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The Student Pocket Guide Ltd, 5 Chalk Hill House, 19 Rosary Road, Norwich, NR1 1SZ Tel: 01603 610281 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Web: www.thestudentpocketguide.com All Rights Reserved © The Student Pocket Guide Ltd 2011. The entire contents of this publication are protected by copyright. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form. The publishers do not accept responsibility for any of the views or opinions expressed in this guide, errors or omissions which may have occurred, or accept liability for any services or facilities featured. Whilst every effort is made to ensure that all information is correct, changes may and can occur. The Student Pocket Guide is a trading name of The Student Pocket Guide Ltd.
e n! We hop it has bee arged the ch a summer Well what yed it and have re academic jo you’ve en ready for anotheraround the working in the best batteries ve been year! We’ ain to set you off u a student ag clock yet anner, offering yo content, possible m with unrivalled interviews, magazine s with exclusive the rafter ch more! packed to ays and much, mu w ea s with not vice, giv interview features, ad nt to you anaging to catch se re p to es. roud UK, m n we are p ttest artists in the h and The Vaccin hers editio ho wic In this Fres ree, but four of the jamin Francis Left two, not th ample, Katy B, Ben deed! in h the rview wit up with Exr you say. Yes, wow n’t an inte ntastic? Yes it ld u o w , w Wow, I hea fa ant be ere... No n his n’t stop th ero Stephen Merch bout to embark o ew n h A on, it does But hang enius and national oh, we have one! pated release of his usy b ... comedy g and wait a minute the eagerly antici w minutes into his ing lk as would be, d-up tour, as well ’, we squeezed a fe as in store for us, ta rt an h first UK st ries ‘Life’s Too Sho re about what he Bloody brilliant. ! se o television find out a little m dies along the way to la schedule roblems with the p about his , at. emic year ath after th , s this acad out of bre be with u ocketGuide.com to u I’m a little yo t tP rtain den d wan e way, an online at TheStu and why not ente sical th l al u r, u us h yo We’re wit lved and follow cebook and Twitte h interviews and m vo Fa med wit so get in cial networks on am cr ; el n an join our soith our YouTube ch ll be back yourself w ces. s, and we’ an yourselve r te af k perform o year, lo academic ut. o to a good So here’s ry soon! Over and ve with you
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Take One Small
The Student Pocket Guide was born in a bedroom in 2005. Six years later, the company employs a full-time team of seven, operating from city centre ofﬁces, distributing the magazine across twenty cities nationwide. Founder, Ben Farrin, explains how he managed to start a business from scratch and go on to win the Barclays ‘Take One Small Step’ competition and receive a £50,000 investment.
Founder, Ben Farrin, centre with TV presenter Kate Thornton and former apprentice winner Tim Campbell.
A long time ago back in 2005, I set out into the big wide world armed with my Graphic Design HND, my portfolio and enthusiasm. Unfortunately I lacked professional experience and found myself competing with older, more experienced people, for relatively low paid Graphic
Design jobs. I was unable to secure myself the breakthrough job, or in fact ﬁnd anything closely related to the subject I had studied. Deep down I knew I had the passion and the work ethic; I just needed the chance to show my ability to learn, and earn my position in the market.
Bills had to be paid and I was running out of time fast, so I ended up working as a window fabricator (making windows), simply to get by. At the end of that year I was lumbered with a hefty council tax bill as I was living with students who were council tax exempt. Ultimately this forced me out of Norwich, the place in which I had studied and lived for the past few years, back to my father’s house in Hertfordshire, where I then became a temporary postman. As I was often home by midday I offered to work for free in the afternoons for a local Product Design company, with whom I was fortunate enough to travel to Germany, China, Hong Kong and America for business related trips. Although my business experience was still relatively minimal, I had learnt one important lesson: honesty, reliability and generally being nice to people will get you a long way, and in this instance half way around the world! I saved, saved and saved, then six months later decided to move back to Norwich to once again try to secure a full-time, paid Graphic Design job with the skills I had since acquired. I was hit with déjà-vu. Jobs were scarce, money wasn’t going to last forever, and I found myself surrounded by negativity. I then had a sudden brain wave. I had moved from Hertfordshire to Norwich to go to university, and like many other students was unfamiliar with my new surroundings. I simply asked myself “what is a student?” To me the answer was simple; anyone in education aged 16 upwards, male or female, rich or poor. And there came my eureka moment: to create a free student publication, targeted towards students at colleges and universities in Norwich.
Feedback for the idea was great and the ﬁrst edition of The Student Pocket Guide was produced for freshers in 2005. Having ﬁgured students would beneﬁt from this publication each term, I then decided to launch edition two and three that same academic year. Working from my bedroom I was designing the magazine, meeting clients, selling the advertising space, raising invoices, sourcing the content and distributing, amongst all the other day-to-day jobs. This was lesson two: You can’t do it all yourself! With the reputation of the magazine growing, I found myself being contacted by various people wanting to get involved. The team grew and by September 2007 we had established the magazine in ten different locations. Faced with severe ﬂooding that year, most would have stopped at seven or eight locations, but we had promised ten, so it had to be ten! The business continued to grow and by managing to successfully raise enough investment, we were operating fully from a three ﬂoored building, with six full-time staff and 20 established locations, covering England, Scotland and Wales by 2010. The company had progressed massively. We were ﬁlming interviews with high calibre artists such as Tinie Tempah, we were taking advertising bookings from huge national clients, but most importantly of all, we were getting to as many students as physically possible. However still not taking one penny proﬁt, I decided to constantly re-invest anything we could to improve the services we had to offer. Realising the rapid development of the digital market and the potential it had for a company such as The Student Pocket
Guide, I decided to attend a Barclays Business seminar which focused on developing online presence. On arrival, placed on my seat, was an application for the Barclays ‘Take One Small Step’ competition, which aimed to give entrepreneurs across Great Britain the help they needed to boost their business idea. Amongst the thousands of entries received, The Student Pocket Guide was shortlisted to the Eastern region ﬁnals with the public deciding the nine regional winners over a period of one month. Realising that this opportunity was potentially life changing, I decided to stop everything I was doing and focus on getting The Student Pocket Guide to win the prize! So our promotion campaign began. We printed and distributed 15,000 ﬂyers, whilst promoting ourselves on Facebook and Twitter using our current student database to raise awareness. Businesses we had worked with over the years backed us, as did our local Liberal Democrats MP, Simon Wright. Always thinking outside the box, I wanted to go that extra mile and decided to produce a short movie to generate viral attention. A battle between Darth Vader and Ryu, two iconic characters from Star Wars and Street Fighter, was subsequently ﬁlmed, and within one week was viewed a staggering 50,000 times! Not bad at all.
Ryu Vs Darth Vader ﬁght scene. To watch this video go to Student Pocket Guide’s YouTube channel.
