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Students slam landlords and letting agents in survey Conor Bollins
The results of this year’s Rate Your Landlord survey has highlighted many of the problems faced by students living in and around the Brighton and Hove area when renting privatesector accommodation. An annual survey has been conducted since 2009 and this year, for the first time, the University of Brighton’s Students’ Union participated as well. The University of Sussex’s Students’ Union has compiled a report from the survey’s results, which attributes student dissatisfaction with “poor practice among landlords and letting agents”. It shows that that while 44.4 percent of students find their housing through letting agents, “private landlords are providing a significantly better service than their letting agent counterparts”. Apparently 30.8 percent more respondents reported satisfactory landlords if they used StudentPad to find their accommodation as opposed to letting agents. Many students found letting agents deceitful - lying about the kinds of furniture being provided, withholding information and even being dishonest about rent prices. There are many instances of letting agents being rude and unhelpful. Some letting agents have also been known to pressure students into signing contracts by encouraging competition between groups seeking property. This has led to students feeling exploited after they have made decisions that they later regret. Jo Goodman, the union’s Welfare Officer, told the Badger about what the union has done this academic year to help students. She said: “This year we ran a number of Housing Talks in conjunc-
tion with the Housing Office which were attended by several hundred students and we continue to produce guidance to students on living in the private rented sector. “This year for the first time we produced some initial findings of the RateYour Landlord survey in time for the University’s Housing Fair so that students were able to learn from the experiences of others.” There are still, however, recurring problems that students have to face. Worryingly, only a fifth of those who gave information about previous tenancies said they had received their deposit in full after moving out. Over 70 percent of students reported having been required to provide a UK based homeowner as guarantor to avoid paying larger deposits up front. For those who were unable to fulfil this requirement, an average of four months’ rent was requested up front although some reported being charged up to a year’s rent in advance
to secure the tenancy. Two students told the Badger about a particular letting agency on Queens Road that they had difficulty with. On one occasion the agency told a
ogy student her deposit at the end of her tenancy, when they found a small stain on her flatmate’s carpet. Problems that students encountered during their tenancies have included
Only a fifth of respondents said they received their deposit in full after moving out student that he had to find a guarantor within 24-hours of placing his safety deposit in order to secure a property. When he failed to do so, they kept his money and gave the room to someone else. The same agency refused to refund a third-year psychol-
finding their houses inadequately cleaned upon moving in, mould and damp problems not being resolved and receiving visits from landlords, letting agents and repair workers with little notice. A common complaint was that
there was a lack of communication between tenants and landlords. Only 34.4 percent of people who took part in the survey felt that their landlord or letting agent provided good value for money. Although some people are paying rents under £70 per week, the average rent is between £85 and £90 a week – with a significant number of students spending £100.The report also found that first-year students are more likely to pay over £100. In addition to this, it was found that first-years were less likely to know about deposit protection schemes. This could reflect that there is a large problem this year with students being thrown into the housing market without enough information. By September, the number of bed spaces on campus will have significantly increased due to the construction of the new accommodation, Northfield. Continued on page 3 >>
The full report shows that private landlords are providing students a better service than their letting agents counterparts. Photo: Students’ Union
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In pictures: work and play in the summer term
Above: Students enjoy being outside on campus during brief work respite
Above: Students in the library canâ€™t escape the inevitability of work as final deadlines draw close Photos: Polina Belehhova
Editors-in-chief Juliet Conway Eleanor Griggs firstname.lastname@example.org
News editors Raziye Akkoc Sam Brodbeck Inês Klinesmith
Features editors Kieran Burn Joe Jamieson email@example.com
Comment editor Marcelle Augarde firstname.lastname@example.org
Letters editor Rosie Pearce email@example.com
Arts editor-in-chief Olivia Wilson firstname.lastname@example.org
Arts editors Lucy Atkinson Samantha Graham Wanjiru Kariuki Sophie Moonshine Joseph Preston Lily Rae Louise Ronnestad Jessie Thompson Harry Yeates
Listings editor Olivia James
Science editors Natasha Agabalyan Thomas Lessware email@example.com
Photo editor Polina Belehhova
Sports editor Ben Denton Matt Stroud
Sub-editors Luke Guinness Sydney Sims Barnaby Suttle
Students’ Union Communications Officer
Sol Schonfield firstname.lastname@example.org
The Badger holds weekly open writers’ meetings Friday, 1.30pm Falmer House, Room 126
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Dispatches looking for students who have issues with landlords and letting agents << Continued from page 1 While this will ensure that a majority of students who want to live on campus will be able to do so, this addition will be at the top of the price range, along with Swanborough. The university is also expecting a large intake at the start of the next academic year as potential students strive to avoid the forthcoming tuition fee hike. The Students’ Union is therefore planning to support students who will need to rent privately by helping them to make informed decisions. Jo Goodman, who is responsible for compiling the report, said that the union will be continuing to raise the profile of the RateYour Landlord survey and its findings. She added, “We will be able to put pressure on local letting agents and landlords to provide a better service to students. “We have also been working closely with the university and local council to establish ways of driving up standards for students living in the community.” The Students’ Union also met with Channel 4’s Dispatches last week to discuss the findings of the survey. The programme-makers are seeking students who are having trouble with landlords and letting agents.
If students wish to contact the programme-makers with their stories, they can do so via e-mail: tilly@
hardcashproductions.com. To see the full report and how Brighton’s letting agents did in the
survey as well as getting some hints and tips, visit www.sussexstudent. com/rateyourlandlord
Column chart showing how surveyed students found their accomodation Graph: Jo Goodman
Rise in university fees may affect Brighton’s economy Sebastian Noble Increasing university fees could damage Brighton’s economy A recent report has suggested that a dramatic increase in tuition fees could damage Brighton and the surrounding area’s economy. The report, from Centre for Cities named Brighton and Hove as a city having the eighth highest level of undergraduate spending in the UK, with £324.5 million a year contributed, or 5.3% of the city’s economic activity. It is suggested that university cities may lose out economically from fee increase. Undergraduate spending is considered important in the report, which names 10 cities with large student populations which contribute economically. It is feared that setting fees at a maximum of £9,000 a year, may decrease demand for university places. The idea is some universities will have difficulty attracting students, which will negatively impact on the university and wider city economy. A spokesman from the University of Brighton expressed confidence stating: “We have attracted nearly 40,000 applicants this year... and we are confident that students will continue to value the high-quality
professional and socially and economically-relevant degree courses that we offer.” Meanwhile in a statement the University of Sussex said “We do not believe that the new fee regime will reduce the number of students coming to the University of Sussex, since we currently receive over
for some potential students from economically disadvantaged backgrounds to apply, it was assured by the University of Sussex that “we are of course keen to ensure that talented students from poorer backgrounds are able to take advantage of the high quality education Sussex provides.
Brighton’s universities add over £1 billion to the local economy or 5.3% of the city’s economic activity 18,000 applications for just 2,500 places.” The university explained how a strict government cap prevents the admission of more home and EU students, but that plans are already in place to increase student numbers with additional international students attracted to study here, with a “25% increase in overseas numbers in the last year”. Although the increase in tuition fees may decrease opportunities
Our First Generation Scholarship scheme will provide direct financial support and practical help, before, during and after studying here.” “The fee repayments will of course not be paid while students are studying, but only once they leave and are earning over £21,000.” This suggests that students who have loans will not necessarily have to consciously reduce their spending behaviour.
Brighton’s universities already provide an economic ‘boost’. An independent report commissioned by the universities of Brighton and Sussex showed the institutions added over £1 billion to the local economy of Brighton and Hove and the south east. Sussex has stated “[the university] makes a very significant contribution to the economy in the city of Brighton and Hove, and the wider south east region”. In addition, involvement in the local economy will continue with “demand for work experience, internships for skills development, volunteering and paid employment increases.” This can enhance student opportunities with skills and experience and the University of Sussex “will be working even more actively with local employers and organisations to ensure our students can access such opportunities.” The city will not necessarily become less popular, as the statement from the University of Sussex says “Thriving and attractive cities such as Brighton [...] can provide a high quality education experience, a remarkable cultural life, great social experience and good part-time employment opportunities, plus acting as a good base for finding graduate level jobs across the south-east region”
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University of Brighton splits from the National Union of Students Harry Yeatman The Brighton University Students’ Union (BUSU) has voted to discontinue its affiliation with the National Union of Students (NUS) for the rest of the academic year. The referendum took place during their Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Sunday 15 May. The result means that the BUSU is now an independent entity. The vote is being seen as a protest to both the BUSU and the NUS after their actions this year. A member of the group Brighton Against Cuts commented: “the motion had been put forward beforehand but never seriously discussed. As is the nature of these AGM’s, the small attendance is generally not representative of the main student body.
“That said, there is a lot of genuine anger at the BUSU and the NUS. “The BUSU haven’t supported our occupations this year (in protest against cuts) or helped with the rallies in Brighton. “Bad feeling toward the NUS from students is well known across the country, not just here, especially concerning the November protest
in London; it was this which basically resulted in this protest vote. “We’re not sure if the motion will be passed again next year, there’s no organised plan for that yet. “Personally, I’m not sure the result was a good thing but I by no means speak for everyone.” Recently, NUS president Aaron Porter was put under pressure by students across the country for
Brighton’s universities add over £1 billion to the local economy or 5.3% of the city’s economic activity
being seen as “passive” in relation to the fight against the Coalition government’s education cuts. Additionally, the NUS is no longer being seen as the best way for students to represent themselves. On the 9 December last year, the day the tuition fee bill was passed through parliament the one thousand people that attended the NUS candlelight vigil on Victoria embankment was blocked by 30,000 people from a coalition of anti-cuts groups that marched from the University of London Union to Parliament in Westminster. When questioned upon what the NUS thought of the Brighton disaffiliation, President Aaron Porter provided a statement: “Under the rules of affiliation, members remain affiliated until 31 December - and so we will of course continue to fully support the
students’ union and work closely with their officers in the usual way until this time. Equally, I would very much hope that such an important decision as disaffiliation is opened up to the whole student body, and that all students are able to have their say through a referendum.” The BUSU did not respond when contacted in time for publication. However, on the BUSU website, the union describe their policy: “You can also attend the Annual General Meeting (often called an AGM), where ordinary students can propose motions to make Union Policy. This policy, if passed then binds the actions of the Union and its officers.” In accordance with the BUSU’s policy, it appears that that whilst the small attendance may well have skewed the results, the decision was entirely democratic.
Save our service: the Big Lemon raises over £200 in benefit gig Sam Brodbeck News editor The battle to save the Big Lemon bus gained steam last Monday night in a Brighton bar. The environmentally-friendly and award-winning bus company held a benefit gig at the Latest Music Bar in Kemptown. Over £200 was raised as members of various Brighton communities came together for a heady night of singing, dancing and donating. Founder and driver of the Big Lemon, Tom Druitt, has announced a series of fundraisers in the last few months as Brighton and Hove buses attempt to gain a larger market share. The city’s largest bus company, Brighton and Hove Buses, has reduced fares and started to run more buses along routes it shares with the Lemon. The Benefit Gig had no cover charge, instead donations were collected in buckets held by Lemon supporters and even some of the night’s performers. A crowd of a hundred students, environmentalists, Big Lemon enthusiasts and bus staff turned out to help keep Brighton’s alternative public transport service running. Four acts kept the passionate throng entertained before the stage was cleared for an ‘epic pop, party, electro, hip-hop disco’ until the early hours. Nine-piece The Red Diamond Dragon Club (featuring University of Sussex MA student Philippa Neville on drums) headlined the event with their electro-folk and were ably supported by Dan Rumsey, Jenni Boyce and Cosmo – who wowed the audience with his modern take on the one-man
band. The Red Diamond Dragon Club said that they “have appreciated the services of the Big Lemon to and from many rehearsals, and it is our pleasure to do our bit to make sure that small, progressive, juicy businesses aren’t left withered and dry by the cold logic of neoliberalism”. They will be playing another live gig in aid of the Lemon later in the summer. Before heading off for his driving shift, Druitt thanked the crowd, saying: “Only in Brighton would people put on a gig to raise money for a failing bus company.” In March, The Badger reported that a petition of nearly 2,000 signatures – the biggest petition presented to Brighton and Hove council over the last year – was calling on city leaders to monitor the situation between the rival bus companies. Concerns over fair competition between the businesses were supported by Mike Weatherley, the Conservative MP for Hove. Since then, new routes and services offered by Brighton and Hove buses has had a devastating effect. The Lemon has “suffered a big loss in revenue” and is fighting for its survival. There is hope on the horizon, however, as it was announced on Wednesday 18 May that the bus service has been named as a finalist in the 2011 Ashden Awards for Sustainable Energy. On 16 June five UK winners will be announced and will each receive £10,000 to continue their work. One of the five will be selected as the winner of the Gold Award and receive an additional £20,000 in recognition of their work in creat-
ing “practical solutions to combat climate change.” To date there has been 120 Ashden award winners across the UK and developing world. Sarah Butler-Sloss, Founder and Director of the awards said of The Big Lemon: “This environmentally-friendly enterprise is leading the way in sustainable travel by offering convenient, comfortable and affordable public transport. “It gives those without cars the freedom to get around easily, and encourages those with cars to switch to public transport in order to help address climate change.” It is currently £150 a year for unlimited travel on Big Lemon services and there are 583 members doing so. Since launching in 2007 approximately 384,000 passenger journeys have been made. Kevin McCloud, presenter of Grand Designs, and TV producer John Lloyd will be among those speaking at the ceremony in June. Previous winners include such disparate individuals and organisations such as Grameen Shakti who helped provide 65,000 homes in Bangladesh with solar-home systems, Leeds City Council, Ringmer Community College in East Sussex and the Kisangani Smith Group, who have developed energy efficient biomass stoves to be made by blacksmiths in Tanzania. Staff, supporters and many students will be hoping the Big Lemon can join this impressive group and secure an award that would ensure that it remains a fixture on the streets of Brighton and continues to provide an ecological alternative.
