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Life in a small Northern University

Life in a small Northern University

Around September 1992, I went to Bradford University (with a year off for good behaviour). And instead of doing the sensible thing like going to lectures, going home and then going to the pub, I did the insanely stupid thing of throwing myself headfirst (and very foolishly and naively) into student media/union life, alongside fellow students who seemed to take the Union far more seriously than I did.

Fast forward 17 years, and thanks to Mosh (who patently has nothing better to do), he sent me scurrying down the research hallways of the Web and Wikipedia to deduce that in those 17 years:

  • Ramair pub crawls are no longer held “because of risk to students off-campus”. Blimey, is it THAT dangerous in Bradford these days? (Then again, there were two riots while I lived there)
  • The “famed” Friday Night Disco (or FNDs for short) are no longer FNDs. In a nod to the subtleties of today’s multicultural multimedia multitasking students, they are now called Flirt! instead.
  • The Biko bar – where I spent the odd night drowning in perry before it disappeared from every pub I went to, only to come back into the warm bosom of my throat 15 years later as pear cider – closed in 2005
  • The student magazine I used to write for (and the one which got me a whole week in Prague just before the Iron Curtain was blown apart by McDonalds and Starbucks) has now been renamed from Scrapie to the unimaginatively entitled ‘The Bradford Student’. Tsk, tsk, no imagination these days.
  • When I was there, four people I knew ran for President or Vice President. Which was a shame, because the post was apparently abolished in 2000. Although they still have a Woman’s Officer. I hope she’s as feisty and alluring and purple-headed as she was in my day…
  • Radio Ramair offices

    Radio Ramair offices

    There’s a student radio station called Ramair, where I had a terrible radio show for three years. I’m also listed as News Editor in 1995, but I can’t really remember that much about it. Which seems odd considering I must have had to do at least one news bulletin a day…

But most important of all …

Back in 1994/5, I ended up setting up the Bradford University Union website, back when most people didn’t even know what a website was. Somehow, I was given Lifetime Membership of said Union as a reward, although I’ve never been back since to claim my discount pints. And for all the confusing clutter that it has today, it still has the name I gave it back in 1994 – UBU Online.

However, I shall now shut up (chorus: too late), lest I become yet another one of those sad people who relive their student days through golden-tinted specs, and are so compelled to write themselves into the story of a student media radio station that they set up their own amateur press agency. Yes, Simon Sheikh, I mean you. I’ve been trying to figure out why he wanted to add me on Facebook.

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