Consequently, we are now receiving a £50,000 investment from Barclays, which we will use to develop our digital and online presence, so watch this space! I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who voted, to all that have helped me and my business get as far as we have, to Barclays for offering such an amazing prize and recognition you could only dream about, to the students and businesses for making this business viable and to the many potential employers that did not employ me! I hope this story inspires you to follow your dreams and shows that with a positive mindset you really can achieve whatever you put your mind to. Lesson three: perseverance is incompatible with failure!
Voting soon closed and there was nothing else we could do but wait. The award ceremony came around in no time and after an evening which felt like an eternity, The Student Pocket Guide emerged victorious! Our efforts had paid off. To ﬁnd out more about the Barclays ‘Take One Small Step’ competition go to: www.takeonesmallstep.co.uk
Barclays student current account â€“ voted best by students To find out more, talk to a member of our team today.
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A FRESH FISH IN A BIG POND Chances are, aside from a few holidays with your friends, this will be the ﬁrst time you’ve ever lived away from home for an extended period of time. Going to university as a fresher and branching out away from your parents is a hugely exciting (and terrifying) prospect. It’s a cliché, but you’ll ﬁnd things out about yourself you never knew before, there will be an adjustment period while you settle into your surroundings. Never fear – The SPG is here to guide you through your ﬁrst weeks as a fresher.
The big one, first and foremost. Your university degree is not like anything you will have ever experienced before in your educational life. Up until now, you have been spoon fed everything. Look at college as a stepping stone – this is a step up. • No parents to motivate you/drag you out of bed. It’s a bit of a shock to the system when you find out that no one is going to write a letter to your parents if you don’t show up for class. It’s empowering, but beware, you’re finally getting treated like an adult, but you’re also expected to act like one. Miss too many classes and you’ll be getting familiar with terms such as disciplinary hearings and module expulsion! • Research. In college you are told what to read as part of your secondary reading, where to find the research and what to do with it. This is not the case in university. With some degrees you’ll find you have less contact hours – this is great because you have fewer classes but it also means that you need to be disciplined with your self-study time. You do your own research, decide on your own topics to cover and which references of your research you’re going to use. There’s a reason first year doesn’t count – it’s so that you can adjust to the demands of your degree! • You’ll be expected to work on your own initiative – there are no teachers chasing you up to tell you to do the work. If your time management skills are dire then this is the time for them to improve.
You’ll be living in halls of residence or uni accommodation, away from home. You may find you’ll have the greatest flat
ever – the group will instantly click, find things in common, and generally have an outstanding time. However, most commonly, these things take time. Don’t panic, don’t be shy, and do be patient. Make sure you try to make friends outside of your flat-mates through the societies you join, but also make sure that you get the right balance and don’t end up neglecting your flat-mates. Be considerate and respectful of other people’s beliefs and property – every flat usually has a nightmare flat-mate – just make sure it’s not you. • Some of the best nights you can have as a fresher are with your flatmates. Whether it’s a corridor sleepover, a group takeaway or a movie night, you’re living with these people for at least a year – and you may choose to carry on living with some of them for the next few years. Some of the best friends you’ll make will be through university – treat them how you’d like to be treated. • Clean up after yourself! Again, there are no parents to nag you to wash up after you’ve cooked. It may be the case that in your flat you’ll all get together once a fortnight to blitz the mountain of dirty plates but if the general consensus seems to be wash up after you’ve cooked, make sure you do it. Otherwise, you can be sure a flatmate will start nagging you: you’ll end up resenting them for harassing you, and they’ll end up resenting you for having to chase you up on it.
No more freebies from your personal chef (aka Mum), I’m afraid. You’ll need to learn a few simple recipes for the sake of your sanity and the sake of your diet – ready meals can only take you so far. In the weeks leading up to your departure you should try and cook for your family once a week for practice – it’ll be
appreciated, even if the feedback isn’t! It’s a good idea to invest in a couple of cheap cookbooks for students to keep your cooking varied and low-budget that way you won’t get bored so quickly of the same old stir-fry.
It may be the case that you’ve never received such a large lump sum as the first instalment of your loan – the temptation is there to go and spend the majority of it on luxuries rather than necessities (been there, done that). Budgeting is such an essential thing to do, get used to it, because you’re going to have to do it for the next three years. Set yourself a weekly spending limit and withdraw it out in cash – it’s all too easy to walk up to the payment counter with your card and your overdraft, and it’s all too easy to lose track of how much you’re spending. (Last three transactions: McDonalds, McDonalds, McDonalds. Been there, done that too). Be realistic with your budgeting and allow yourself some more money for freshers’ week. Don’t be overambitious and allocate yourself a tenner for food for the week and forty for booze – you’ll never stick to it if all you’ve got in the cupboard is pasta and tuna and you’ve got a serious case of the beer munchies.
Your social life:
Unless you’re Justin Bieber your social life is going to take a dramatic upturn in freshers’ week. You’ll be meeting new people and forgetting their names about five to ten times a day. It’ll be amazing – but remember to keep a cool head and be you. It’s all well and good getting absolutely smashed to calm the nerves and lower the inhibitions, but you don’t want to be gaining an unfavourable reputation in your first few weeks. Just be wary about overdoing it. • It’s completely natural to be feeling overwhelmed by the prospect of living and talking with complete strangers. Even the most confident, outgoing people find themselves outside their comfort zone during their first weeks of university. There is no right or wrong way to break the ice: it comes naturally. Everybody is in the same boat as you, no matter how at ease they seem. • Tickets for events: Most freshers do one of two things: they panic and buy all of the tickets for every single event because they don’t want to miss out on anything, or they’re so disorganised they don’t buy anything and every event sells out. Don’t worry too much about buying every single ticket – if you commit to every night you may find you’re so knackered from the night before, the last thing you want to do is go out again, especially if it’s an event you weren’t keen on in the first place. To make matters worse, your flatmates are all staying in for drinks and a takeaway. It’s a good idea to get in touch with your future flatmates over Facebook, if possible, to see what tickets they’ve bought.
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Sam Watts Mt. Kilimanjaro Congratulations to Sam Watts, this terms winner of SPG on Tour for this worthy winning collection taken at Mt. Kilimanjaro. Sam walks away with a cracking digital camera kit worth a whopping £429 courtesy of Verbatim and GE. Prize: GE x500 camera RRP £129.99 GE DV1 Full HD RRP £79.99 Verbatim SDHC x 2 RRP £39.99 Verbatim Mediashare 2TB RRP £179.99
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SPG EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW
What have you been up to? I’ve been in Ibiza all summer. I flew back yesterday and went straight to a TV show. I’m flying back to Ibiza Monday. That’s my 11th and last visit of the summer. I did Majorca and Ibiza in the same night on Tuesday. Can you talk us through a typical day from start to ﬁnish? Wake up, go to the gym every morning if I can or for a run at least. Usually a photo shoot, or a few interviews in the morning. Then either rehearsals or a radio show in the afternoon or maybe another photo shoot. Then evenings are either a DJ set, a club PA, a live show or a festival. Put it this way, I’m working everyday from about 10am until about midnight. Some mornings I’ll have to get up earlier if there’s a breakfast show, about 7am. It’s been another massive year, with the release of your 3rd album, a 3rd headline tour, festivals galore, and a number one single. When is the Example juggernaut going to slow down, if ever? Well I haven’t had a holiday for a couple of years and I’ve probably only had about three or four days off this year including weekends.