The Red Diamond Dragon Club performed at the Big Lemon Benefit Gig Photo: thereddiamonddragonclub.imgur.com/
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Sussex soars to 11th in university league Raziye Akkoc News editor
The Boston SlutWalk: women march against blaming sexual violence on the victims Photo: Daily Telegraph
Thousands expected to join Brighton’s first SlutWalk Ellen Stewart FromToronto toTrafalgar Square, now Brighton may be joining the notorious ‘Slut Walk’ movement in a protest next month. On 4 June thousands of women are expected to take to the streets of the capital in a protest against sexist remarks in the first of Britain’s SlutWalks. The march comes after Canadian police officer, Michael Sanguinetti, reportedly told students at Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto that: “Women should avoid dressing like sluts in order not to be victimised.” Brighton campaigners are hoping to organise a walk to coincide with the event in Trafalgar Square after being outraged by Sanguinetti’s damning remarks. More than 3,000 people took part in the first ‘SlutWalk’ in Toronto last month in order to “re-appropriate” the word slut.The aim of the movement, say
organisers, is to shed light on the blame culture in which the victim rather than the rapist or abuser is at fault. Soho-based writer and feminist blog contributor, Laura Woodhouse said: “The event aims to challenge the default social position of ‘Don’t get raped’ and replace it with ‘Don’t rape’, taking the focus of the victims.” ‘Slut Walk’ organisers are encouraging people of all genders, races, ages, religions and sexualities to join the march to raise their voices “hemlines and heels,” in order to bring about awareness of this apparent misogynistic blame culture. Vicky Simister, founder of the London Anti-Street Harassment campaign said: “The idea that, if you look like what society thinks is a slut, you’re somehow responsible is repugnant.” She continued: “Only 6.5% of all rape cases end in conviction. That shows this attitude is extremely dangerous.”
Feminist spokespeople appear to be divided by the walk, some claim it empowers women while others suggest the walk is evidence that women are accepting a label given to them by men. Jo-Anne Nadler, Conservative author of ‘Too Nice to be a Tory’ said she was facing up to the reality that: “If you’re dressed up like a teenage hooker, you’re wandering around late at night, you’re drunk, you are probably less in a position to protect yourself against attack than you might otherwise be.” While some are warning women to be aware of the messages they may be giving off, others are calling for them to embrace their femininity and use clothing as a way of expressing their sexuality without the fear of sexual harassment or assault. More information on Slut Walks in Brighton and across the UK can be found at www.facebook.com/ slutwalkuk.
Brighton Pride to charge fee Ellen Stewart This summer the Brighton Pride event at Preston Park will come at a cost, for the first time in its 19-year history. The usually free festival will now be charging up to £17.50 for a ticket to the main event at Preston Park. Organisers of Brighton Pride, Pride South East Ltd, hope that the introduction of ticketing will discourage homophobic protesters, underage drinking and anti-social behaviour. The new and far more costly Pride 2011 has sparked some controversy within the LGBT community with some suggesting a lack of transparency between organisers and the public. Last week, the Badger wrongly reported that a free alternative to Pride, called ‘The Official Alternative’ would be taking place on 13th August 2010. The Badger can now clarify that as well as Pride and the free alternative to Pride, a fake Pride has surfaced and added further confusion. The University of Sussex LGBTQ will be hosting a number of free events across the city as an alternative to the ticketed festival at the park. ‘Brighton & Hove Community Pride’ supports an inclusive and fun-
filled occasion saying that: “Charging for Pride contradicts the ethos of such an event and alienates those who can’t afford it.” Kelly McBride, Sussex student and Sussex LGBTQ representative said that the event aimed for a Pride that the whole community could engage with. She expressed that the alternative was not actively discouraging people from attending Preston Park. Writing on the ‘Brighton & Hove Community Pride’ Facebook page Alexandra Spurrier said: “It feels like your taking Pride back to its roots.” Sussex LGBTQ and LGBrighTon
societies believe that pride is a state of mind and have said: “That to celebrate one’s sexuality is a necessary political statement.” As usual the Pride parade will be free but those wishing to attend attraction such as the dance tent, cabaret tent, live stage and funfair will have to purchase tickets, either in advance or on the day. Georgina Powell, Sussex student and pride veteran, said: “I think it’s a shambles, Pride is a community celebration not an excuse to make money.” She added: “I don’t think as many people will turnup knowing they have to pay just to get into the park.”
Charging for Pride contradicts the ethos of such an event and alienates those who can’t afford it
The University of Sussex is now 11th place in the Guardian’s University Guide 2012, up four places from 15th. The news comes after the Independent ranked the university in the top 20 for a second year in a row. The university has seven subjects in the top ten. They are: American studies, English, media, anatomy and physiology, biosciences, computer sciences and IT as well as physics. In addition to the above, the university has 12 subjects in the top 20 including maths, philosophy and chemistry. Brighton and Sussex Medical School (BSMS) was placed 18th. In response to the increase, the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Michael Farthing, said: “It is gratifying to see
our ambitions for Sussex converted into this latest - and highest ever Guardian ranking, particularly as this has been achieved during challenging times for us all in the higher education sector. “Our efforts to add real quality to the student experience are reflected in this ranking, which places emphasis on student satisfaction, but I believe we can - and will - continue to improve across the board in terms of research excellence, financial support for students, graduate employment prospects and quality of facilities.” Position
Starbucks admits it ‘didn’t get it right’ Dan Bond The head of the global coffee chain Starbucks has admitted the firm got it wrong when they opened a branch in Kemp Town, Brighton, without planning permission. The multinational company sparked protests from community groups when they opened an outlet on St James’s Street in 2008, despite being refused permission to use the site as a cafe or restaurant by Brighton and Hove City Council. Starbucks’ CEO and chairman Howard Schultz made the admission on Jeremy Vine’s show, after the firm’s conduct was questioned by the Radio 2 host. Mr Schultz said: “I think in that particular case there were certainly things that in hindsight we would do differently today. “That is an isolated situation we’re trying to work through and I don’t think we got that right.” After opening without planning
permission, Starbucks was ordered to cease operating as a cafe by the council, and became the subject of a community campaign. A group called ‘Stop Starbucks from Opening on St James’s Street’ organised regular protests and a petition signed by thousands of campaigners against the branch’s opening. The coffee shop remained open, and Starbucks eventually won on appeal in 2009 after a planning inspector overruled the councils’ decision, in a move described by then Green Party ward councillor Rachel Fryer as a “slap in the face” for local campaigners. Mr Schultz claims the firm would now act differently, adding: “I would say universally if a community in the future didn’t want us to come in we would be respectful and thoughtful.” Jon Barrenechea, 34, who started the now defunct anti-Starbucks campaign, said he is no longer commenting on the St James Street Starbucks, but tweeted that Mr Schultz’s admission was “2 years too late.”
Memorial tree cut down ‘for no reason’ Georgia Axtell-Powell
A memorial tree on the fields behind the Institute of Development Studies on campus has been mysteriously cut down, causing speculation amongst staff and students. The chopped down tree, which is located behind a memorial bench dedicated to a former student, was first discovered on 9 May. Christine Gapper, Premises Assistant at the University of Sussex, said: “One day the tree was there and the next day it was gone; I walked by and noticed that it had been completely cut off at the bottom for no apparent reason.” A round patch of ash caused by a recent bonfire was found at the side of the memorial bench and in close
proximity to the tree, yet it is unclear whether the tree was removed in relation to the fire. Alan Stuart, a Sussex University student, said: “Starting a fire near a place of memorial shows outright disrespect for the person’s memory.” Geoffrey Ward, Acting Director of Health and Safety at the University of Sussex, said: “Bonfires, other than those carried out by grounds staff in controlled areas are not permitted on campus.” Alternatively, barbecues, another firm favourite in the summer months, are allowed as long as students check and get approval from the Estates and Facilities Management beforehand. Mrs Gapper added that if people wished to do this, they should remember to clean up after themselves.
Less fresh, more fulfilled? As this academic year draws to a close, one fresher asks his fellow students to recall the highlights from their hazy memories of what has been an eventful first year at Sussex Harry Yeates There is a reason why people constantly remind us that university is the best time of our lives. Needless to say it’s a sentiment that won’t resonate with everybody, however, it’s certainly one that will strike a chord with a good few happy campers. For when again shall we be exposed to such diversity of people, of experiences, of mind altering substances? It’s all here and whether we chose to explore it or not, it is here. We are effectively being paid to learn from some of the county’s, nay some of the world’s leading lecturers, and yes it’s money that we will have to pay back, providing we don’t live abroad for ten years or earn under £21,000 per annum that is, but for the time being, it’s ours. We have access to a three-storied library, 24 hours a day, five days a week, and are surrounded by friends, potential friends and seagulls. We produced the Mohawks ultimate Frisbee team, who are officially the best in the whole country and can boast a pole dancing and Buddhist meditation society, what’s more - and this isn’t necessarily unrelated - we recently polled 11th in the Guardian’s university league table. There are of course undoubtedly pressures that accompany being a student, namely the knowledge that how we ‘perform’ in the coming years has the potential to shape our futures. Yet never is this less true than in first year, which is spent constantly reassuring ourselves that we need only get the required 40% to progress to second year, where things start mattering. What this means of course, is that faced with a raging hangover on Monday morning, we can weigh the options, taking into account things like, severity of head ache and importance of lecture and other such variables. It’s a luxury that we know won’t present such conclusive answers in years two and three and so routinely opt for the choice that has the rest of society bemoaning our very existence. The choice that has MPs and parents alike questioning our worth as freethinking individuals, and the rigours of an academic system that permits such laziness. But then perhaps our nonattendance is the ultimate form of protest and it doesn’t require marching, or a police presence, just good, wholesome sleep. It has certainly been an interesting year to be a student, and in many ways a turbulent one. Of course we are all familiar with scenes of student protesting, be it as a result of participating in marches or watching from afar. Ultimately though, however outraged, however indignant, we have returned to the bubble that is Sussex and university life. On other occasions we need consider how to utilise our influence as students for good, but on this occasion I ask how life as a student has been good to us, looking into the
East Slope, where university life kicks off for many Sussex students. Photo: University of Sussex bubble and asking first-years for their fondest memories. Man about campus Mr. Jackomnipresent-Clemence probably has more highlights than most, by sheer virtue of the fact that he doesn’t sleep and knows pretty much everybody, (my assertion not his). Of course most of his highs aren’t publishable, but I caught up with him, which really wasn’t too hard given that he’s in the room next door to me and was moving pretty slowly, having spent the weekend at a festival called ‘bang face’. Anyway, he had this to say: “Highlights of my first year, wow that’s a hard one. I think the whole thing has been a bit of a highlight except essay crises and hangovers. But I’ve really enjoyed meeting so many amazing, like-minded people and drunkenly ranting about politics, dancing on tables and windowsills and making music by the campfire. I had no idea what to expect coming here, but this year has been everything I hoped for and more.” Among those making it so special will have been fellow West Country cider drinker, Ian Llewellyn, who will almost certainly have been central to, or at least extreme left of the drunken rants about politics, to which Jack refers. Flying the flag for the SWP (Socialist Workers Party), you will already know Ian, if for no other reason than for being the boy in the red cap who tirelessly tries to sell you the Socialist Worker newspaper as you pass through Library Square. A piece of advice - do not, as I recently did, open with the line: ‘how’s business?’ For the SWP is not about business but principled politics. Indeed, having promised to stay firmly rooted within the bubble, some people cannot help but transcend it and Ian is one such person. His highlight of the year reflects as much.
“It would have to be being a part of the 10 November student protest, as it illustrated how far we’ve come”, he said. “It used to be the case that people of our age would sit at home playing Xbox, but now they are taking to the streets and getting behind something they really believe in. It proved how powerful we as students really are.” Although, despite drawing on the Xbox analogy, I can reveal to the Badger that Ian is a very competent Tekken player, operating at a level that must have required many hours of practice.
exclusively for Dave), thought provoking conversation, and ‘Mexican minute’, a whole sixty seconds dedicated to all the wonderful music to come out of Mexico. I caught up with Aran and Dave, post-open mic night at Falmer Bar where, as ‘Diamond in the rough’, the pair entertained an appreciative audience, with their experimental acoustic sounds. Having initially planned on singing just the one song ‘Perversion Excursion’, two encores brought on ‘We dropped it’ and ‘Raining on My Window Pane’, with the trio of tunes
Everyone will have their first year stories and though the time for being sentimental is not for another two years, one rather suspects that never again will there be a year like your first at university I can also reveal that our next crazy characters, who just happen to be Ian’s flatmates, are less good at Tekken, but then they are lyrical geniuses. Listeners of URF (University Radio Falmer) will already be familiar with the work of Aran BruceCaddick, Phillip White and regular special guest David Mullen, who together form ‘Eargasm’, and the show that sprays “musical juices all over your cortex”. Airing every Wednesday between 5 and 6pm, the boys have developed something of a cult following, and is it any wonder? With guests (not to be confused with special guests, a title reserved
merely illustrating their extraordinary range. Some of the lyrics however, were well, challenging to say the least. ‘Perversion Excursion’ tells the tale of a trip Dave made to Brighton one day. There, he finds a girl who through a strange sequence of events reveals a ‘perfect pair of breasts’. Fastforward, to the song’s climax though, and it is revealed she is in fact a he. ‘We dropped it’, offers political satire, literally referring to the dropping of Osama Bin Laden in the ocean and has as its stand out line: ‘Osama Bin Laden, he’s not in my garden he’s not in my shed, he’s under my bed’. Powerful stuff then from Sussex’s worst kept secret. Diamond in the
muff, we salute you. Everyone will have their first year stories and though the time for being sentimental is not for another two years, one rather suspects that never again will there be a year like your first at university. Speaking to my flatmates, among their highs have been themed dinner parties, a psychology department outing to Amsterdam, living the East Slope way of life, i.e. an extremely unhealthy one, and a feminist seminar followed by a barbeque where stereotyped gender roles were adhered to as men lit the fire and women served the salad. As for myself, my highlights have included finding friendship and fine dining in East Slope’s ‘house of gourmet’; being reminded of all that is good by a beautiful, lichen loving country bumpkin; seeing Manchester United lift their nineteenth Premier League title (leaving my Liverpudlian pals to reminisce on their record that was); hustling unsuspecting pool players at East Slope bar; and coming to terms with the fact that I am, and always will be the biggest lightweight of anyone I know. I have also grown quite partial to dressing up as a mermaid, an Irish person, an Indian, a Mexican, a hippie and Hugh Hefner. But with half a mind on my pending application to be next year’s Badger Features Editor, my biggest highlight has to be polluting the Badger with my ramblings on drug abuse, protesting, political diversity and reviews of wonderful cultural happenings like S-Club 7’s re-union gig at Oceana. In the style of a pushy, profit driven website, I shall sign off for the year by saying: if you liked these articles, why not try page 13 and my review of Shantaram, and yes that was an example of shameless selfpromotion. Direct all complaints to the letters editor. Adios amigos... until next year!
