you tweet #mightymaroon someone doesn’t actually know it’s Bristol. It’s too long as well, you only have 140 characters, it’s a nightmare, but it also doesn’t actually say Bristol. Maroon’s not the most unique of colours. GY: We went to play Bath in the cup and three people I know at Bath text me saying ‘Oh you guys are coming to play.’ They receive weekly newsletters of the fixtures. That’s definitely something we could do, send out fixtures to all students of big upcoming games to go and watch.

Twitter: Twitter: @Atl_Castaways @WaterbabiesRow

How important is it that you’ve both captained sports teams at the University (Volleyball for John, Basketball for Grace)? JH: I think it’s vital. Most of the stuff I want to change is stuff that I’ve experienced problems with myself. It allows you to identify big problems that need to be tackled. But running a club you also get an idea of what you can achieve; in volleyball we’ve got 140 members, 60 of whom were complete beginners who we got into the sport. GY: It’s important also for the contacts. We know people in the Union and SEH (Sport, Exercise and Health) who can help and we’ve had an opportunity to make a plan and then work on it. Like John was saying, we know what can actually be done. John, you’re in a full time role. Is it going to be weird being in Bristol without having to worry about studies? JH: I can’t wait, I’m incredibly sick of learning (laughs). I’m looking forward to feeling a little bit grown up and actually doing something that feels like a proper job. I’m still living with three other students so aspects of my life will still be studenty, mainly nights out. Grace, yours is a part-time role. Are you worried about the time management side of things? You’ll still be studying and playing basketball too. GY: (alarmingly relaxed) Oh yeah, it’ll be fine. I’m good at time

management. Okay so it’s this time next year. There’s one thing that’s happened in the past year that you can look back at and say ‘That means I did a good job.’ What is it? JH: For me it’d be changing the attitude towards sport at Bristol. I’d like to look back at the year and say we had more people going to matches, there’s been more of a buzz around BUCS. I want people to be able to know ‘Wow, this is how well our rugby team did, this is how well our hockey team is doing.’ I want us to be proud of what we’re doing here. GY: More connection between the participation and performance sides. I think a lot of people think Bristol sport is very elitist and it is in a lot of clubs, so making that connection would be a nice legacy to leave. John, in your last interview with us you felt that there was ‘Apathy towards sport’ and that it felt ‘Cooler to not support a team.’ Has the Varsity series done anything to change that? JH: It’s been nice because it’s shown me that what I want to do is achievable. Varsity shouldn’t be the exception anymore. It shows that people do want to see our sports teams play. I want people to be interested and to be proud of Bristol. Obviously the rugby is a slight exception because we’re not going to be playing in a stadium all the time but it shows that people are interested. I’ve always found that when we do something well it’s a polite round of applause and then we move on. You go to other teams and people lose their heads. I’m not saying I want people to go crazy but I’d like Bristol to have a bit more of a buzz about it. Organising Varsity is part of your

Twitter: Joel@Atl_Castaways Wright

Facebook: University of Bristol Sport

Malik Ouzia Online Sport Editor




Brazilian Ju-Jitsu medal haul at national championships

BUCS Wednesday Men’s Fencing: Bristol 116-125 Swansea Men’s Futsal: Bristol 15-10 UWE Women’s lacrosse: Bristol 5-13 Birmingham Women’s netball: Bristol 42-29 Cardiff Women’s rugby: Bristol 10-22 Birmingham

Women’s tennis: Bristol 0-12 Loughborough Men’s squash: Bristol 3-2 Swansea Women’s squash: Bristol 1-3 Roehampton Women’s volleyball: Bristol 3-0 Cardiff Women’s basketball: Bristol 38-36 Bath Men’s badminton: Bristol 6-2 Swansea For more results, head to www.epigram.org.uk Jacbo Best

Anonymous Sports Reporter

Continued from pg. 48 give Bristol breathing space at the end of the first half.

The second half started in a similar way to the end of the first, with Hussle again causing the problems. He duly got his second after the ball was

Every Friday from 4pm5pm, Epigram Sport preview the upcoming weekend of football on Burst Radio! If you want to certain topics to be discussed, tweet us @EpigramSport. Be sure to tune in!