So I am thinking maybe I’ll slow down in January and I’ll have a couple of weeks off. My manager said I can go to Australia for a few weeks and chill. But as soon as I come back to the UK in January I’ve got another single out and I have got a European tour which is about 20 gigs. Then I’ve got Australia and the Far East and my record label want me to write another album for next year, which will be my fourth album in five years. Is that a lot of pressure for you? No, I find it really easy to write. I wrote this third album in six months. I’ve just got to be in the zone. So long as I have got inspiration and all my inspiration comes from real life, so if I’m going through sh*t in everyday life in terms of relationships or partying and living it up excessively, then I find it really easy to write. It just relies upon producers giving me their best beats. Can you talk to us about the single you made with Laidback Luke ‘Natural Disaster’... I got sent the beat which was incredible and I thought “I need this on my album”. They told me “Laidback Luke has already got it as a single as an instrumental, so you can put it on the
Interview by Nathan Wadlow
album but it will have to be Laidback Luke Vs Example”. I was like “that’s fine” and I wrote the song in about an hour, recorded it in an hour, then sent it to Luke in Holland and he finished it off. I suppose what you hear is the fruits of our labour, it is what it is. It’s quite a special track. I think it’s going to be huge at festivals and in clubs. The 4th track on the album, ‘The Way’, produced by Faithless, deﬁnitely has that epic festival feel to it, which is found in so many of their tracks. Is that where you want to be in the future; creating and playing an epic sound dominating dance music? I don’t produce stuff so I am always going to have to rely on other producers. Certainly Faithless were seen as the kings of the dance arena, or of the main stage dance act. The Chemical Brothers are brilliant. Chase and Status are brilliant.
Essentially those guys are producers. They rely on visuals, amazing lights or featured artists to make their shows work. Whereas with me, I don’t have any featured artists or visuals to make my shows work. It’s a band and we play like a unit. So I suppose in that sense I am more similar to Faithless in terms of drums, guitar, keyboards, lead vocalists, front man. I am really inspired by them. I supported them on their arena tour and I kind of feel like they have handed over the baton to me to continue their good work. If they are willing to produce for me on my album then they obviously like what I am doing. Who have you most enjoyed working with producer wise? I’m blessed; I have been working with all of the best people in the world. Chase and Status, Nero, Skream, Dirty South, Laidback Luke, Faithless. They are all different. Some are more perfectionists than others. Some people work really quickly. Some people work slowly. Some people like to sit in the studio and get drunk. Other people want to be completely sober and done by 6pm, so everyone works differently. It was fun working with Skream because he is a really good mate of mine and
we recorded the tracks in half a day and then went out and got really pissed. Then you work with people like Faithless and Laidback Luke, you record with them and then you don’t see them again for another three or six months. Did you have a feeling that your single ‘Changed The Way You Kiss Me’ was going places, or was it a complete shock to see yourself at top spot? I knew it would be massive but I don’t think you can ever predict if you will be number one because you don’t know who else is out that week. Some weeks you are up against Lady Gaga or Katy Perry and they are always going to outsell everyone in the UK because they are so massive. So it’s kind of hard to second guess where you are gonna go. I had the same feeling after ‘Change The Way You Kiss Me’, as I did after ‘Kick Starts’. As soon as I heard it I knew it was going to be huge. In your ﬁrst album, you only sing in one of the choruses, whereas now in the third you’re singing throughout it. How have you found this transition and what was behind the decision to sing more? I only originally started singing because I was demoing choruses for other people. On my first album I sung the chorus for ‘Me and Mandy’ and then got someone else to come in and sing it for me. And like you say, on the rest of the album I only sung the chorus for one song. On the second album I started demoing more and more choruses with the expectation that other people would come in and sing them. Then the label turned around and said “No you don’t need to re-sing them, your voice sounds good”. So that gave me confidence to sing
more and on this third album I have sung everything. So, what’s next? I’ve got this arena tour in April, so I wanna sell that out. I think once you get to the arena level, that’s a huge statement. More European festivals and Australia. I am not really bothered about America yet. It’s such a huge beast to tackle. You have to give up a year of your life to achieve anything over there. What’s the best festival you have played at? They are all good, they are all very different. Sometimes you can be in a tent late at midnight and have an amazing vibe there like at Big Chill. Or you can do something like at V Festival where you’re on at 4 o’clock in the afternoon but 50,000 people are bouncing. The response we got at V this year was amazing, we had the biggest crowd they have ever seen on the second stage. We had three times as many people as Pendulum. It was basically a mosh pit with 50,000 people. It was nuts! For more info on Example go to: www.trythisforexample.com
TICKET COMPETITION! WIN 2 tickets to see Example (at your nearest venue) plus signed goodies! To enter this competition visit: www.thestudentpocketguide.com Like us on Facebook for up-to-date competitions and giveaways.
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W E INTERVIE EXCLUSIV
New band on the block The Vaccines have certainly hit the ground running with their highly acclaimed debut album ‘What Did You Expect From The Vaccines?’. We catch up with bass player Árni Hjörvar to talk about the band’s rapid rise, and the story behind new single, Norgaard... It’s a good’un!