Student Media Office Falmer House University of Sussex Brighton BN1 9QF
Views expressed in the Badger are not representative of the views of the USSU, the University of Sussex, or the Badger. Every effort has been made to contact the holders of copyright for any material used in this issue, and to ensure the accuracy of this week’s stories. Please contact the Communications Officer if you are aware of any omissions or errors.
letters and emails Library issues Dear Sir, I was incensed by a recent letter that overtly criticised the library staff and their supposed ‘Nazi’ like enforcement of their rules on eating and drinking within the library. What annoyed me most, was not necessarily the invalidity of their criticism, which as an opinion they are most entitled to, but the selfimportance and brash arrogance that accompanied their complaint. The writer belittled and patronised the staff, suggesting that their job was unimportant and that they were unworthy of our respect. This unnecessarily obnoxious attitude is precisely the reason why the tabloid media and general public often vilify students, considering us self-important know-it-alls, lacking a proper understanding of the real world. Equally sickening, was the mere suggestion that the writer in question’s work was so important that such abuse was justified, and that the idea of possibly taking a 5 minute break to have a coffee, away from their work, was ridiculous. Perhaps if said writer was so concerned about the importance of their work, they should spend less time abusing our friendly and helpful library staff, and more time writing their essay. I would also recommend that our protagonist research a little into European history and gain a little perspective. I personally have never seen library staff picking out students from a line up, choosing who shall die, and who shall stack shelves; hence they are by no means on par with Goebbels, Himmler et al. Of course, the defendant may have been attempting to imitate the ‘soup Nazi’ reference in Seinfeld, however they failed to provide us with the same level of humour as Messrs Jerry and Larry; perhaps the comedy, in this instance should be left to the professionals. My advice to the writer in question would be to drop the attitude, repent your inconsiderate ways and concentrate on your work. (or just sneak refreshments in, its not that difficult). The Library staff, I’m sure, have plenty to deal with and have done so commendably throughout the inconvenience of the renovation period, without having to deal with self-important, obnoxious students such as yourself. I hope that one day your career
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path leads you to a university library desk and perhaps you may regret your remarks. How sweet the retribution would be. Sincerely, Library Staff Sympathiser Dear Sir/Madam, I work in the Library and think the students have been fantastic during what has been a really difficult period of refurbishment. In fact in my 16 years of working here I could count the rude students on one hand; they are mainly really friendly and polite. In the past I have always admired the stance of Sussex students and have often found myself nodding my head in agreement with many of the articles and letters in the Badger. But the anonymous abuse of decent hard working members of staff in the letters page - that your editorial team decided to not only print but to highlight in a sound bite - has certainly changed my opinion of the Badger. To use the term Nazis to describe the workers in the Library is disgusting and deeply offensive not only to the workers involved but to the memory of the millions of innocent people who were systematically murdered by the Nazis. I’m really saddened that your editorial team deemed this letter acceptable to print. In the past the editorial team and contributors to the Badger have aspired to something more than the gutter journalism of the Sun and its ilk – it would seem standards have dropped. Manus Doherty Library Assistant
May). After tripping over an incredibly poorly constructed first paragraph, I found the piece riddled with basic grammatical errors. I wonder if this is symbolic of the decline in literacy skills in British society, or just editorial slackness? At any rate, it is especially worrying to see in the newspaper of an institution of learning. Matthew S. Dent
Tuition fee debate Dear Sir/Madam, FAO Katie O’Shea: Presumably the reason there was no article in the comment section applauding the increased fees at Sussex is because nobody deigned to write one. And quite right too. Is it really surprising that the arguments for and against increased fees are not equally addressed by the demographic who are being adversely affected by them?Your comment that “it would be interesting to hear the other side of the argument for a change” is equally ridiculous. Every day we hear ‘the other side’ of the argument in the media and from the government, institutions far larger and more powerful than a student newspaper. Similarly, over £2.5 million was spent on the No to AV campaign, the tactics of which have been highly criticised. We do not have an obligation to bolster government campaigns for the sake of unbiased news coverage. You say yourself that Sussex is a predominantly ‘liberal’ university, why then shouldn’t this be reflected in The Badger? Kirsty Murdoch
Badger writing Dear Sir/Madam, Is it just me, or has the standard of writing in the Badger gone rather steeply downhill of late? I don’t mean the standard of the reporting, but rather the level of literacy displayed in some of the articles. In my first year, I used to read the Badger and find perhaps one or two errors per issue. Unfortunately nowadays it has gotten much worse. Take, for example, the article “The Sussex Library Experience”(9
Student support Dear Sir/Madam, It is very unfortunate that the Badger has published an article (“Student with depression felt ‘distressed’ by support team”, 16.05.11) which contains serious and unfounded accusations of discrimination and bad practice by the Student Support Unit and one of its staff. While I cannot comment on individual cases, I would like to respond to the article’s description of a meeting
with the Mental Health Advisor. All meetings with Student Support Unit Advisors take place in a private setting. Advisors often read back forms with students to check the information they have provided. The form referred to in the article contains no details of the student’s condition and states very clearly, in large font immediately above the first section that the student fills in, that: ‘Information you provide will only be shared with other University Staff with your consent. The exception to this is where there is concern for your health and safety or the safety of other people.’ Students taking vocational courses with placements, such as Social Work, are aware that they have to meet additional requirements for their courses, as they work with potentially vulnerable people in the community to whom we have a responsibility. It is very misleading to imply, as the article did, that advice to disclose support needs is equivalent to saying that someone is unsuitable for a course. Disclosure of a disability to the Student Support Unit is not related to admission to a course and all disabled students are encouraged to disclose in order for them to receive the support to which they are entitled. On courses where there is a ‘fitness to practice’ requirement, this is carried out independently of the Student Support Unit and its processes. To reassure the hundreds of students who are registered with the Student Support Unit, I would like to make clear that we take the issue of confidentiality very seriously with all students and work to the University’s Code of Confidentiality, which is available at: www.sussex.ac.uk/ equalities/documents/codeofconfidentiality.doc In the 11 years of its existence, the Student Support Unit has never breached the University’s Code of Confidentiality. Staff in the Student Support Unit are always happy to meet with students to discuss these issues if they have any concerns. We also operate within the University’s complaints procedure, which was not followed in the instance covered in the Badger article, and have always sought and welcomed student feedback on our services.
Brenda Giddey, Manager, Student Support Unit
Dear Sir/Madam, This letter is in response to that of James Butcher’s in last week’s Badger. I agree with Mr Butcher that it would appear that we could well be returning to a more tribal two party political system. I would like to add to his observations with a few of my own with regards to the local picture. First of all, I believe that despite the crushing defeat of AV, reform of the voting system must continue to be on the political agenda. In the recent Brighton and Hove city council elections for instance, the Greens won 23 seats to Labour’s 13, despite receiving an almost equal share of the vote (33% and 32% respectively). Surely this proves that FPTP is not fit for purpose? Secondly, I would also like to congratulate the Greens on their victory. It will certainly be interesting to see what Britain’s first Green council will achieve. The Greens in Brighton have become the fashionable party to vote for in a liberal city which no longer finds the idea of another Labour or Conservative administration particularly appealing. However, with power comes responsibility and inevitably unpopularity. Coming back to the national scene it is clear that the biggest losers from the recent local elections were the Liberal Democrats. The Conservatives can be very content, making minimal losses to Labour (in fact overall a net gain was experienced due to the significant collapse of the Liberals) whilst the Labour party can also be somewhat content with their gains. After all, after 13 long years in power, they’ve only been out 12 months. Of course, quite clearly the public have not turned against the Conservatives and Labour hasn’t made significant inroads in some of the southern battlegrounds (vital if they are to return to government). Perhaps this will not change until the cuts start to hit home later this year.
Response to last week’s front page article Got an issue to raise? The Department of Social Work and Social Care have asked us to make clear that they were concerned they had not been given the opportunity to respond to the points made in last week’s article - ‘Student with depression felt ‘distressed’ by support team’, 16.05.2011 - when it was being written. They would like readers to know that given the nature
of the issues raised in the article, the department wish to give them full consideration. They want to make sure readers know that it is important to their staff team, current students and partner agencies that they do justice to this matter and provide a thought through and reasoned response which will be published in next week’s issue.
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SlutWalk: we’re taking ‘slut’ back Ruth Atkinson The SlutWalk, a planned demonstration that has swept the streets of first America and now the UK, has been subject to much debate over the last few weeks. Gathering crowds across the country, the movement is due to reach London and Brighton next month where it’s predicted to be very well received. The protests aim to a) raise awareness of a culture that blames women who wear provocative outfits for bringing sexual harassment and rape upon themselves and b) reclaim the word ‘slut’ and bring a positive slant to its wholly objectifying and degrading associations. The movement was instigated following a Toronto-based police officer’s comment that female rape victims are the guilty party in such cases because apparently by wearing revealing clothes they are luring men in. It is actually frighteningly widely thought that women are to blame for being attacked or abused and that if they wanted to avoid it they should cover up their bodies. Thus is must also be a frighteningly widely accepted notion that the male half of the population are unable - and should not have to - activate any form of selfcontrol when their lust is inspired by the sight of so called ‘sluts’. I find this quite a daunting prospect. Rape is about power and control, and women of all ages and wearing all varieties clothes have been attacked throughout history, so covering up would clearly not change things. The issue needs to be tackled and addressed from the roots without laying any form of blame whatsoever
on the clearly helpless victim: women have every right to wear what they want and should be able to do so without fear of being attacked. Any protests pushing this argument and highlighting the distressing flaws of the repressive and judgemental attitudes, as represented by the policeman in Toronto, is definitely a positive one standing for an excellent cause. Hopefully the protests will maintain their successful momentum and popularity so that could people’s values and judgements of women are at least reassessed, if not altered. The movement’s second aim is also a positive one, however it has been argued that the use and acceptance of the word ‘slut’ takes away from the real issue behind the movement. The word - a derogatory, judgemental, presumptious and degrading word to label a woman - holds so many negative connotations that by naming the protest the ‘SlutWalk’ the participants appear to be acting within a seemingly accepted sexist environment. If you really want people to realise and recognise that women are not just objects of social speculation and consumption, then why operate within a sexist system and maintain the use of the word? For the movement to reach maximum success and fully challenge this belief system then the support behind such terms needs to be wholly eradicated and the system rejected.By focusing on the real issue- to confront an unjustified blame culture, to alter the way society presents women and challenge the way they are viewed, to enable women complete control over their bodies without the threat of attack or the piercing judgements of
The slut walk in the United States last month provoked huge debate. Photo: peopleofcolormagazine.com others- would perhaps be more politically powerful under the rejection of this system of terminology. I find it hard to see how the word could be manipulated into something positive, asits connotations are so fair engrained within our language. I wouldn’t go as far as to say that participants are missing the point and wasting their time by attempting to reclaim the word - any publicity for such a good founding cause is better than none - but I do think by encouraging the use of such diction the success
and power behind the push is slightly undermined. Furthermore it must be considered why so called ‘sluts’ exist: another problem the movement might tackle and potentially raise awareness of. Due to pornographic images readily available and forced upon us in advertising (see ‘The Beauty Myth’ by Naomi Wolf) girls are exposed from a young age to false and negative representations of what is attractive and what men will pay attention to. This fetishisation of the woman’s body and female eroti-
cism has created an environment where there is great pressure to obtain certain looks and demands, making it acceptable and almost desired for men to look at women in such a way. That said, such issues can be raised at a later date and hopefully encourage future movements of a similar notion: for now the promotion of choice and the challenge to repressive beliefs is excellent, and I’ll be backing the protests to hopefully join the potentially liberating and largely positive march through Brighton.