Jacbo Best

The first ever national University Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu competition was held this Saturday (12th March 2016) at Nottingham University run by the national BJJ governing body, the UKBJJA. The small team of six, from Bristol, led by president Jake Best, brought back a massive haul of four golds, one silver and one bronze in Nottingham this weekend. Jake posted on the Facebook group earlier today: ‘Massively proud of the team who came

up to represent the university and the club by competing in Nottingham. Great fights, great results and great competition. We are looking forward to sending a bigger team next year. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is one of the fastest growing martial arts within universities around the UK. The sport includes practical grappling skills, selfdefence, with an innovative style that has historically given fighters an edge in mixed martial arts events like the UFC. Training is every Sunday evening at 8pm with other sessions throughout the week. Sign up to https://www. facebook.com/groups/uobbjjc/ for all details.

Friday Football Show

pulled back and he slapped it into the bottom left corner beyond the helpless keeper. Bristol kept up the pressure, with Hussell forcing yet another short corner. UWE were not able to pick the move from the creative away team, and Wilson finished well, sliding in from close range. After a little spell of possession UWE got a goal back after a short corner, with the ball being squeezed under McNaught in the Bristol goal.

Credit: Will Cuningham

The award comes after Hussell scored four times as the University of Bristol Men’s 1s hockey team handed UWE a 7-1 thrashing

The game was opening up and Bristol continued to create chances. A foot foul secured their fifth with

Hussell finishing well from another well-worked routine to complete his hat-trick. Cairns then decided to get in on the goals and, after finding himself in the UWE box, took the ball around one defender before expertly finishing in the top left corner. Hussell nearly got another after a good flick by Cairns, both of whom were by now running the show, but the ball was scrambled away by the home defence. The dying moments still brought plenty of action, with Hussell converting his fourth following a short corner. The last action of the second half brought out an important block from Bray in front of McNaught as UWE looked for another consolation goal. It wasn’t to be though and the game was brought to an end to the delight of a very dominant Bristol team. Epigram Sport would like to congratulate all four candidates on their incredible performances for the Mighty Maroon!

Fantasy Football

Epigram Sport is running its very own Barclays Fantasy Premier League. Feel free to join! Liga de Epigram Code: 1568501-366592 Good Luck!





Editor: Marcus Price

Deputy Editor: James O’Hara Online Editor: Malik Ouzia

sport@epigram.org.uk @marcusprice106

deputysport@epigram.org.uk @JamesOHara14

sportonline@epigram.org.uk @MalikOuzia

Jordan Hussell crowned inaugural Star of Varsity after inspiring UBMHC win Jack Franklin Sports Reporter

Facebook/ Capture Cre8 Photography

Hockey star Jordan Hussell has won the inaugural Star of Varsity award, narrowly beating rugby hero Tilly Vaughan-Fowler into second place. The Star of Varsity competition, created to highlight individual brilliance amongst Bristol’s 12-7 victory over UWE, saw almost 2000 votes cast amongst the nominees on a four-person shortlist. Hussell triumphed, with 39 per cent of the vote ahead of VaughanFowler, whose six tries catapulted UBWRFC to victory. Basketball MVP Ana Petrovska was third after her stand-out performance in Bristol’s shock win over UWE, whilst UBAFC’s Sam Murray finished fourth after netting a brace in the Varsity opener. The award comes after Hussell scored four times as the University of Bristol Men’s 1s hockey team handed UWE 1s a thrashing in a 7-1 victory on their own ground. A big crowd were in attendance as UoB gave the away fans plenty to chant about. UWE kicked off the

match but were on the back foot immediately as Bristol applied a high press. UWE, however, had the first chance of the half, as Bristol lost the ball in the midfield and were grateful that the ball was hit onto the outside of the post and not a couple of inches to the left.

This was the only real chance they had in the opening stages as Bristol won two short corners in quick succession and were unlucky not to open the scoring, denied by some brave goalkeeping. Soon after, Bristol did get on the scoreboard. Padfield’s strength with the ball down the left

led to the ball being fed to that man Hussell who finished past the keeper. UWE struggled to get out of their own half, as Bristol dominance continued to be the theme of the game. Hussell nearly created the second goal for Bristol as he got in behind the defence down the left but

there was no-one on hand to convert his pull back. Tom Wilson then went close from a short corner, before Bristol got their second. Also from a short corner, the initial shot was blocked but Harford followed in to

Continued on page 47

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