You guys came into this year with a lot of expectation on your shoulders. Zane Lowe was quick to sing your praise with the release of ‘If You Wanna’, claiming it was the hottest record in the world at the time. How did you guys deal with the hype? I don’t think we’ve dealt with it in any way. The thing about this band is, before anyone had heard any of our material, even before Zane Lowe ever played it, we had already written every single thing that we put on the record so we didn’t have
Interview by Nathan Wadlow
to write under any sort of pressure. We’ve had to grow as a live band under pressure, but we just focus on the task at hand and try to meet our own expectations rather than anyone else’s. We’ve done that so far and we’ll see how it goes for the rest of the year. The album itself, ‘What Did You Expect From The Vaccines?’ is brilliant. Where did your inspirations come from? Thank you. We’re all fans of direct and instant music, whether that’s 80’s hardcore, 60’s pop or rockabilly. Generally music that is really straight to the point, with cleverly used clichés if you like. I don’t think the
formula for pop songs has been perfected and I don’t think it ever will; therefore there’s space for people to experiment with it. It’s not necessarily what is played, it’s how it’s played.. The album has an interesting mix of tracks, no better epitomised than by comparing the ﬁrst and last songs. Was it a conscious decision to include an array of different length tracks and sub-genres? Yeah, I don’t know how conscious it was to mix up styles necessarily, but I think we wanted to stay true to the songs. The songs sit where we want them to be, for example ‘Wreckin’ Bar’ is a song that doesn’t need to be any
longer than it is, whereas ‘Family Friend’ is different, it’s slow paced, and a bit of a builder, so it needs ﬁve minutes to go where it wants to go. We weren’t really thinking about the concept of the record as such, we wanted it to be a collection of our best songs and these just happened to be our best tracks at the time. We ﬁnd it quite funny when people have only listened to ‘Wreckin Bar’, and only see us as a punk band, which is true to an extent, but they haven’t heard the rest. You have a new single out at the moment. Can you tell us a little about it? Yep the track is called ‘Norgaard’. It’s a song about a Danish model, called Norgaard! The story is that Justin went on a double date with a friend of his a long time ago. One of the girls on the date was Norgaard and when Justin went home alone, his friend got off with the two girls, so he wrote a slightly annoyed song about her. Funny thing is we’ve got a relationship with her now, because she was aware of this for a very long time. She came to see us in New York in January and ever since then she comes to our
shows every once in a while. We even got her to be in the video for it. I think she’s very happy that someone decided to write a song about her, I think it does a lot for the ego of a model! Are you guys working on a record for next year? Well our immediate plans have changed quite dramatically as we’ve had to cancel a lot of shows due to Justin’s health. It just means it gives us some more space to work on new material, so we’re deﬁnitely in that mindset at the moment, and we’ll keep doing that until we’re back on the road. So hopefully we’ll be able to debut quite a lot of new material in our headline tour very soon. Obviously in recent years, there’s been a massive rise in electronic music and consequently it’s dominating the charts. Do you guys feel like you are ﬂying the ﬂag for guitar music? Absolutely there has. It’s a really valid question, but I just don’t think of it that way, and I don’t know who does so it’s really difﬁcult to answer. I think guitar music, just like any other music is in its absolute prime at
the moment, but you just have to search for it because there are so many amazing bands around; they’re just shying away from writing anything instantly accessible because pop has become a bad word, which I disagree with. Instead of ﬂying the ﬂag for guitar music we’re mostly just trying to write some good pop music, not being representatives of anything. The charts don’t bother me at all because they’re cyclical, they’re always dominated by something that’s hot, and after a while it’s been diluted so badly something else takes over. There’s always going to be something new and I’ve got no idea whether it’s going to be guitar music again but as long as there is some sort of regeneration in the charts I don’t care. Music aside, how would you describe the personality of The Vaccines? Haha. Slightly neurotic. I think the whole band is slightly bi-polar. Who would be the most likely to throw a tantrum? I think it depends on what time of day it is, or where we are in the world. I think it’s probably our tour
manager, he shouts a lot every once in a while! The band generally doesn’t shout a lot though. We took inspiration from the Arctic Monkeys when we went on the road with them. They are super friendly, four albums in, have been doing it for years and years and are still best mates. It’s important to keep that element. I think we learnt to respect each other a bit more than we did a year ago. For more info visit: www.thevaccines.co.uk Scan this QR Code with your smart phone to read the full interview
Bin the baked beans.
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Now you’ve arrived in a new city – don’t forget about looking after your health as well as your studies. The ﬁrst thing you should do is register with your GP. Doctors can advise and treat conditions which just won’t go away. They are the gateway to the NHS and can also sign post you to other services depending on your need. So don’t leave it until there is something wrong, contact your local practice and register now. You can view which GP practices are closest to you and which are taking on new NHS patients by visiting NHS Choices at http://www.nhs.uk/. There are lots of different ways people can access the right NHS service and make sure they get the right treatment, at the right time and place that is convenient for you. The Choose Well campaign uses a colour coded thermometer to link your symptoms to which NHS service you should access. Self care is key so keep your medicine cabinet fully stocked to help you deal with hangovers, a sore throat, or a cough. If you have a minor ailment like a painful cough, cold, headache or diarrhea, you can visit your community pharmacy who can prescribe you over the counter medicine without you needing to make an appointment. For cuts, sprains, itches and strains use an NHS Walk in Centre, NHS Urgent Centre or NHS Minor Injuries Centre. A&E and 999 are emergency services which should only be used when people are badly injured or showing the symptoms of critical illness. If you are unwell or unsure of what service to access then call NHS Direct on 0845 46 47 for absolutely any questions about health. By calling you leave busy NHS services to help those most in need.
Choose Well Thermometer
Red Is an emergency, go to A&E or call 999. Accident and Emergency departments should only be used in a critical or life-threatening situation. A&E departments provide emergency care for people who show the symptoms of serious illness or are badly injured.
Orange Emergency Medical Centre. Adults or children who have minor injuries, for example suspected fractures or scalds and minor burns, can attend a minor injuries unit.
Yellow For a persistent illness or injury that will not go away, make an appointment with your local GP.
Light Green A visit to the local pharmacy will help. As well as dispensing prescriptions, pharmacists provide a range of services related to speciﬁc health issues and can advise on minor ailments such as colds, skin conditions and allergies. Other services include emergency contraception, truss ﬁttings and incontinence supplies.
Dark Green NHS Direct can help by giving advice. For internet information on all aspects of health and health care, go to www.nhs.uk. It allows you to check your symptoms, check hundreds of conditions and treatments and ﬁnd telephone numbers and addresses for most NHS organisations, including hospitals and GPs. For conﬁdential health advice and information around the clock, call NHS Direct on 0845 46 47.
Blue Self care and includes coughs and colds. Self-care is the best choice to treat very minor illnesses and injuries. A range of common winter illness and injuries can be treated at home simply by combining a well-stocked medicine cabinet with plenty of rest.
COSTS THAT SLIP UNDER THE RADAR Budgeting isn’t always as easy as one, two, three. Many little costs out there can sneak up on your unsuspecting self. Rent, food and bills aside, we’ve compiled a list of cheeky devils that try to catch you out!
D E N R A W E B
TV LICENCE – Living on campus doesn’t mean that everything comes for free and this certainly applies to what has to be an absolute necessity for a student, a TV licence. Even if you don’t have a TV, you can still get caught out by streaming live on your laptops, which can result in a maximum ﬁne of £1000! BBC iPlayer, 4oD and the like are ﬁne however. LIBRARY FINES – I may be completely right in saying this: no-one budgets for library ﬁnes. However, using my telepathic senses I can guarantee that most of you reading this will at some point accumulate a rather nasty amount of ﬁnes in your college/university career (naughty, naughty). CLUBS, SOCIETY and GYMS – Social and physical activity is pretty essential in ensuring that you are looking after yourself and having a good time. Unfortunately, some of these pleasantries in your life come at a cost. Clubs, societies and gyms may require signing-on fees. Though often relatively cheap, will still require some form of regular payment. PRINTING COSTS – Printing costs though comparatively small to the rest of your outgoings still add up, and you’d be surprised by your yearly total. An easy way to go about this is to keep a piggy bank (maybe an old can) for your loose change. Having a stash of coins ready will make your life that much easier for your mad dashes to the printer when those dreaded deadlines are approaching! COURSE DAYS OUT and FIELD TRIPS – Most outings will be completely voluntary, however there are in fact some courses that have compulsory attendance for ﬁeld trips, or days out. A good way to go about this is by thoroughly checking out your module booklets, which should have details of any compulsory or voluntary outings. There are of course uni trips and holidays available purely for your entertainment. If you think that going away with your new mates appeals to you it may make sense putting away a couple of hundred early doors so if the opportunity arises you won’t be the one missing out!