Bring back Spitting Image Connor Bollins If there’s ever anything good that comes out of a Tory government then it’s the amount of material that they make available for satirists. Let’s face it, whatever your political allegiances, there’s no denying that the Conservatives always go down in popular memory as the ‘Nasty Party’. No, not the Nazi Party, the Nasty Party. In opposition, Cameron tried to reverse this image by hugging hoodies and rambling on about a Big Society but it’s generally testimony to the fact that your plans have gone tits-up, I’m afraid Dave, when people start burning your effigy in the streets. What’s more, coalition attempts to sell Britain’s forests and trees have just made it brutally ironic that the new Tory logo is… wait for it… a tree. Harold Macmillan’s Conservative government during the late 1950s and early 1960s fuelled comedians with fervour for Tory bashing that created the political satire we know and love today. Programmes like ‘Mock the Week’ and ‘Have I Got News For You’ owe it to the satirists of those years for laying the groundwork for questioning our leaders through comedy. The best bit about TV shows such as ‘That Was The Week That Was’, which first aired in 1962, was their ability to make politics easily accessible to the public, particularly for people who had never been interested in it before. Macmillan’s government was a cabal
consisting of toffs and landowners – sound familiar? The prime minister himself was married to the daughter of the ninth Duke of Devonshire and his cabinet was made up of his chums, mostly Old Etonians.Too conservative, with a little ‘c’ to sort out the country’s economic and social problems, Macmillan spent his premiership playing golf in the moors and pretending that the mess would sort itself out. One big issue of the time was mass immigration from the old colonies. Supermac didn’t have the balls to put an end to it or to speak in favour of it, which led to mob riots and chronic racism. Frustration with the elite running the country boiled over into strikes and industrial action.This was, after all, the age of the unions when membership was at its highest and Thatcher wasn’t around to castrate them. Yet it wasn’t the unions that managed to wake Macmillan up so that he could see that he was failing Britain. It was the satirists who managed this. A group of wits took to the stage of a West End theatre in 1960 and performed ‘Beyond the Fringe’ for the first time. Amongst them was Peter Cook, a satirical genius, who perfected the art of comical mimicry. His impersonation of Macmillan made the show a big hit. Her Majesty the Queen was most amused and roars of laughter are reported to have been heard from the Royal Box. Intrigued, Macmillan himself went to see the play. Unfortunately for him,
Cook instantly spotted him in the audience. Cook strayed from the script and, looking straight at the Prime Minister, he said in his Macmillan voice: “When I have a spare evening, there’s nothing I like to do more than to wander over to a theatre and sit there listening to a group of sappy, urgent, vibrant young satirists with a stupid great grin all over my silly old face.” Suffice to say, Supermac was not smiling. Never had a leader of Britain been so publically humiliated. A few scandals later and Macmillan resigned due to health reasons or in other words: the stress had got the better of him. The moral of the story is that satire is a great tool for people living in a democracy. Though funny, satire is biting and can be used to hold politicians to account. Comedians have it in their power to capture the public mood. Not only can they help politicise people they can fuel opposition to government policies. It is no coincidence that the ‘60s saw the rise of satire and are now remembered as a years of anti-establishment thinking, populated with rebellious youths. Satirists made it possible for people to fight the system. Although born two years after her backstabbing backbenchers booted Thatcher out of Downing Street, my favourite satirical TV show is ‘Spitting Image’. This famous puppet show, which began running during the ‘80s, left no cornerstone of British politics or culture untouched in its mission to take the mic of Thatcher’s Britain.
Is satire, such as that evident in the Macmillan inspired ‘Beyond the Fringe’, a useful tool for people living in a democracy? Photo: anselm.edu Mad Maggie was portrayed as a militant psycho who, when told she should follow the example of her wartime hero and not falter when times got tough, replies “Yes, but he shot himself in a Berlin bunker and even he wasn’t as low in the polls as I am.” After years in the political wilderness, the blundering Labour shadow cabinet were shown to be so desperate to get powerthat they would break into government buildings just to pretend that Neil Kinnock had won the election and make-believe being in office. The show is often remembered for its songs. One of its best was ‘Santa Claus is on the Dole’. This showed a redundant Father Christmas whose profit margin was destroyed when he couldn’t afford to give out free presents anymore. His magic sleigh was repossessed, his elves hung themselves and he sold his reindeers for glue. This
summed up many people’s Christmases considering the high unemployment of the time. Their ‘Chicken Song’, which parodied summer holiday disco songs, made it as the official number one in the UK singles chart for three weeks in 1986. Perhaps I’m wrong. Perhaps satire doesn’t have the power to help keep politicians in line. Perhaps it cannot motivate people to resist unpopular policies. But I’ll tell you what it can do whenever the Tories come into power and screw-up the country – it can cheer us up. Surprise, surprise: the latest generation of Tories seem dead-set on making our lives difficult. If we can’t convince them to change their minds on issues like trebling tuition fees then at least a few more shows like Channel 4’s new ‘10 O’clock Live’ will make it all a bit more bearable. Conclusion: bring back ‘Spitting Image’.
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Our Pride is not for sale, is yours? Kieran Burn and Kelly McBride University of Sussex LGBTQ We’re sure that you’re all by now aware that, for the first time in its history, Brighton & Hove Pride will be charging for entry this year into Preston Park. It has also come to light recently that Bristol Pride, just one year old, will be doing the equivalent. This pricing is symptomatic of what Pride is being turned into; that is to say, a commercial event, a festival, a party which betrays its very purpose. That’s not to say that Pride is not a celebration, and the associated expenses are invariably used to justify the imposition of ticket pricing. But to do so by reference to big tents and fancy acts is to miss the point entirely. Prides get expensive to host once you start turning them into festivals, which are by no means the only way in which we can celebrate our history. In fact, it is probably the worst way, because it takes the politics away from the heart of the event. The first Prides were commemorations of the Stonewall Riots, in which the trans and queer community of NewYork demanded liberation from their persecution. LGBT people have a lot more rights nowadays, but the battle is far from over. Until all LGBT people are liberated; until Prides can be celebrated across the globe without LGBT blood being spilt, Pride remains a protest. When people are kicked to death in this country because of their sexuality, how can Pride not be a protest? When homophobic hate crime is increasing, how can Pride not be a protest? When young LGBT people are at least three times more likely to commit suicide than their heterosexual counterparts, how can Pride not be a protest? When HIV services and LGBT charities are being cut, how can Pride not be a protest? When people around the world are still persecuted for being LGBT and as Uganda seeks to impose a death penalty, how can Pride not be a protest? And when LGBT students are still verbally and physically attacked because of their sexuality or gender identity on our campus in what is reputedly the ‘gay capital of Britain’, how can Pride not be a protest? But what is the relevance to any of this of a big festival necessitating entertainment acts, stages, fencing, tents and security guards? How could anyone possibly pretend that this stands alongside the proud history of the Stonewall Riots and subsequent struggles, without which we wouldn’t even be able to consider organising a Pride of any description? No-one is against people getting together to organise a festival for sections of the community to enjoy and this may indeed involve imposing ticketing prices. The problem is when people call such a party a ‘Pride’ event, thus hijacking this movement for LGBT liberation. Ourselves and others will resist all attempts to put a price on our liberation. The organisers of Bristol Pride are saying that this event is important for the community; that it will benefit its economy by ‘putting the city on the LGBT map’, but the only way to make possible what is essentially a gay-themed binge, with live entertainment from Kelis, is to charge for entry. Maybe they’re right. But a Pride which excludes a considerable
section of the LGBT community is no Pride worthy of the name. Ten quid might not seem a lot to many people. But Pride is meant to provide a safe space for all LGBT people to come together. It is deeply offensive to pretend that the diversity of the LGBT community can be celebrated at an event which only the privileged can attend. What about young people, the homeless and people on benefits? Although it seems that concessions are being made after student groups like Sussex LGBTQ placed pressure on Pride organisers, many LGBT people who have a right to attend the event are expected to slip through the net. Invariably, these will include young LGBT people estranged from homophobic parents: the very people who need a Pride event the most. Most of all, ‘Pride’ organisers need to realise that Pride is fundamentally a protest. We’re certain the lure ‘Pink Pound’ is persuasive, but they must accept that Pride is about defiance, hope and remembrance as well as celebration. And it is something we must stop them appropriating and corrupting into a branded product that they can sell back to us. They need to understand why we will resist all attempts to exploit and capitalise upon our battles by the mutation of Pride into something deformed; something that is a mechanism to further commercial aims. Politics needs to be at the heart of Pride, and the celebration must come from this; from remembering the martyrs of the LGBT movement, from commemorating our history and from coming together as a community to fight for the many battles we have not yet won. Yet this soul is being ripped from it. A Pride event should combine demonstration with celebration; the latter should not become eclipsed by festivals and big, expensive acts like Kelis – none of which are remotely necessary to celebrate being proud to be LGBT – in the same way that poli-
Pride is a protest, not just a celebration Photo: BBC However, a number of reasons for the introduction of these charges were provided, including the need to ensure that ‘everyone contributes to the cost of putting it on’; ‘to make it safer and more enjoyable for everyone’ [who can afford to attend]; and to ‘support Pride’s fundraising for local groups’ – despite the fact that not a penny of the ticket revenue will be going to the community, as confirmed by Pride’s ‘Fundraising and Communications Manager’ Judith Manson. This announcement provoked a backlash from the local community
Organisers need to realise Pride is fundamentally a protest ticking should not completely detract from the enjoyment of the event. For example, one of the first Pride marches culminated in a picnic in Hyde Park. Today, celebration might involve partying, but the problem is that you need to pay to party whereas you do not need to pay to exercise your democratic right to protest – which is exactly why a good Pride event contains a healthy balance. Thus it is clearly in the interests of Brighton & Hove Pride’s organisers – who recently announced that they would be charging from £8.50 to £17.50 on the day for tickets to this year’s event in Preston Park – to keep politics at bay, maintaining Pride’s commerciality which entitles them to charge fees and make a profit from the event.
and student groups, and resulted in Pride losing the support of the organisers of the long-term, successful Calabash and Women’s tents which have voluntarily contributed enormously to Pride over the last ten years. The latter is to be replaced with the organisers of the UK’s biggest (and commercial) Women’s festival, ‘GoGo’. That’s hardly community spirit – and neither was the ‘community’ stage introduced last year, the production of which the ‘community’ seemingly had no part in. As though this wasn’t enough, organisers have also shamelessly announced that they will be doubling the size of the dance tent this year and that attendees would not be allowed to bring their own alcohol onto the park, instead having to pur-
chase drinks from the internal bars, with ‘random bag searches’ in operation to foil rogue bottle-smugglers.To whit: it displays all the hallmarks of a profit-driven enterprise. But it’s not just the park event the community are expected to pay for – it’s also entry into the march, an integral part of any Pride event and one which Brighton & Hove Pride have monopolised as an organisation. The political focus has been overshadowed in recent years by the presence of commercial organisations that have realised an invaluable marketing opportunity to plug their product (i.e., Nando’s, who often use several scantily-clad heterosexual models). In February 1971 the Sussex Gay Liberation Front was established in what is now the Dhaba Cafe, and in July 1973, students from the ‘Sussex University Gay Soc’ worked alongside the community to organise the first ever Pride march in Brighton. They did not have to pay costs upwards of £45 to enter a group to walk proudly down their own streets in their own city to celebrate the achievements of the LGBT movement, call for their liberation or highlight the struggles of LGBT people around the world, as students from Sussex are today. It is an absolute travesty that costs are being imposed on LGBT people wishing to participate in a Pride march. And when far-right organisations with links to hate crime such as the BNP and EDL are able to march freely through our streets with police protection, some serious questions really do need to be asked. Particularly when various community groups who work tirelessly through the year to support LGBT people in this city can’t afford to enter, as highlighted by the exclusion of youth groups at last year’s march. But what else is deeply worrying is the Pride organisers’ stipulation in
this year’s parade entry application that entrants cannot protest against any aspect of Brighton & Hove Pride’s work; i.e., against the entry charge. This shocking attempt at censorship further highlights a desire to eradicate political expression from the event. Brighton & Hove City Council, who grant consent for use of Preston Park and who last year bailed out a failing Pride with a £20,000 loan, have also recently announced that they will again be offering small grants to community groups who host an event inside the ticketed Preston Park, and they have yet to mention any support for community groups who hope to hold events independently. Sussex LGBTQ are deeply concerned about the potential impact of this lack of inclusion and transparency and the appalling commercialisation of this year’s Pride event on the LGBT people, as well as on the community as a whole. In response, we are working alongside a number of community groups to create an alternative to the Preston Park event. ‘Brighton & Hove Community Pride’ is looking to establish a programme of free community-led events which are inclusive, political, fundraise directly for local LGBT organisations and are, most importantly: free.They welcome inclusion into the programme any event supportive of these aims. Pride and liberation have no price and to suggest that they do undermines and insults the struggles we’ve overcome and the challenges we face. We hope that you will join Sussex LGBTQ and the local LGBT community in supporting ‘Brighton & Hove Community Pride’, ensuring the weekend is a success for everyone in the community, and in sending a message to the organisers of the Preston Park event, commercial hijackers of Pride and Brighton & Hove City Council, that ‘Our Pride is Not For Sale’.
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Students’ Union Referendum Students’ Union Release
“Should the University of Sussex Students’ Union boycott Israeli goods?” The referendum to decide this will take place online and across campus in the week beginning 6 June. Next week’s issue of the Badger will include arguments for and against which must be submitted by emailing returning@ussu. sussex.ac.uk. Arguments can be up to 400 words and the names of a ‘proposer’ and ‘seconder’ must be
included (these must be two verifiable names of students currently at the University). Any student wishing to campaign must submit their 400 words and campaign materials by 5:00pm, Thursday 26 May. The two opposing arguments from the campaign teams are published to help students make up their mind on the issue. All students will be able to vote in the referendum at www.sussexstudent,com/elections A referendum is a single, closed (yes or no) question asked to all
Union members by cross-campus ballot. Policy passed by referendum
Should the University of Sussex Students’ Union boycott Israeli goods? enjoys the same status as policy passed by a General Meeting, and
therefore remains valid for three years, before returning to General Meeting so the membership can decide whether to, update, change or allow the policy to stop. Any student can call for a referendum by collecting 150 signatures from full members of the Union, and handing them in to a FullTime Officer. The exact wording of any proposed referendum question may be altered to ensure that it is fair. Referenda can be called by Union Council or by a General Meeting. Referenda are arguably the most
democratic way possible for the Union to make a decision, as they give all Union members the chance to get directly involved, by having a say on the issue at hand. Referenda have often been called by Union Council or General Meeting, when the members present have felt the issue at hand to be too big to be decided on by the proportion of Union members present - taking such an issue to referendum gives every student the opportunity to vote, and to help shape the future direction of the Union.
Park Village win carbon Books wanted for the Big Book reduction competition Share on the Big Lemon Tom Druitt Big Lemon Founder The borrowing website Bid & Borrow have teamed up with The Big Lemon to launch The Big Book Share. The aim of The Big Book Share is to get people sharing and reading all those wonderful books out there currently gathering dust on the bottom shelf! How it works: To borrow a book, just pick one out of the Book Share Box on the bus, fill in your name and location on the book share sticker inside the book.
Student doing their bit by switching off Photo: Nicky Santoyo Danni Pafford Student Switchoff The Student Switch Off is en energy saving competition running between residences, and a national not-forprofit campaign. Nearly ten percent of students in the University of Sussex residences signed up to the campaign – all pledging to save energy in halls, and get their mates to as well. We’re pleased to announce that Park Village is the Student Switchoff Winner 2010/11. Congratulations all Park Village residents – you made a 9% saving and saved 27 tonnes of CO2 single-handedly.
That’s some really significant savings, and shows just how much difference the little actions can make when added together. The type of energy saving actions students have been working on are the real basics – switching lights off, switching off appliances at the plug, not overfilling the kettle, putting lids on pans (saves 90% of the energy) and putting on more layers not the heating. As part of a national campaign with 37 Universities and nearly 16,000 students involved the energy savings really add up. So far over 1, 200 tonnes of CO2 have been taken off Universities carbon footprints (28,000 return
Park Village residents made a 9% saving and saved 27 tonnes of CO2 To celebrate your efforts the University will be throwing a special party in June for all residents.The campaign has been a real success, and we hope you all keep up the good work. Over three months energy consumption reduced by seven percent. This prevented 55 tonnes of CO2 from entering the atmosphere and is equivalent to the energy needed to: • Power an energy saving light bulb for 775 years •
Make 3,200,000 cups of tea
Fly from London to Manchester 1,222 times
flights London to Manchester). At a time when Higher Education funding is being directly linked to carbon reduction, this is a significant progression. To help encourage others to take up energy saving actions the campaign runs regular photo competitions – post a photo to the Facebook group ‘University of Sussex Student Switch Off’ of you doing an energy saving action and get a prize! We’ve given away NUS Extra cards,Water powered clocks, LUSH goodies, t-shirts, club tickets and more to students through the year. Our sponsors Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream are providing some extra special prizes for the final competition this weekend.
(If the book doesn’t already have a book share sticker in it, grab one from the box and stick it inside the front cover). It’s interesting to know who has read the book and where they read it! Enjoy the book then, when you’re finished with it, pass it on to someone else to read or drop it back in the Book Share Box. The scheme has been so popular since its launch two weeks ago that The Big Lemon has almost run out of books and needs more books! The Big Lemon’s Operation’s Manager, Alexis Parkin said, “It’s fantastic that people’s unwanted books have been in such high demand on
the buses. This cuts down on waste as less new books are needed, and provides an affordable way for people to get hold of interesting reading material.” So next time you hop on The Big Lemon remember to bring your unwanted books to share with others. Then settle down for a good read of a newly discovered book for your journey. Bid & Borrow want to know whether your book travels to Hanover or Hungary and will be looking for interesting stories to report on! So please keep them up to date at info@ bidandborrow.com.
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The results from the week’s awards and elections Elections
Campaigns & representation awards
Part-Time Officers have a vote on the Union’s Operations Committee and Union Council and also have specific responsibilities for the Union’s activities.
Council represents the views & interests of students within their School of study to Union Council which meets twice a term to hold Full-Time Officers to account and set Union activity.
Award for Social Change Student Parents’ Association Best campaign Students Against Sexual Harassment Environmental Innovation Green Week 2011 Outstanding contribution to Student Representation Richard Crawley Christopher Jones Ellie Tubman Martha Baker
Ethical & Environmental Officer Bobby Treweek Media Development Officer Alex Anpilogov Community Engagement Officer Tom Bucher Ethical & Environmental Reps Ethical & Environmental Reps are members of the Ethical & Environmental Committee, working closely with the Ethical & Environmental Officer and Operations Officer to make ethical and environmental improvements in the Union and the University. Liv James Katie Leach Ellen Segalov Tom Chadwick
Law, Politics & Sociology Ian Llewellyn Informatics Bobby Harkess Life Sciences Reopen nominations Engineering & Design Ashwin Persaud Psychology Scarlett Storr Media, Film & Music Paul Malget Business, Management & Economics Sarah Clavel English Lucy Freedman Global Studies Catarina Carvalho History, Art History & Philosophy Nad Williams
Media awards Best story Kieran Burn & Joe Jamieson Innovation in Student Media UniTV Best Student Media Editor Olivia Wilson Society awards Society Event of the year Trade Justice/ Swing Society Tea Dance Best New Society
Scoop Most Improved Society Arts Society Outstanding Achievement Awards Duncan Drury Alex Anpilogov Nadia Weigh Claire Harrison Society Personality of the Year Bobby Treweek
Ali Monteath Sportsman of the Year Richard Lynch Sportswoman of the Year Grainne Le Fevre Volunteering awards Volunteering England Gold Awards Lulu Awori Isobel Barrett Community Volunteering Certificate of Excellence Abigail Stebbing Becky Hutchins Daisy Ball Fenella Prior Louisa Talhi Link-Up Award Ben Carter Richard Lynch Steven Clark Outstanding Achievement Award Union Computers Team Union Volunteers of The Year James Ferguson Carly Pepper Lucy Atkinson Vincenzo Volpe
Sports awards Sport Awards Ben Carter Konrad Molitar Charles Lecossois Craig Lang Bex Yates BUCS Team of the Year Ultimate Frisbee Most Improved Club Women’s Cricket Club of the Year Fencing Full Blue Award Rose Thomas Ashley Yeo Lena Erdil Nick White
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The main event
The Badger takes a closer look at the best of the festivals this summer
ON THE BIG SCREEN ON THE SMALL SCREEN FOOD FOR THOUGHT Page 14
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Sonisphere Festival. Photo: fusedmagazine.com Lucy Meek Itching to get a festival ticket but not sure where to choose? Read on for a selection of the best of this summer’s festivals, both local and further afield.
with flights included! Visit www2. seetickets.com/sonisphere and enter the Brighton-specific code SF83S to be entered into the no-catch draw.
Meadowlands Festival 27-29 May Set in the grounds of a stunningly beautiful Elizabethan manor house in the middle of the South Downs, Meadowlands brings you three days of music spanning a wide range of genres. Sixty bands and DJs on three stages come together to create an “eclectic and fascinating” sound. Headliners include Turin Brakes, Penguin Café, Hot Club de Paris, Aim and Foy Vance, as well as local talent Two Spot Gobi. Tickets are £80 from meadowlandsfestival.com.
Secret Garden Party 21-24 July Marketed more as a “temporary community” than a festival, Secret Garden Party is all about fantasy, creativity and meeting new people. As the website says, “to truly understand Secret Garden you must walk through the gates as if Monday was never destined to arrive and everyone you are about to meet will be the love of your life”. The music won’t fail to disappoint either: Leftfield, The Mystery Jets and Blondie are amongst those set to perform this year, across four days and an incredible fifteen stages. Tickets are still available from secretgardenparty.com for £155+bf.
Sonisphere Festival 8-10 July Calling all metalheads! Sonisphere is back, with another incredible line-up. For the first time ever in the UK, all of the big four – Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth and Anthrax – are brought together to headline the festival in Knebworth, near London. What’s more, when buying your ticket through seetickets you’re in with a chance to win the “ultimate Sonisphere package”: VIP ticket upgrades, guest bar passes, backstage tours, Sonisphere goodies and a pair of tickets to Sonisphere Poland
Playgroup Festival 5 -7 August Bringing “three days of beautiful mayhem” to Eridge Green – a small village halfway between Brighton and London - Playgroup Festival includes all the pros of a bigger festival with none of the cons! Restricted to just 2,000 guests and incorporating elements from Secret Garden Party, Shambala, Burning Man and Bestival, Playgroup creates the same magical, creative atmosphere, but without the huge toilet queues and ridiculous walk back to your tent. With possibly the most diverse
music selection of any festival of its size, Playgroup offers a “tapas menu” of high-quality musicians and DJs, many of them home-grown. Expect to hear anything from folk to funk, ska to samba, gypsy swing to glitch-hop! Tickets are selling fast; available for £77+bf from playgroupfestival.com. Boomtown Fair 11-14 August In a beautiful secret location near Southampton, Boomtown is like no other festival… because it’s set up to look like an actual town! Second-tonone in terms of décor, impressive wooden structures painted to look like houses fit together to form streets, behind which you can find stages, workshops and many other weird and wonderful things. The festival becomes truly spectacular at night; a wander through its winding paths throw up surreal sculptures (some of them moving!), street performers, light shows and a variety of other weird and beautiful things. Reggae, ska and roots fans will find the line-up particularly appealing, with Gogol Bordello, Barrington Levy, Capleton and Caravan Palace headlining, but a wide mix of sounds ensures that even the most obscure tastes will be catered for. To see the rest of the line-up and purchase tickets (£93) see boowntownfair.co.uk. Shakedown Festival 17 September Just a stone’s throw away from the
Sussex campus in Stanmer Park, Shakedown is a one-day event with a huge line-up: Razorlight, Example, 2 Many DJs, Zane Lowe, Kissy Sell Out… the list goes on. And if ten hours of live music isn’t enough for you, some of Brighton’s biggest clubs are organising massive afterparties. Earlybird tickets are still available for £35+bf, or VIP tickets including fast-track entrance, a private bar and private toilet area for £40 extra. See shakedown.co.uk for more information. Bestival 8-11 September Well-known for its fancy dress tradition, this September Bestival will be transforming Robin Hill with a population of rock stars, pop stars and divas. The festival’s fun, easy-going atmosphere attracted a whopping 55,000 people last year, cementing its reputation as one of the UK’s most popular festivals. This year the music has taken a distinctly electronic turn, with the likes of Pendulm, Magnetic Man, Skream + Benga, DJ Shadow and Katy B on the list, but as always there is a healthy mix of pop, rock, reggae and cheese, amongst others, with The Cure, Primal Scream, The Maccabees, Fatboy Slim, Noah and the Whale, Toots and the Maytals and even the Village People performing. Tickets are priced at £160 for students (£170 otherwise) +bf, payable either up-front or by payment plan. See bestival.net for details.
The Badger reviews the art of Duncan Grant and Vanessa Bell 1905-1925
Duncan Grant: ‘Bathing’ 1911 Photo: visitbrighton.blogspot.com Samuel B F Taylor Radical Bloomsbury Until 9 October Brighton Musuem and Art Gallery ‘Radical Bloomsbury’ may seem like a slightly paradoxical phrase if you’ve not been acquainted with Duncan Grant and Vanessa Bell’s work in the past, but make no mistake - this retrospective exhibition provides more than enough material of the two Bloomsbury spearheads’ progression over the first decades of the 20th century to prove otherwise, housing numerous pieces that showcase an obvious revelry for the likes of Gauguin, Cezanne and Picasso, whilst also filling in some of the blanks for Henry Moore and his contemporaries. The opening blurb works hard to justify its ‘radical’ moniker from the
get-go – although the two artists are born and bred from the social elite of the British Empire, this affords them an unprecedented view of a social strata few at the time could aspire to; Bell’s mother was the muse of many a Pre-Raphaelite painter, whilst Grant spent his childhood soaking in the sights and sounds of India and North Africa. Throw the pair’s experiencing the kinetic modernismlike Ballet Russes’ visit to London into the mix, and you’ve got a rich array of inspiration to work from, all of which is acknowledged and on display here. Radical Bloomsbury takes a chronological approach to both artists’ work, and as is usually the case with collections housing obvious stylistic progression, some of the paintings seem to be missing a certain sense of identity or finesse. However, for a retrospective, it is
varied enough, and contains enough experimentation and quality material from the two to justify the £6.00 entry fee - Grant’s mammoth ‘Bathing’ is worth admission alone, substituting the naturalist vision of a bustling ocean for graduating static tiers of colour. It’s reminiscent of Herculean imagery and Byzantium mosaic, and Grant’s passion is conveyed with aplomb here. Experimentations with other mediums are displayed, with both Bell and Grant’s screen-door paintings being my particular highlights; Bell’s ‘Maud (Furnishing Fabric)’ is similarly an experiment that paid off. Progressing into the final room, there seems to be a regression of sorts, as the Bloomsbury group stray away from modernism to a sort of retrofitted view of classicism in painting – as is the case with most 20th century exhibitions, it’s clear to see that World
War II hung heavy on the minds of Grant and Bell, and instead of direct commentary on the conflict, many of the male members proudly stood as conscientious objectors. We see a celebration of British domesticism, as Charleston House is transformed into an artistic hub for the titular two and their friends, and it’s here that their close friendship is made clear to the spectator – Charleston seems to be where all the exhibition’s strands intertwine. That Charleston is only fourteen miles from Brighton gives the exhibition a tremendous sense of place – I myself, not really being aware of the Bloomsbury group before I visited was left feeling like I had been let in on valuable secret stash of innovation and great art... and if that’s not the sign of a good art exhibition, then I don’t know what is.
Shantaram, recounts Roberts own personal story, who in the early 80s as an armed robber and heroin addict, escaped from an Australian prison to India, where he lived in a Bombay slum. There he established a free health clinic and also joined the mafia, working as a money launderer, forger and street soldier. He learnt Hindi and Marathi, fell in love and spent time being worked over in an Indian jail. He fought with the Mujahedeen in Afghanistan and acted in a Bollywood movie. Yet perhaps more miraculous still is the fact that he wrote Shantaram three times after prison guards destroyed the first two versions...
Yes, Roberts’ story truly is an amazing one and will appeal to fans of all guns blazing action and hopeless romantics alike, though not necessarily at the same time. While not suggesting that throughout the book the authors writing is anything less than inspired, there are occasions when you wish our courageous protagonist would assign himself an identity. Is he for example a no-nonsense muscle man, whose animalistic instincts court danger and the notoriety afforded to him by Bombay’s mafia? Or is he a shrinking violet, whose hard-knock life has left the kind of internal scaring that only a woman’s love can heal? Granted
there are times when the reader is thankful for the juxtaposition. From a critical point of view I suppose it helps to give the character what you might call depth. But he doesn’t half go on sometimes. Karla this and Karla that, (Karla, being the woman whose love helps him blossom or something...) There are times, it’s true, when one is tempted to tell Roberts to ‘man up’, but there are more times when you want to commend him on writing such an incredible story, and by extension living such an awe-inspiring life. Shantaram may be slightly overindulgent in parts, but is a fantastic read nevertheless.