TRAVEL – Not all freshers will live in halls, and even some of you that do, may ﬁnd yourselves having to travel from one end of the uni to the other to attend those essential lectures! Public transport has been on the rise of late, so be prepared to spend a few extra quid a week for those study commutes, and of course the nights out in town. BOOKS and ARTICLES – Plugging away at coursework can be a bit of a nightmare, especially if you cannot ﬁnd the essential book or article that will give you the edge over your classmates. Libraries are usually very useful and provide an excellent service, however if your desired book is not in stock you may have to brace yourself for a visit to Amazon or eBay! The same applies with online articles, with some websites requiring payments for online documents. NEWSPAPERS and MAGAZINES – Now being a student you have a responsibility to keep up-to-date with what is going on in the world, as you my friend, are the future! Newspapers and magazines not only keep you up-to-date with goings on but can also signiﬁcantly help you on your course, providing you with the latest information and contemporary thought. Media students especially will have to get used to regular trips to the newsagents! LAUNDRY – You now no longer have the luxury of a personal maid, i.e. your mum or dad, which leaves you with the responsibility of washing your own clothes! It won’t be long before piles of dirty washing have amassed on your bedroom ﬂoor, probably alongside the week-old pizza boxes. When you eventually decide to make the trek to the laundry rooms, be prepared to spend a few extra pounds. HOUSING DEPOSIT – You may be venturing into halls now, but when the hectic year of campus life is over, for the majority of you the next step will be to ﬁnd your student digs. Universities will give you the help you need and point you in the right direction, however when you have found the perfect new ﬂat, you will need to place a holding deposit and then a ﬁnal deposit when you move in. It may seem like a million miles away but you will need to start looking for your second year accommodation in early spring.
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Photography by Carolyn Djanogly
STEPHEN MERCHANT Interview by Nathan Wadlow
BAFTA Award winner in 2002, ‘03 and ‘04. Emmy and British Comedy Award winner in 2006, followed by a WGA Award in 2007, this man needs no introducing. With a new comedy series out in October, and about to embark on his ﬁrst UK stand-up tour, we squeeze in a few minutes with the one and only Stephen Merchant. (Did I mention he was a Broadcasting Press Guild winner in 2002 and ‘03?) To a lot of people you and Ricky Gervais come as a pair, possibly to your annoyance, I don’t know! But in the autumn of this year you are about to embark on your ﬁrst UK stand-up tour, titled rather amusingly ‘Hello Ladies!’ Could you tell us a little about what the show entails? My life has always revolved around my hunt for a mate and the show explores every aspect of that, from teenage hopelessness to the time I got asked to leave a wedding. I also go into detail about what a woman can expect when we’re on a date. For instance: yes, I’ve made some money but I don’t see anything wrong with still going to Pizza Hut with a two-for-one voucher. What’s wrong with that? A lot of ladies think that’s stingey but they’re wrong. What they should be thinking is, ‘This is the man I should raise a family with because he’s sensible with his money’. Think about it, ladies. It’s Darwinian. You shouldn’t mate with the guy who splashes his cash at a Michelin-starred restaurant; you should mate with the man who cuts out discount vouchers from the paper!
WHAT MAKES YOU LAUGH?
“Woody Allen. Eric Mo people on YouTube fal over. The usual.” What were your reasons for deciding to do stand up? Originally I did stand-up after I left university and I was a finalist in a few comedy competitions. I was good enough to get paid, I used to gig regularly, but somewhere along the line I lost interest. Once ‘The Oﬃce’ took off, it just seemed easier not to do it. I didn’t get enough of a kick from performing to warrant driving up and down the motorway to gigs, eating Ginsters in service stations at midnight. I used to look at Ricky doing stand-up and think, ‘Why’s he bothering? It’s so much effort.’ Then I just woke up one day and I had the itch again. I felt I’d never really nailed stand-up. So I started doing five or ten minute slots here and there and I’ve been pottering around the circuit for a few years now. This tour is the result of that itch. Now as we all know you and Ricky have been working on a new comedy sitcom, ‘Life’s Too Short’, due to hit our screens very soon. Can you tell us what it’s all about? ‘Life’s Too Short’ follows the fortunes of the actor Warwick Davis, playing a fictional version of himself, as he contends with a divorce, a failing career, a giant tax bill and being only three foot six inches. Warwick is exceptional in it, great at comedy and drama, tremendous at physical comedy as well. He throws himself
about with such abandon. I think people will be amazed at how good he is. We’ve used the fake documentary style again, because it’s so useful for comedy - it gives instant realism to every scene. And famous faces again pop up in it, including Liam Neeson and Sting. Ricky has promised that it will be his funniest work yet. How would you say your views compare? I’ll let you decide that – but there are certainly a lot of very funny scenes in it. We were laughing out loud on set, particularly at Warwick’s physical antics. He had to climb up a bookcase at one point, which had us crying. As with ‘Extras’, there are to be quite a few celebrity appearances, from big A-lister Johnny Depp, to the not so glamorous Keith Chegwin. How do you go about choosing the celebrities you want for the various episodes? Normally it stems from an idea we have for a particular sketch and then we start thinking about who would be the most interesting person to appear in it. So for instance someone like Liam Neeson is so sincere on screen that it’s fun to play with that image and have him saying absurd things in that incredibly earnest, deep voice he has.
Scan this QR Code with your smart phone to read the full interview.
Photography by Carolyn Djanogly
It’s common knowledge that Jonny Depp prefers to not watch himself on the big screen, or indeed at all! Apparently if he could brush his teeth without a mirror he would. Did you notice any other weird habits of his, or any sneaky peeks of him secretly looking at himself? No, and even if I did I wouldn’t tell you! Johnny was amazing, a gentleman. He totally threw himself into it and was happy to make a fool of himself. He did a lot of very funny improvisation. There’s a simple reason why he’s one of the world’s biggest movie stars: it’s because he’s brilliant. Now an obvious observation one could make would be the colossal diﬀerence in height between you and Warwick Davis. How did you ﬁnd it working with someone so much shorter than yourself? In an odd way I can relate to Warwick because I’ve also spent my life with people commenting on my size. It’s something else I discuss in the stand-up
show. Being very small or very tall impacts on the way people react to you. And like Warwick, I have diﬃculty with everyday objects in a different way. I can’t fit in certain cars, beds, clothes. It’s a living hell. Obviously ‘The Ricky Gervais Show’ and ‘An Idiot Abroad’ have been massive hits, due in part to the popularity of Karl Pilkington. Is he really an idiot? I don’t think so. If he’s an idiot then why do so many people relate to what he says? He has a unique take on the world and he’s very honest about what he feels about stuff. He’s not classically educated – he only got one GCSE, a D in history I think – but he stumbles across wisdom in his own way. We were talking once about how someone like Calum Best is only famous because of who his dad was. And Karl said “You could say the same about Jesus.” He’s absolutely right. Are there any more projects with him in the pipeline? There’s a second series of ‘An Idiot Abroad’, which starts very soon. This time we’ve made him choose a bucket list things to do before you die - and so he does things like travel to Alaska to whale-watch and to Australia to swim with dolphins. Of course, we’ve meddled a little as usual, so in Alaska he’s not on a luxury cruise ship, he’s on a working fishing trawler chopping live bait. And the dolphins turn out to be sharks. Business as usual basically. Having been at university yourself, what advice do you have for our readers who are just about to start student life? Enjoy it but don’t just spend all your time in the bar. When I was at uni I made short films, hosted a radio show and performed at the Edinburgh festival. You’ll never have that much free time again, so take advantage of it. Build up your CV. It will make life so much easier once you’re out in the real world. For tickets to Stephen’s ‘Hello Ladies’ tour go to: livenation.co.uk. The new series ‘Life’s Too Short’ will be aired on BBC2 in October.