Readers inc. Harry Yeates Arts editor Having originally hit British bookshelves in 2004, I dare say the reading enthusiasts among you will already be familiar with Gregory David Roberts, Shantaram.However, a glance at the book’s cover will tell you why this reviewer feels quite justified in singing its praises, some seven years after its initial publication. According to the Daily Telegraph it’s ‘A literary masterpiece’, to The Sunday Times ‘a publishing phenomenon’ and to The Badger an achievement that requires but a single word to describe its 933 pages: epic.
University apparel Samantha Graham Arts editor From the guys who brought us the TV show ‘Modern Toss’, an exhibition is currently being held at Ink_d Gallery in Brighton, cleverly labelled, ‘Modern Cloth’. As part of the Brighton Fringe Festival, and due to popular demand, Modern Toss is returning for a groundbreaking new show of innovative ‘clothworks’, promising some challenging tea towel designs and a selection of limited edition prints. Never before has a garment been graced with the popular activity of swearing, until now. The ‘Modern Toss’ artists have collaborated with contemporary designer-tailor, Gresham Blake, to produce the bespoke ‘Swearing Jacket’. It features precision-selected abuse based on their sell-out print of the ‘Periodic Table of Swearing’. ‘Modern Cloth’ opened to coincide with the Royal Wedding, and to mark the occasion they are launching an obligatory collection of Royal nicknacks,comprising celebratory stamps, a whimsical take on the memorial mug, and a commemorative royal tea towel – so you can forever treasure the memory of the young Windsor’s wedding through the medium of cloth. The scandalous cult comic,Modern Toss, is the work of Jon Link and Mick Bunnage. The early editions are now very collectible, especially the second issue which had what was alleged to be ‘free royal hair’ stuck on the cover. The writers, cartoonists and animators have taken Modern Toss in many different directions, including a brazen late night television show, which was a mix of blunt-talking, animated characters with bizarre and surreal live action.They have had two previous exhibitions at the Ink_d Gallery, and last summer presented a musical evening of their animation to celebrate Brighton Arts festival. A trimmed down version was taken to the Latitude festival. A celebration of their artwork took place in London's Maverick Gallery in June 2010, where their startlingly innovative 'Periodic Table of Swearing' print became an international phenomenon and was tweeted globally. Modern Toss’ cartoons are small and simple, making them ideal for weekly appearances in the Guardian and on greetings cards. As the name suggests, cloth is the means of choice this time, an interesting change from the prints, cards and booklets for which they are known. Bad language is the staple of Modern Toss, and expect no less at their latest exhibit of all things witty and British. The exhibition runs until the 29th May, and is open Monday to Saturday 10am - 6pm. Sundays 12 pm – 4pm.
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On the big screen
Laurence Owen Hanna Joe Wright Europe, 111 mins, 12A, 2011 Joe Wright’s Hanna is a US-UKGerman production and never has this melting pot been more apparent. You can expect American action sequences across derelict theme parks, English characterdriven drama of personal discovery, and stark German cinematography accompanied by an abusive electronic soundtrack courtesy of The Chemical Brothers. As much as these are generalisations, the film has a pleasingly multicultural feel. Its representations of Finland, Morocco and Spain are exaggerated and surreal, while the climax paints
an extremely bleak and unforgiving picture of Berlin. I would shy away from suggesting that its style completely overrides its substance, but most of Hanna’s appeal comes from feel rather than solid narrative. Saoirse Ronan stars as the titular Hanna, a young girl raised in the Finnish wilderness by her father (Eric Bana) as the perfect assassin. Having grown up isolated from society and technology, she is brilliant but unprepared for the real world, which she must face after her father sends her on an important mission. As she journeys across Europe, Hanna is hunted by a shady CIA agent (Cate Blanchett), before finally learning the truth about who and what she is. The characters vary in interest and are not consistently believable. For much of the film, Hanna travels in a camper van with a supremely well-
observed middle-class English family, complete with the pseudo-intellectual dad, the vacantly spiritual mum, the spoiled public school daughter and her quietly eccentric younger brother. They could easily be from one of the nicer parts of Brighton and would definitely be among those who voted Green. Meanwhile, Blanchett’s neurotic villain is undeveloped and twodimensional, while her camp henchman (Tom Hollander) and his squad of homoerotic skinheads are as ridiculous as the caricatures found in Roger Moore’s Bond films. Bana is excellent in his role, once again proving his versatility – this time in a very convincing German accent – while Ronan is suitably weird and detached, making her an unlikely, intriguing action hero. The end result of this mishmash
of styles and nationalities is generally successful. I’m not sure the film is as complex or subversive as it might like to believe, despite some bizarre throwaway imagery in true David Lynch fashion – a midget in angel wings, a man in a wheelchair inexplicably wailing in a high falsetto, and so on. This is a dignified but reasonably conventional thriller with a backdrop of pretty locations, a collection of mixed social metaphors and a plot that is powered by the notion that bad men are coming to get you, which ends with a not-entirely-unpredictable twist. As thrillers go, it is tasteful and stylish, and certainly worth a look if only for one of the coolest title screens you’ll ever experience. It’s just a bit of a shame that the bar is set so high in the first few minutes.
of this show derives from the subtle humour and awkwardness of the more authentic characters. The childlike and comical relationship between naïve and hapless accountant Jason and accommodations officer Nicole, is a highlight, whilst the eager postgrad/sportsman Flatpack provides an endearing contrast to the caricature that is Matt Beer (geddit), both seeking the affection of the Maths geek, Imogen Moffat. The womanizer, Matt Beer, is a particular treat to watch, portrayed brilliantly by Joseph Millson. He has delighted me, and fellow English Literature students, with lines like “If you want to get laid do English, if you want your genitals to wither away do Science.”
However, plot gaps are poorly filled, such as the arrival of Canadian George Bryan, a cold and rather dull character who has been brought in to resolve the University’s financial problems and the aggressive two-dimensional mechanics teacher Lydia. Green Wing fans may well be disappointed with its successor, it set a high bar for great British comedy, but Kirke University is warming up, providing a backdrop for outrageous characters and some genuinely funny writing. Save for the gem that is Inbetweeners, Campus provides refreshing drink of surrealist wit in a veritable TV drought. Just as Jonty De Wolfe said of Kirke University, Campus “gleams like a bleached anus in a line-up of dirty arses.”
On the small screen
Some of the Campus cast Photo: channel4.com Georgia Murray Campus Tuesdays 10pm Channel 4 The pilot episode of Campus seemed a little too animated and familiar in format to its writer’s previous works, Green Wing and Smack the Pony, to meet the expectations of an audience used to the brilliance of writerVictoria Pile. However, the new comedy, following the lives of staff and students at the fictitious Kirke University, has matured and proven to become a hilarious depiction of characters in an ‘archetypal’ university campus. Amongst the brilliant extreme
and hyper -charged characters is the bigoted, sexist and racist Jonty De Wolfe, Vice Chancellor of Kirke. Equally amusing as he is disturbing, the show follows his bizarre attempts to raise the prestige and reputation of the University through any means possible – from making staff members play ‘Twister’ in order to keep their jobs, to persuading a student to commit suicide over a budget mishap. Although obvious and superficial comparisons can be seen between De Wolfe and David Brent of The Office, the flashes of dark and twisted genius drawn from Kirke’s Vice Chancellor set him apart from anything cast in the Gervais mould. As the series has progressed, we come to see that the real brilliance
Saoirse Ronan stars as Hanna Photo: moviewallpapers.com
As a keen reader of the Observer Food Monthly, I was excited to be attending this event - especially to see restaurant critic Jay Rayner and chef Yottam Ottolenghi, two culinary legends, on stage. Rayner was the host of the panel discussion, entitled “The Politics and Pleasures of Food”, and Ottolenghi was part of the panel, along with Masterchef winner Tomasina Meyers, editor of OFM Allan Jenkins and food writer Fuchsia Dunlop. It should have been an evening of lively discussion and foodie talk but instead it was... well, a teensy bit dull. Rayner was extremely engaging as chairman, making the audience laugh, keeping the discussion moving and even poking fun at his own sizeable paunch (what do you expect if you literally eat for a living?), but the discussion itself was quite repetitive and not particularly riveting. The panel did cover some interesting topics, including the virtues of organic food, an issue which was properly explored and on which the panel disagreed, with Ottolenghi dismissing the concept altogether as somewhat of a scam, and Tomasina Meyers arguing for the need for greater sustainability. Some very interesting statistics were mentioned, including the fact that 30% of our food in the UK goes to waste. From this perspective, the discussion was thought-provoking in that it made me consider the ethics of food in a way I never really had before. However, for a talk promising “pleasures and politics”, it was definitely lacking in the pleasures department. I’d expect five serious food professionals to want to talk about their favourite recipes, food trends and new ideas but everyone seemed keen to assert how serious they were about the ethical issues (apart from Fuchsia Dunlop, who made little contribution other than to plug her own book). There was also a prevailing sense of middle-class guilt hanging over the whole event, with all the panellists repeating the vague sentiment that even people with very little money can cook healthy, exciting food, whilst ignoring the fact that in reality, heavily processed food products are so much cheaper and convenient for the everyday family. The discussion culminated in questions from the audience, none of which were particularly insightful, although the very last one was from a woman who just wanted to add something positive to the proceedings by telling us all about her local food co-operative group - she received loud applause and a big smile from us all. Despite this somewhat ambivalent review, I did enjoy myself, especially afterwards when, my appetite whetted by all the food talk, I went across the road to the Japanese restaurant Pompoko and enjoyed an excellent chicken curry. Who knows? Perhaps I’m Jay Rayner in the making.
Gig reviews Ruth Atkinson Mayday Parade 16 May Concorde 2 Before their gig at Concorde 2, Mayday Parade was previously unchartered territory for me. The band had come straight from their tour in Germany, hitting the UK with their fourth visit to the UK: having formed in 2005 I thought this was a fairly impressive repertoire and a good start. However, the American rock boy band were aesthetically and musically predictable as part of the emo punk scene, revealing an evening full of clichés. While I personally struggle to see the appeal of both music and appearance, this is clearly what some people buy into- indeed Concorde 2 was on its way to being full. The venue harboured a bazaar array of characters, revealing a crowd of lusting teenage girls shrieking at the front, tattooed adults and strangely enough the occasional elderly lone Sam Durrant Animal Collective 16 May Winter Gardens Eastbourne’s residents have closed up for the evening, leaving only a youthful snail trail from the train station to the beach’s promenade. Surely for many it’s their first time in the town, not least Animal Collective themselves, for whom this evening is a chance to flesh out new material live, away from the limelight of major Madeleine Graham Garfunkel and Simon 11 May The Cowley Club The Cowley Club is a great venue, consistently a friendly and welcoming connection to the eclectic and alternative musicians from the Brighton scene, with nights funded on suggested donations. The opener of the evening was roots musician and promising talent, Freddie Manners, someone who I hope to see again
Music room Liv James Arts editor
man. Most components of the audience seemed appreciative of the night, caught up in the two youthful support bands- also American- in the build up to Mayday Parade. Indeed once the main band had come on, the crowd were continually singing along and awkwardly dancing to whatever the five American males threw their way.While I was not moved to do either and found it difficult to differentiate between the seemingly monotonous songs compacted with lyrical heartbreak and teenage angst, I was entranced by the musician’s energetic enthusiasm and sporadic movements. Their passion for their own music was evident as they jumped around the stage, flinging their guitars and head-banging continually. This was largely distracting and directed attention away from any musical talent potentially being displayed. While I was wholly unenthused by the band and more than glad to escape by the end, I’m content with the thought that presumably, at least someone, left the gig feeling satisfied.
Mayday Parade Photo: eastwest.ilgpress.com
festivals and the big city lights. To me Animal Collective’s sound is best summed up as liquid pop, and for sure the new material has their touch; high reaching harmony, heavilytreated ‘wet’ samples, but many shift to a new, almost Rio Carnivalesque level of intensity, tempo and bravado, adding a dash of high-life afro guitar and not-unlike-dubstep percussion loops. The crowd seem intrigued by the band’s evolved palette, whilst Merriweather Post Pavilion’s Brothersport creates a swell of warm
familiarity that starts a sort of swaying, wooping, lyrical tennis match. Similarly, ‘Summertime Clothes’ garners a euphoric crowd reaction. A wall of psychedelic sound, spectacle and general oddity mesmerises the audience, who do not seem to mind much that the group choose to perform only the afore mentioned tracks from their extensive back catalogue (that’s right, no ‘My Girls’ here.) Avey Tare sits at an electric organ for most of the show, whilst Panda Bear is firmly on drumming duties. Geologist, donning the lamp
headgear he owes his stage name to, stands as an ominous cyclops-like figure at centre stage. With an encore of only one anonymous ten minute ballad, again filled with bold prog-like melody and emphatic rhythm, it’s clear the band’s eyes are still focused towards the sky, seemingly incapable of producing music that doesn’t in some way capture the imagination and further their sonic idiosyncrasy. The crowd exits the ballroom, chandeliers et al, in high spirits for future releases, leaving sleepy Eastbourne.
in the future. He has a pure voice, tinged beautifully with emotion and feeling over slick rootsy folk licks and rhythms on guitar. His songs composed of witty lyrics based on a wide range of subjects, a certain hint of Johnny Flynn for comparison. The second act of the evening, Perch, usually found as part of Fat Bicth, was playing experimental postrock guitar, switching methodically between heavy thumping distortions to intricate instrumental melodies. His opening song was particularly delightful with eastern influences
coming through had the crowd head nodding appreciatively. Perch deserved accompaniment from live drums for a fuller richer sound as he was playing (very tightly I might add) over recorded beats. The final act of the evening starred some of our very own Sussex talent. The night reverted back to acoustic style guitar, provided by anti-folk solo artist named Garfunkel & Simon (real name Patrick Dowson). Born and bred in Bradford, Garfunkel & Simon’s tongue-in-cheek performance was clearly enjoyed
by both the performer and the audience- with singing witticisms and humorous observations on life (and lots of references to Bradford). The highlights of the set included a song about life as student in Brighton and a cover song of Five’s ‘Keep on Moving’ which elicited a sing along from the crowd. An enjoyable array of talented acts from a range of musical genres made for a wonderful night at The Cowley Club, certainly some local artists to watch out for.
standing at £43, not such a friendly figure to a student budget. Luckily for us, though, there are a number of schemes and initiatives targeted at young people that not only sell tickets at a very low cost, but also provide access to workshops and debates for those passionate about plays. The innovative ‘A Night Less Ordinary’ scheme that provided 16-25 year olds with a free night at the theatre has now been culled by government cuts, but fortunately opportunities do still remain for the chance to experience high quality performances at low prices. Perhaps most rewarding of these is the National Theatre ‘Entry Pass’ scheme. A short form returned to the box office will result in being given a membership card which entitles the bearer to see any play for £5, and bring a friend for only £7.50. It may be too late to see the critically acclaimed production of Danny Boyle’s Frankenstein, but the
coming season will see such exciting productions as Zoe Wanamaker in Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard, and James Corden in One Man, Two Guv’nors. In addition to this, the National provides the chance for members to attend discussions with cast members, and workshops, such as an insight into digital theatre and how to perform combat on stage. More locally, the Chichester Theatre in Sussex sells tickets to students for only £7, giving attendees a chance to see productions such as Trevor Nunn’s Rosencrantz and Guildernstern are Dead before they hit the West End. Theatre Royal Haymarket’s ‘Masterclass’ scheme gives a limited number of tickets to young people for £2, but also provides free workshops from some of the biggest theatre stars treading the boards today. The ‘Masterclass’ can be seen in action when it visits the Brighton Fringe Festival from 15-17th May. The Old Vic, home
to artistic director Kevin Spacey, provides tickets for every production for only £12 to those under the age of 25, whilst the Royal Shakespeare Company provides invitations to special events for young people, as well as cheap tickets. Additionally, for those of us in this lucky age band, The Barbican’s ‘freeB’ scheme boasts a number of 30,000 free tickets to theatre, dance, art and music events. The importance of theatre in our society is evidently crucial when regarding the huge figures that demonstrate its popularity – however, some of its magic is evident too in its unwillingness to close the door on those of us who can’t afford the top price tickets, allowing us to experience the thrill of watching the works we trawl over in the library brought to life, making us understand why we study them, for only a fraction of the price.
Centre stage Jessie Thompson Arts editor Purse strings may be being tightened and fists planted firmly into pockets, but the luxurious practice of going to the theatre seems to have risen above the limitations of the recession – in 2010 London theatre enjoyed a buoyant year. Total box office receipts reached a stunning total of £512,331,808 meaning that more than 14 million people attended plays and musicals. Perhaps the gargantuan figures were due to the amount of high quality productions that graced the stage that year, or maybe it was simply the sense of fun and escapism that a night in the stalls can bring amongst the doom and gloom of current financial crisis. For a student, however, it is not quite so easy to treat yourself to a night out at the theatre with the average West End ticket price now
The latest addition to the Brighton Sea front nightlife is The Tube (previously known as Funky Buddha Lounge). It is quite literally a tube shape, bringing banging beats over a fantastic sound system, it is simply very refreshing. It has been taken over by the team from Life and on the mission to continue to bring great DJs and live acts to Brighton. But could this be too much of an ambition for Brighton? They are determined to deliver excellent electronic music but will anyone want to listen to it in a city that is dominated by Dubstep and DnB? Techno, house and minimal are hard to find in Brighton and when you do the entry fee can be outrageous. The Tube’s prices are not above £5, even on a Saturday and even when the DJ that is playing is worth a lot more, including the likes of Kassem Mosse, Paul Woolford, Mike Dehnert, and Jack Master. The crowds are reflecting the era of the 90s party scene as students seemed to have missed the boat on the electronic music or perhaps think it’s cheesy without giving it a chance. Perhaps to many it’s a little out of fashion, but that’s not to say it shouldn’t make a come back as in my eyes if go to The Tube and your guaranteed a great night! The Sound system is one of the more intense in Brighton that I have experienced. The speakers being at either end of the tube allowing for the noise to reflect leaving you feeling as if the music is running through your body.The DJ is tucked away at the back in a modest booth which makes you feel as if you are out for an experience as apposed to a night out as well as keeping the all too familiar DJ ego-trip to a low. Running parallel to the dance floor is the bar where drinks are priced fairly, but not cheap. It is confusing to have such brilliant names on the line up, cheap entry prices, but middle of the road drinks? What crowd are they trying to attract? Currently it seems to be a non-student crowd, but that is not to say these people don’t party just as hard (from experience!) If you have passed up the chance to go, I strongly recommend you don’t do it again! Give The Tube a chance as it would be a shame to see this gem of club go under as it only enhances the diversity of Brighton’s music scene! Every Friday they run Motel, a ‘night of sleazy house and electro, big beats, stripped back bar vibes and endless late nights’. They say the music is the forefront, not the money, so lets support this new club and keeps its doors open by testing the waters. If house isn’t your scene there has been (and no doubt will be more) great nights wonkay and garage nights featuring Wookie and Deadyboy. Every Thursday they run Pop. It ‘will combine the underground and alternative clubbing scene of Brighton with commercial feelgood vibes, to create a unique weekly club night that will freshen up your nightlife.’ This weekend The Tube will be host to Sigha and Groove Odyssey. Two definite dates for the Diary!
If you want to see your event on these pages, contact Olivia James with the venue, date and time of your event, a short description, and any relevant images. Send your request to badger-listings@ussu. sussex.ac.uk by the Tuesday of the week before your event is happening at the very latest.
Win Win A New Jersey lawyer who struggles to balance his work with his home life while moonlighting as a wrestling coach at the local high school.
Dissertation DASH! Come celebrate the Dissertation hand in, including the infamous dash, there will be music, games and fun for you to enjoy and unwind to, so give yourself a massive pat on the back and a well deserved cold drink!
Frankenstein, This new solo show traces one man’s journey from joy to madness in a physically dynamic reworking of a classic tale. Speaking to the core of human experience - passion, love, grief, isolation and identity.
Jail Bait Get your weekly dose of cheese, 90s hip hop, garage and all the student favourites...
the duke of york
Fareshare B&H They support the local community in fighting food poverty and are several interesting volunteering opportunities available with this project: fundraising, driving, assisting in the food depot or in the project’s office.
Monsters and Prodigies This delirious mix of circus lampoon and academic treatise, sublime music and extreme physical comedy, stars a hoofstomping centaur, Siamese twins and even Napoleon Bonaparte!
falmer house foyer
Stephen Grant: The Clown Joules Brand new show from the Brighton comedian and host of Krater Comedy Club full of pedantry, energy, interaction, jokes in questionable taste and laughs in his annual show. “Exhilarating” ***** Chortle
Wednesday club night
Prangin’ The newest night in Brighton bringing the widest range of music, Hip-Hop/GoldenOldies/Motown/Electro/Dubstep/Chart and more. Some of the cheapest drink prices on a Wednesday night!
.McNeil and Pamphilon: Addicted To
Danger! Award-Winners duo present the best from their 2010 Edinburgh show along with new material from their Time Out-recommended London sketch night.
Pete the Temp He is a poet, a lover and a damn fine administrator. Watch him dismantle industrial capitalism with his mouth! Pete takes a satirical look at a serious problem and our attempts to tackle it.
Simon Munnery: Mock the Strong The UK’s leading impersonator, Simon Munnery. Never willing to blow his own trumpet, he was asked to leave the London Philharmonic after considerable friction.
upstairs at three and ten
upstairs at three and ten
7pm, Also on Thursday
brighton university, grand parade, room
7pm club night
Second Year Dash! The end is in sight! There is music and entertainment to celebrate the second year hand in so get yours in nice and early and treat yourself to a cool refreshing drink!
As You Like It Shakespeare’s romantic comedy performed in cross-dressing attire!
A Round-Up of Archaeology at Varley Halls and Culver Come and hear illustrated talks by Lisa Fisher, David Millum and Rob Wallace on the 2010
Comic Boom The best rising stars of UK comedy plus more established headline acts. Featuring headliner Mike Wosniak.
st nicholas’ rest garden
7pm, £1 (non-members)
The Badger writers’ meetings Want to write for the Badger? Come down and meet our friendly editors every Friday to pick up a story or share your ideas.
Generik Vapeur: Droles d’Oiseaux A convoy of white cars are hung on a washing line and splashed with paint, whilst live rock music drives the procession onwards with edgy industrial energy.
Deadly Rhythm Presents.. Addison Groove and Dark Sky plus more. In support we’ve got Brighton regulars Dubloke and Sticky Davis, so you know you’re in capable hands, as well as Deadly Rhythm’s own man Paste.
Enzo Siffredi presents. . . We would have liked to book Tiesto for the launch but due to some of Enzo’s comments, his agent wouldn’t deal with us at all so we just went for the cheapest Disc Jokey out of the world’s top 10 - Riva Starr.
falmer house, room
excavations and survey work at Varley Halls and Culver Farm. All are welcome.
Soulfood A night of funk, hip hop and disco to celebrate essay hand in day...with cheap drinks all night long!
7.45pm (moving to the level on sunday)
Life Talk A Meaningful Life A talk with a personal slant on the Buddha’s teachings
I Shall Not Hate How does one man find the strength and to forgive? During the Israeli incursion into Gaza, Abuelaish saw his 3 daughters shot. His response, was to broadcast live on Israeli TV, calling for peace and reconciliation.
La Bordello Boheme Join the Bordello Boheme ladies once again as they transform the Ballrooms into a big top. There shall be camp circus cabaret with world renowned burlesque dancers, live music, circus acts, and much more.
Sigha A collision of Dubstep and Techno that joins the dots between underground forms of electronic music and forging exciting new hybrids in the process.
the buddhist centre
12pm, 2.30pm & 5pm, free
Don’t Feed the Poets: End of Festival Cabaret Let the Fringe end with a raucous, ramshackle bang as we hand over the stage to a rag-tag of our favourite poets, musicians and poet-musicians.
Reggae Sunday Session
Sunday club day/night
Wonkay Bank Holiday All Dayer Dub, dubstep, wonkay, psytrance and more! Bands, Live acts and DJs all in aid the World Land Trust and of course have a good time whilst doing it!
The Ballad Of Reading Gaol Sensitive performance based on Oscar Wilde’s poem about the suffering he endured when he was imprisoned for being too gay.
A huge selection of local cider and ales will be avail- Jamaican Reggae roasts, jerk chicken, rice able all day with a BBQ ed meat, fish and salads f. and peas, and a side salad for £6.95. Plus Make sure you grab a tasting glass so you can “try traditional roasts and our normal menu. before you buy” and pick your favourite drink from the menu!
upstairs at three and ten
12pm (also sat and mon)
The fountain of youth The secrets behind Olay’s magic pentapeptides Alkisti Alevropoulou-Mali The fear of ageing and the quest for long lasting beauty are concepts that have long troubled humankind. Thankfully in the present day there is a huge range of products available promising magical solutions to these very troubles. In order to keep things simple, I’m going to focus this blog article on just the one particular range that caught my eye, and which also happens to be the Pentapeptide-packed
product that I’ve been able to find the most information on. The infamous “Olay Regenerist Anti-ageing cream”, presenting itself with scientific credibility and claiming that “Formulated with the exclusive Olay AminoPeptide B-3 Complex, Regenerist combines a specific pentapeptide, Pal-KTTKS, with other proven anti-aging ingredients to firm and lift sagging skin, even along the jawline!” Sounds like it may be the solution
What are pentapeptides? Photo: femalemag.co.uk
we’ve all been hoping for, right? But what on earth are they talking about when they say “pentapeptides”? And, more importantly, should we take such sciency claims at face value? My first response as a biochemist is to cry out in horror and say that adverts such as this are complete BS and an insult to our intelligence, simply for assuming that by throwing sciency words around we’ll all be impressed and flock to the shops. But that’s just my personal opinion, so let me explain my reasoning: Firstly, throwing around the term “pentapeptide” is a bit ridiculous. It is the scientific term for a protein made up of five aminoacids (the building components of proteins in all living things). The reason using this term in adverts is ridiculous is that it is so general that it could be used to describe thousands of different possible proteins, in much the same way that the term “food” can be used to describe thousands of vastly different dishes. It’s even more ridiculous to use the term “aminopeptide” as all peptides are made of amino-acids. It’s like saying “this product contains wet water” – all water is wet by default! But what about the studies that are quoted by adverts in the Olay Regenerist range? I mean there’s no smoke without fire, right? In the adverts they say that “Pal-KTTKS” and “Amino-Peptide Complex B3” are proven active anti-ageing ingredients. In response to these claims, I decided to go in search of the fire behind the smoke, so I searched the web and the most popular scientific publication database (PubMed) for information, and here’s what I found: Amino-Peptide Complex B3 seems to be non-existent. I couldn’t find mention of it anywhere except for on websites specifically talking about Olay Regenerist adverts.