niversity is sure to open your eyes to a whole new world of mischievous antics and bizarre banter, no better epitomised than by student pranks. Even if you fancied yourself as a bit of a Jonny Knoxville before, you may well be in for a treat when you arrive in halls and find yourself in the deep end of pranking perfection. As we were all students like you (once upon a time), we had a little sit down; reminisced about the great times we had and rummaged through as many examples of student pranks we could find. Having a little titter along the way, we concluded that this selection of classic examples were worthy of being published. Enjoy! Creamy Classic The classic whipped cream prank! This was one we particularly enjoyed and involves a sleeping student getting it! So... the sleeping student, dreaming away, half-consciously notices what can be nothing else but an irritating fly landing on their face. But no, it is their mates tickling their nose with a feather, having just planted a lovely pile of whipped cream on the sleeping victimâ€™s hand. The hand moves in to swipe it away, but OOPS! Face is covered in whipped cream, and mates are crying with laughter having seen their brilliant plan prevail. Classic!
Talcum Tornado This one is for the girls. Imagine the scene, an excited student heads to the shower, buzzing at the prospect of going out and maybe finding that guy sheâ€™s been plucking up the courage to talk to! Whilst singing away to her favourite Jessie J tune, her sneaky flatmates fill her hairdryer with some talcum powder, carefully removing any dusty evidence. Excited student returns to her bedroom, goes to dry her hair, then BOOM! We have a case of ghost face. Harsh, but very funny. (Very, very funny).
Newspaper Nightmare We found many fine examples of bedroom banter, however this one wins hands down purely on the basis of commitment! It involves one student attending a day of lectures, their bedroom door left open, mates in the know and a serious amount of newspaper. Mates armed with newspaper enter the vacant room and quite literally wrap everything in sight. Walls, bed, chair, laptop, books, wardrobe, pencils, shoes, guitar, iPod. Everything. Student returns after a hard day of study, and WOW! They cannot believe their eyes.
Toilet Tragedy A big toilet nightmare. Hilarious for those carrying out the prank, less so for those it happens to. Unsuspecting student goes to the toilet, ready to relieve some bladder pressure, but oh dear, it all ends in disaster. The aim was there, but what went wrong? Then they realise. The toilet now has a second lid, with the new addition being of the tightly sealed and wrinkle free cling film variety. NICE! (Mates probably giggling outside to shouts of swearing).
Ever been pranked or been the prankster!? Share your stories with us so we can tell the world!
@The Student Pocket Guide @TheSPG
Illustrations by www.stephenong.co.uk
Wallpapered my brothers bedroom door.
Super-glued a friend’s Rang up a friend pretending to PS2 and controllers to a be a radio presenter, and claimed table in his room. they were live on air and had won a competition.
Friend was in lectures and left their key behind, so we turned everything upside-down in her room. Hid loads of women’s underwear in my ﬂatmates room, knowing he was bringing back a girl he was dating.
Shaved my mates eyebrows off after he had fallen asleep.
Put an OXO cube in my mates shower head!
Stole my ﬂat mate’s bed and put it in my room. I then got in it, took a photo and sent it to him.
I was babysitting and challenged the kids to see who get changed into their PJs the quickest, after I had sewn up the arms and legs!
Cling ﬁlmed the whole of a friend’s bed and mattress, so they had to cut it off to get in!
Going somewhere special? Don’t forget to take your copy of SPG and make sure you get some snaps. We’ll give a top notch digital bundle, worth a whopping £429 for the best entry. Send your entries to: firstname.lastname@example.org
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Interview by Nathan Wadlow
From feature vocalist to established star, Katy Bâ€™s dramatic rise has been nothing short of impressive. Adding natural glamour and new identity to dance music, she has had three UK top ten singles with her debut album receiving high praise throughout the industry. After picking up nominations for this yearâ€™s Mercury Prize and MOBO Awards, it would seem further success is on the horizon for the Peckham princess. We catch up with her, just before her main stage appearance at Creamfields.
Simply wearing grey joggers and Nike pumps, Katy still carries with her the aura of a star in the making. She walks past us and heads into her dressing room, whilst we stand outside amongst the other press, waiting to be called in...
Photo by Je
We are greeted by her manager, who with her striking London accent introduces us to Katy. “Hello, I’ve got alcohol hands”, she says timidly, holding out her palm with a blob of hand gel. We stand around not really knowing what’s going on, people are walking in and out, no seats are available and there’s a guy in the corner playing a trumpet. Katy tries to work out what to do, but her soft voice is quite easily drowned out. Eventually she is sat down, the interview begins. “Keep it real quick yeah Katy?” her manager slips in. “Festivals, festivals, festivals”, she explains when asked about her summer. “Glastonbury was great, Lounge on the Farm was really good; that was a nice smaller one”. It was quite clear to hear the festival season expressed in her voice; a breathy tiredness which epitomised a relentless summer for so many artists.