There is no mention of it in PubMed or any mention of it in any scientific context anywhere else that I looked. Either it is just made-up, or it’s possible that Olay were somehow using it as an alternative name for “Pal-KTTKS”. How about this weird “PalKTTKS” they speak of? Well, it’s full name is palmitoyl-lysine-threonine-threonine-lysine-serine, which is basically a list of the five amino-acids it is made up of, and the “palmitoyl” bit is just a reference to something they use so it can be absorbed by the skin better. This pentapeptide is a chunk of a larger protein that is normally involved in collagen production, and the reason this chunk has been focused on is because if we chop the larger protein up, the KTTKS chunk is the smallest chunk that can still lead to collagen being made, meaning it’s important. This was all shown by a study carried out in 1993 in the states, which was published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry (a pretty legit paper). KTTKS is mentioned in a couple of other studies, most of which are carried out by Proctor & Gamble and are published in journals such as the International Journal of Cosmetic Science. However, unfortunately, the studies described in these papers aren’t particularly well written and it’s quite easy to pick holes in them. Some of their results are produced by getting a couple of “experts” (employed by Proctor & Gamble) to look at pictures of people’s faces and grade them, on a scale of -4 to +4, for how wrinkled they appear. This isn’t a particularly solid scientific method. Furthermore, the reason I keep mentioning Proctor & Gamble is that they actually own Olay, the whole cosmetics company. So I guess it’s only typical that studies showing the advantages of their product have been carried out by
themselves. By this stage it may sound like I’m being picky and a bit mean. Surely, just because a company does its own studies to promote its product doesn’t really mean they’re doing anything wrong – It’s only in their best interests. However, in 2009 the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) carried out an investigation into the Olay Regenerist advertising campaign because, amoung other reasons, a Doctor expressed concern that the advert’s scientific claims were misleading. Eventually, after analysing both published and unpublished data carried out by Proctor & Gamble, the ASA ruled that the data was indeed misleading and that no significant advantages were seen in tests involving pentapeptides. As a result, the advertising campaign was banned from being broadcast again. The full Adjudication was published by the ASA. And that, folks, is the end of this story. Even though in this particular case it looks like the scientific claims being sold to us with the product are not all that reliable, it doesn’t necessarily mean that this is always the case. And, by all means, this doesn’t mean that all Olay products are misleading. At the end of the day, we’ve all tried moisturising and anti-ageing creams and they still feel refreshing and leave our skin relatively uncreased, so these companies must be doing something right! I’d love to write something more optimistic about the stuff the cosmetics industry is doing right, and how come our products still feel good, even though the scientific claims mentioned in the adverts may not necessarily be 100% honest. I hope this wasn’t too boring, and remember to be a little skeptical when it comes to cosmetic products. After all, you’re going to be rubbing the stuff on your face every day!
Fish farming - an alternative view
In regards to the article two weeks ago, on fish farms on the high sea. I wish the readers of the badger to have another, more ethical idea, on how to feed the increasing world population. The production of cereals, such as maize, rice, and wheat have tripled in 50 years, to over 2000 million metric tonnes. However this is not going directly into feeding the human population. Instead this is being used to feed increasing amount livestock, as more and more people strive for a western lifestyle. In 1961 the worlds total meat supply was a mere 70 million tonnes, by 2007 it has increased to 280 million tonnes, by 2050 it is thought we would be consuming our way through 465 million
tonnes of meat per year. It is thought that instead, if we used the same land that is currently used for grain production for feed, for growing pulses we could grow 10 to 20 times the amount of protein and calories. It doesn’t stop there, it has been estimated that the livestock sector uses 45% of the water in food production. In fact a vegan diet uses 300 gallons of water per day, while the average meat eater requires 4200 gallons of water per day. Livestock also cover about 30% of the earth’s surface, a lot of this increase has been taken up in areas that were once rainforest, in fact agriculture is responsible for 60% of the global deforestation. You should also know about what comes out the other side, livestock are amazing polluters. They emit 18% of our greenhouse gases (less
than transport emissions), and 64% of ammonia emission, which cause acid rain and acidification of ecosystems. It is estimated that 2.2 pounds of beef is equivalent CO2 emitted as the average european car, travelling 155 miles. Its not just the atmospheric environment that it effects, overgrazing is responsible for 35% of global soil degradation, 55% of soil erosion, 37% of pesticide use, 50% of antibiotics use, and 1/3 of nitrogen and phosphorus in freshwater systems comes from livestock. Don’t believe me? Have a read of the UN report titled Livestock’s Long Shadow. A change in your diet could be all that is needed to feed the world, ethically and sustainably. So give those vegetables a chance, and perhaps you
Is this really the ideal solution? Photo: lh3.ggpht.com could even join the other 3.6 million vegetarians in the UK? We don’t bite, promise!
Yours An ethical, environmental, vegan, conservationist.
Electric Einstein? Roving Rutherford? Fancy writing for the Badger science page? Write a 500-1000 word article on whatever excites and inspires you in the world of science and email it to email@example.com.
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Varsity victory completes Women Rugby’s perfect season Irene Morgan Sussex 17-15 Brighton The Varsity match this year between University of SussexWomen’s Rugby and Brighton was fraught with even more tension than usual; as winners of their league, Sussex were moving up into the league above, whilst Brighton, having a poor season this year, have been demoted intoWomen’s 2A South Eastern Conference. So Sussex felt they had something to prove – that they deserved to be moving up into a more competitive league. A win against Brighton was vital for those whose last game it was for Sussex Rugby and also for the mindset of the girls who would be playing next year. Very few minutes after the whistle was blown for the beginning of the game it was obvious that Brighton and Sussex were reasonably equally matched, though an unfortunate penalty given away to Brighton put three points on the board for the opposing team. This was shortly followed by a dangerous looking break by one of Brighton’s particularly speedy backs, but outside centre Jess Forbes demonstrated her wonderful skills and tackled the Brighton player to the ground metres from the try line. Sussex struck back almost immediately; after a particularly strong scrum the ball was taken out to the backs, who were simply too quick for the confused Brighton team. Naomi Passley then spotted a gap and broke through Brighton’s defensive line
and scored the first try of the game. For the remainder of the second half Sussex were clearly dominating in the scrums, constantly stealing Brighton’s ball, though Brighton’s somewhat illegal tactics of holding on after the tackle and handling the ball on the floor in rucks prevented Sussex from being able to put more points on the board. Half time was called and due to an apparent injury, Brighton were asking for uncontested scrums, as they claimed they did not have an experienced front row. This put Sussex at a massive disadvantage as throughout the season their scrums have proved to be a particular strong point and in this game in particular, Brighton’s scrums simply could not take Sussex’s powerful hits. However, this did not phase Sussex, and number 10 Louise Florey proved she was an important asset to the team as she both scored and converted the second try of the game, bringing the score to 3-12. Sussex were perhaps beginning to become complacent and letting their fatigue get the better of them, and in this lapse of concentration Brighton were able to take advantage of gaps and score their first try. In the remainder of the game Sussex did not appear as together as they had in the previous half, and with five minutes to go Brighton sneaked past a number of Sussex players and scored yet another lucky try, with a conversion meaning that Brighton were ahead and almost certain to win with such little time left.
Women’s Rugby celebrate their stunning last minute Varsity win over Brighton Photo: Sarah Hall Team Captain Sarah Keeling gave an emotional and inspirational speech in which she called on Sussex Rugby to prove their worth in the last minutes, and put everything they had into the game. Sussex truly delivered this and worked their way up towards the try line in seconds, and out of nowhere it seemed the Referee called the last play of the game. Metres from the try line, every single ounce of effort was channelled into driving through Brighton players, resulting in a winning try from Jo Stovell; the whistle was blown and Sussex Rugby celebrated with tears and cheers their first Varsity win in many years. Sussex completely and utterly
deserved the final result, as they put an unprecedented amount of passion and dedication into everything they did on the pitch. Sussex finally have possession of the Natalie Naylor trophy once again, which is dedicated to a old Sussex Rugby girl who tragically died of meningitis in 2004, and in whose honour the game is played for every year; more details can be found at www.natalienaylortrustfund.co.uk. A huge thank you to Sarah Keeling in particular, who has truly lead Sussex Rugby to victory this year, and whose presence will be sorely missed. Overall, the day was an apt end to an amazing and successful season.
RESULTS Women (146 all out) lost to Portsmouth (147-5) Women (193-3) beat Chichester (24 all out) Men’s 1st XI (164-4) beat Imperial (160 all out) Men’s 2nd XI vs Imperial 2nd postponed Men’s 3rd XI (160 all out) lost to Royal Holloway (185 all out)
Ones move closer to the title Threes suffer close defeat
The Men’s 1st XI, led for the first time by Geoff Fitzgerald, embarked on the epic train journey to Imperial in the knowledge that only a win would keep their title chances alive. Confidence in the team was high after successive wins over Portsmouth and Chichester and the Imperial captain’s decision to bat first on a wicket which offered a bit to the bowlers was met with some optimism in the Sussex camp. The Imperial openers started steadily in the first 10 overs with Sussex a little flat in the field; a problem that could at least in part be attributed to the fact that they had been on the 11:38 from Clapham Junction only a brief time earlier. The introduction of the change bowlers, Sam Jewiss and Najmus Jamil, helped turn the tide back in Sussex’s favour. Jewiss, initially employing a surprisingly effective bodyline tactic on a slow wicket, went on to bowl an excellent spell of fast, accurate inswing bowling and was hugely unlucky to go wicketless. Jamil, bowling at the other end, preyed on the pressure created by Jewiss and ripped out the Imperial top order with three wickets in a five over burst with stumps tumbling and fist pumping celebrations all over the place. Despite one strong innings played by the Imperial number 4, Sussex managed to maintain their stranglehold on the innings eventually bowling Imperial out for an under par score of 160. Jamil eventually returned to complete his five-for and the bowling of
Hassan Zia (3 wickets) and Osama Ashraf (2 wickets, both in his first over) was noteworthy for its excellence, as was a sharp leg-side catch by keeper Warren Celiz and a generally good fielding performance all round. The Sussex reply got off to a flying start with openers Zia and Jamil dispatching the bowling to all parts. By the time Jamil was dismissed, caught by the wicket keeper after a swashbuckling cameo, Sussex had 60 on the board and were well ahead of the run rate. Then came a mini-collapse with Celiz and Crossley falling early and jitters understandably entered the camp once more.The Imperial attack began to bowl very well and piled the pressure on the Sussex batsmen with huge appeals every time the ball struck the batsmen below the hip. Tom Woodall was sent in at five to join Zia with a mandate to steady to ship, and he was soon up and running with a glorious square drive. The pair batted excellently together effectively taking the game away from Imperial. Zia eventually departed for 47, a top-class innings full of his famous old-school, but effective, dabs through the slips and it was left to Woodall and Paul ‘Embique’ Holiday to finish the game and secure the comfortable and impressive win by six wickets. Woodall, with his superb 39 not out, won plaudits not only for his positive stroke play but also for his calmness of mind throughout. Sussex now face Surrey in their final game knowing that a win will secure them an unprecedented and deserved promotion.
Chris Farrell A battling performance was not enough for Sussex 3’s who suffered a 26 run defeat to Royal Holloway 1’s. After electing to bat on a hard but suspect wicket, Royal Holloway made a solid start to their innings setting into the Sussex opening bowlers. The introduction of man of the match Jonathan Buzzing, who took a superb 4-34 from 10 overs. It really was a classy spell of bowling from Buzzing who’s spot in the team was beginning to look in doubt. Buzzing bowled superbly in tandem with off spineer Nikhil Jones, 8 overs 1-11, to frustrate the Royal Holloway batsmen in the middle overs, meaning they needed to hit out towards the end in order to post a competitive total. Thankfully for Sussex debutant Jon Smith and Vice-Captain Charlie Gorton bowled well at the death taking two wickets apiece to limit Holloway to 185, a total that Sussex firmly believed they would chase down. After a tea lacking somewhat in vitamin C, the Sussex batsmen were in good spirits and confident of chasing down what seemed to be a below par score in a decent, if unpredictable at times, wicket. In reply, Sussex started reasonably with openers Stroud and Simmons expertly negotiating a testing spell from the Holloway opening bowlers. One bowler in particualr was extremely impressing, after five overs he had only gone for one run. However, the pressure of chasing finally got to Sussex and a poor shot from a previously solid Simmons cost him his
wicket, which was the catalyst for a middle order collapse. Stroud departed for a crafty 18 after snicking a beautiful ball behind. Next to go were Farrell and Franklin who fell foul to the pressure exerted by the Holloway openers. It was only the lower order who got Sussex close, with handy contributions from Weldon-Ming (25), Denton (27) and Gorton (20) nearly bringing victory. Ming looked impressive dispatching the second change bowlers to all parts of the boundary. Unfortunately a sharp caught and bowled saw the end of him. Denton and Gorton rebuilt and started to push Sussex close. Denton departed and was shortly followed by Gorton. Sussex hoped that the tail end could wag and drag Sussex over the target. It was not to be however, Buzzing was the last wicket and Sussex were bowled out for 160. After the game club President Matt Stroud was philosophical in defeat, he said ‘It was a close game and all of our lads can hold their heads high because they all put in the effort. Ultimately, it was a middle order collapse, and possibly some lose bowling that cost us dear.’ A disappointed Captain Tom Simmons said, ‘We are still safe as things stand, we are waiting to hear about Reading’s results, but we are confident of staying up. Safety was the primary objective at the start of the season, and if we manage that it will be a real achievement for us.’ Sussex are waiting for the rearrangement of their game with Kings College and need a victory to guarantee safety in Division 4A for another year.
Women’s Cricket ended their league matches on a high on Wednesday, beating the University of Chichester by 165 runs. The victory came after two tough defeats for the team; first away to Southampton and then at home to Portsmouth. This match was a mustwin game, as defeat would mean that Sussex would not reach the knockout cup, as they had done the previous year. The weather conditions were hardly ideal for the match against Chichester; it had been drizzling throughout the day and continued for most of the first innings, while fog enveloped Falmer sports complex, making visibility at times difficult. Despite losing opener Rachel Coles for just 1 run, Sussex batted well, with opener Izzy Dolling and captain Lydia Stevens setting up a formidable partnership. Dolling was eventually caught behind on 63, but this did not stop Stevens scoring, she finished with 83 not out and Sussex on 193 for 3. The team put in an incredible performance on the pitch, led by the bowlers who showed brilliant discipline, bowling Chichester out for 28. The bowlers Lydia Stevens, Maya Hanspal, Amna Ghafoor and Charlotte Dalton finished with impressive figures: Stevens took 3 wickets for 5, Hanspal with 3 for 12 runs, Ghafoor with 3 for 3, and Dalton taking 1 for 8. It was a brilliant performance for Sussex’s final league match and should leave Sussex second in the table and so entered into a knockout cup for the second year running.
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