“I’ve been to Ibiza which was great as well”, she continues. “One night I ended up playing at Space instead of Amnesia which was good fun. I’m really excited about tonight though. I like Creamfields because it’s specific to dance music, I can’t wait to engage with the crowd”. The festival environment however is far from her musical roots. Since the age of 16 Katy has frequented herself in the club scene, in both the partying and performing sense, which is evident in her highly acclaimed album, ‘On a Mission’. Her lyrics touch on the different elements of clubbing culture, from the highs and the lows, to falling in love with men and music. It was where she made her name, featuring with the likes of DJ NG and later Magnetic Man, until her breakthrough with the release of her debut single in August 2010. The dance and club scene has since become the habitat which she has made her own. For this reason you could be forgiven if you thought that Katy found performing at festivals a contrasting experience, yet this is not the case. “I think it’s quite similar, like the kind of vibe going to a club or a festival is the same, people are there to enjoy themselves and get away from their everyday lives. The only difference is people are drunk at 3pm rather than 3am!” There’s a pause whilst her beautician vigorously applies some make up. “The first festival I went to was Glastonbury when I was 18, but I was actually there performing with Brit School, playing soul sets, Latin sets, African pop, kind of doing the graveyard shifts. But yeah, I’ve loved it ever since then”. The more we spoke to Katy, the more I sensed how straight talking she is, again, something reflected in her music. No pretension, just honesty and personality,
something of a rarity with popular music today. Her music though goes far beyond honest lyrics. It is down to artists like her that have shaped and evolved dance music into the genre that dominates modern charts. Far from sticking to one genre, Katy B has added glamour and popular presence to the grimier sub-cultures of dance, a great achievement considering the miscellany of influences she has included in her album. From the house and funky grooves of ‘Power on Me’, to the raw dubstep of ‘Go Away’, she has managed to entwine various areas of dance into one succinct album. “I think the great thing about dance music is that it’s always changing and developing. That’s why I like writing dance music, you never know where it’s going to go; it’s exciting”. Aside from making music Katy briefly considered acting when she was younger, destined it seems to eventually end up in the public limelight in one way or another. “I think when I was younger I wanted to do any kind of performing”, she explains. “I played the piano from a young age and always had some sort of activity going on”. Probably surprising to some, she even auditioned for the part of Hermione in the Harry Potter movies, though she is quick to put down the hype surrounding the speculation. “When people say that to me like, ‘Oh my God just imagine?!’, I just think I was only one of 2000 girls, and didn’t even get through the first round so it was never really a case that it could of been me!” And to be honest, all of us are glad. Katy B has emerged as one of the most exciting artists over the last year, effortlessly carrying with her a vibrant individuality which has set her apart from the autotuned robotics of modern pop. For more info go to: katyonamission.com
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The iron budget
but little biased, our graduate may seem a l uni item in tip ia r nt is th se ly es ost m scounts, 2 fo h di 5t t e Now obvious en th e special stud was listed as th p f. hi uf rs do st g be we vin em sa m what azing money asons are in ebies and am survey. The re od deals, fre fo d an a m 1’s cine The iron budget
You know this, basically it’s taking out just the amount of cash you plan to spend and NO cards. This safe-guards your evening budget against drink logic and casts it in iron - it cannot be broken.
ur credit card Freeze yo it, in water, in your freezer. This guards against
Freeze your credit card
We mean physically freeze any large impulse purchases you don’t need. You can get to your card, but not immediately. The more consideration time you think you need, the bigger the ice cube you should freeze it in.
Work where you shop
Work where you shop
We did a little investigation into staff discounts recently and the best places to get a job for these are The Body Shop, Republ ic, New Look, Lush and Greggs (yes!) - all 50%.
. Simple KISS - Keep. It
KISS - Keep. It. Simple. Stupid
list, the most effective; make a shopping Simple money saving ideas can be drink bike, your ride , lunch ed pack a buy supermarket own brands, make here but we forget this. We’ve written them before you go out. We know this, them. mber reme help to word ess busin and given you a silly
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Always ask ‘Do you give a student discount?’. If the answer’s ‘no’, ask ‘Can you..?’ That things are rough for students has been a big part of the recession stor y - the cuts, debts, job market. Anyone who doesn’t feel sorr y for you and give you a discount is either asle ep or a total meanie.
of emotions. Whether Starting student life can be a mixed bag excitement, or even both, with ing buzz es, nerv with ed riddl e you’r ter in your life is about there will be a realisation that a new chapously essential, so what obvi is ds frien new to commence. Making of the numerous clubs better way to do so than by joining onegreat way of meeting like a It’s ers. oﬀ tute insti your ties socie and rience, will be sure minded people, and speaking from expe ly, get involved! simp e Quit life. y ersit to enhance your univ You could be forgiven for thinking that sports teams would be limited to the mainstream games, however, you could not be more wrong. Institutes nationwide oﬀer an abundance of sporting variety, and with £10 million worth of investment this year, are actively encouraging more and more students to get involved. Brighton Uni for example have secured £180,602 for a new sports scheme, Project Active 8, which rewards its students for attending sports sessions with a loyalty card programme. It covers eight sports, including netball, beach sports, squash and table tennis, with rewards including discounts to the various facilities the university has to offer. So, not only can you benefit from the health and social aspects, you could save a few quid as well. See it as a free beer on a night out!
Be sure to check out college/university websites, or visit the BUSC at www.bucs.org.uk to find out what your chosen destination has to offer. You can represent your university, campus, college, or even your beloved subject. From ten-pin bowling in Birmingham, to shinty in Edinburgh, (and if korfball is your thing then Cambridge was certainly a good choice for you!) there is more than likely a sport to suit you. Standards are no barrier either, you don’t have to be the next Cristiano Ronaldo of your sport to take part, so don’t be put oﬀ if your tekkers are somewhat questionable, there will be teams that cater for you. Here’s a fact for you: 58% of Team GB at the Beijing Olympics in 2008 came through higher education, such as gold medal winner Amy Williams. Fancy yourself as a bit of a wizz-kid? You never know... Of course, not all social groups lie within sports. Colleges and universities offer a vast range of clubs and societies that are sure to match some of your personal interests. Whether you are politically minded, a bit of a foodie, or just simply want to have a laugh, there will be something to suit you, and you can join as many as you wish! See it as an opportunity not only to meet people with whom you can relate to, but also as an opportunity to further a hobby or interest, or simply broaden your horizons and try something new. You will certainly be spoilt for choice! From the weird and wacky, such as Bournemouth University’s Lego Appreciation Society, to the more serious and sophisticated, for instance Bolton’s Student Labour Party, your institute will oﬀer you a wonderful selection of varied options. And, if you cannot find something suitable, why not start your own? Most clubs and societies are organised and run by students, with new volunteers constantly welcomed and needed. Not only can you enjoy what your chosen club has on offer, whether it be a day out to the beach or a visit from an industry expert, you can also get involved in the running and promotional aspects, which can certainly boost up your CV when applying for jobs. Transferable skills in organisation and events planning for example are all there for the taking, so why not show some initiative and put yourself out there! The experience will do nothing but benefit you when you make the scary transition from your manic student life to your chosen profession. (It soon comes around)...
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Market Manners Written by Nathan Wadlow
Markets are the haven of quality produce and for many of us they are an untapped resource. Helping bring life to towns and cities, they oﬀer so much more than simply a place where you can do your weekly shop. With over 500 farmers markets nationwide there really is no excuse for us not to be doing our bit, and the funny thing is, if you remember your manners and haggle, you may actually get yourself a better deal! The whole experience of a bustling morning market is sure to add an edge to your weekly itinerary, oﬀering something diﬀerent to your standard shopping ventures. Not only do markets provide us with an abundance of high quality produce, sourced locally and fresher than any other outlet, but also a chance to interact with the producers themselves, so you can be sure about how and where your vegetables are grown and meat produced. This also bestows the opportunist in you the chance to barter! Trying to knock a quid or two oﬀ a block of cheese at your local shop would surely be met with disapproval, so remember your p’s and q’s and hit the market! However, I will say this: Bob’s been on the veg stall for nearly 40 years and has seen it all before, he’s no fool, so you’ll deﬁnitely need your A game.
Haggling aside, we all know that cash is a little short these days, but ﬁnancially you may well surprise yourself spending a Saturday morning cruising around your local market. Whether it’s veg, ﬁsh or meat you are after, you certainly don’t need to beg poor old Bob to get yourselves a decent price. Much of what is sold at markets actually comes at a cheaper rate than your local superstores and mini-marts around the corner. Advantages such as cutting out the middleman, direct selling, and reduction in travel and packaging costs, all contribute to producers being able to nudge their prices down for you. A winning combination; great quality for less of a cost.
The beneﬁts don’t stop there either. When buying from a market you can feel good about yourself in the knowledge that you have done your bit for your local community. Markets have an ability to bring people from all backgrounds and age groups together, encouraging social interaction particularly between rural and urban communities. They stimulate local economic development, support local business, keeping money within the community, which is surely nothing but positive. With current economic troubles the world we live in today is rapidly losing sight of its local businesses, which unfortunately has had severe eﬀects on the identity of our local communities. So, I’ll leave you with this: Go and see Bob (he’ll be there through rain or shine), remember your manners, and haggle away! To ﬁnd your local farmers market check out:
EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW So your debut album, ‘Last Smoke Before The Snowstorm’ is out now, can you talk us through it? The album has just come out, ten tracks. I wrote them over the course of three or four years, so I had quite a lot to choose from and just picked the ten that I was happy with. It’s an acoustic record, but there are bits of percussion and bits of strings. What is your favourite track? ‘Butterﬂy Culture’, because it’s one of the older ones. I still kind of get a nostalgic vibe when I’m playing it, like I do with all the others but that one in particular I’ve played for three or four years, so it’s nice to play it each night. It must be really difﬁcult for an unsigned artist to continue their dreams and ﬁnancially support themselves. Can you tell us how you built up to this album unsigned? I recorded a lot of demos in local studios back at home and around friends’ houses. I put a lot of things online such as MySpace and YouTube, and played as many gigs as possible. I made myself available, kept myself busy, constantly writing, which I think is the most important thing. Can you describe the journey so far? The journey has been good. It’s nice to be ﬁnally able to tour and play busy shows; that is the important thing for me. It’s been mad, I didn’t expect it but I don’t feel like I’ve achieved too much yet.
To get to this point where I’m able to play shows people are coming to and for them to be getting into the records, saying nice things about them; that’s amazing for me. What would you say your highlight is so far? Playing a night at the Union Chapel for Mencap, something Jo Whiley put on. It’s an amazing old church in London and the acoustics are really good, great sounds, good vibes in there. Also, playing at Glastonbury. What is your ultimate goal as a musician? Ultimate goal as a musician, that’s a good question. Just to still be writing really and recording songs when I’m like 100. Who has inﬂuenced you and your sound? I love Bruce Springsteen, Neil Young, Bob Dylan, The Beatles, Ryan Adams, so I guess from a song writing point of view they’ve really inﬂuenced me. But sonically I think people like Kate Bush and Sigur Ros are really interesting, and from a production point of view, not that my records sound as big and spacey as that, but the way they enhance their songs with the sounds they use is really impressive and honest. That’s something I want to work on in the future. Personally I ﬁnd your music very calming. What does your music do for you? For me I guess my music helps me chill out. It’s nice to write and create something, record it and
go through that whole process. It’s kind of therapeutic when I’m writing, I know that probably sounds weird to a lot of people but when I sit down and I’m playing I get in my own zone away from everything else. What is your ideal writing zone? Wherever I feel comfortable I think, but there’s no particular place. I like writing in Sydney, I’ve been there a couple of times as I have family there and always feel really chilled. Anywhere I feel comfortable really. On a train or in my room, there’s no formula for me, if I feel chilled it happens. What do you enjoy besides music? I really like chilling out and listening to music, I know that is music but that is what I love and spend so much time doing! I like hanging out with friends, going to the pub, you know normal kind of things, being with my girl. A load of different things really; reading, watching ﬁlms. Favourite ﬁlm? I’d say a ﬁlm called ‘A Very Long Engagement’. It’s a ﬁlm by a French director about the war.
PLUS Watch an exclusive interview min two live acoustic songs from Benja Francis Leftwich online: www.TheStudentPocketGuide.com
Did you go to university or college? I went to college, but I wasn’t particularly high achieving. I did history, economics, philosophy, and geography. What would be your top tip for people trying to break into the music scene? Keep writing and keep being honest with yourself. Stay inspired; play as many shows as possible and focus on the music as opposed to all the other things around it, but that stuff will always come together if the music connects with people. For more info on Benjamin go to: www.benjaminfrancisleftwich.com
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Part Time Now For A Full Time Future As the summer holiday and festival season draws to an end, amongst the fun and memories, there is no doubt that a few pounds were spent along the way - we all know the prices of sun cream and food sold at festivals these days! So after a summer of spending and with the new academic year upon us, now is the perfect time to get a part time job. After all, freshersâ€™ week needs to be funded! Whether you are a returning student or a fresher, the excitement of independence, new experiences and meeting lots of new friends over the coming months are the tell-tale signs that youâ€™re ready to embark on university life. Yes university is often considered the best time of our lives - freedom from the parents, hours of spare time and of course, lots of parties! Whilst university is all about having a good time and ultimately gaining a good qualification, many of us overlook the opportunity to utilise our spare time with part time employment. Student jobs are a great way to earn some extra cash but also provide you with crucial content for your CV. A common trait amongst graduates is a lack of work experience to complement their educational achievements. Many jobs such as bartenders, waitresses and PR staff are suited to the student lifestyle.
www.studentjob.co.uk The laid back working atmospheres and flexible hours make these positions very popular amongst students. These jobs are also a great way to socialise and make new friends whilst working. We can’t complain with that! The student jobs mentioned previously are all customer facing roles, providing you with the opportunity to develop your interpersonal skills – an invaluable asset to possess after graduation. These skills not only help you with general working life but will also improve your confidence in job interviews and assessment centres. In addition, these jobs can introduce you to valuable contacts, a key advantage for your future as you never know what opportunity might come around the corner. Maintaining a part time job whilst studying also demonstrates your ability to organise and manage your time effectively in achieving a balance between your academic work and outside commitments. A degree substantiates your competence in academic and theoretical aspects of your profession but ignores key qualities which are sought after by employers. These skills coined ‘soft skills’ such as communication, teamwork, problem solving and social skills are learnt in a working environment. Employers recognise that part time jobs are a great way to gain practical work experience whilst studying as it proves that you are able to make the transition from study to work. StudentJob is an online job portal just for students with a wide range of part time jobs, internships, summer jobs and graduate jobs from throughout the UK. When registering with us you specify what types of jobs you are interested in and we will send all matching vacancies directly to your inbox! For more information please contact: Rebecca Twohey Project Manager - StudentJob UK E: firstname.lastname@example.org W: www.studentjob.co.uk
Thank you for reading
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Published on Sep 18, 2011
Freshers 2011 featuring interviews with Example, Katy B and Stephen Merchant, our guide to your first weeks as a fresher and some amazing re...