The Accommodation Team

Here at Edge Hill, everyone understands that some times things just don’t go quite as planned the first time around – especially when it comes to living space.

As written about last week, Palatine was my first choice accommodation and I was lucky enough to get it when I first arrived at Edge Hill. Despite absolutely loving my room and all the facilities it provided, being central on campus and close to my subject building and making some very good friends in the flat, I also had some disagreements with others in the building and decided over the Christmas break that I would be happier somewhere else.

The procedure was incredibly easy and simple. I emailed the Accommodation Team and they sent me a Request to Transfer form to fill out and send back. When I arrived back at Uni after the Christmas break, because I had filled out the form, I could go straight to the Student Information Centre (SIC – where many student services are housed, including Accommodation) to arrange a move.

I was offered the choice of which cluster on campus I would like to move to, if I wanted single sex or combined flat, if I wanted self-catered, and if I wanted an en suite. As my previous flat had had most of these things, I decided to stick with a similar cluster at the same price as the previous.

I managed to move the majority of my stuff over that day, with the help from some friends. I’m now in Chancellors South, which is an incredibly pretty area of the campus as it overlooks one of the lakes, the beach and several fountains- which all mean we get to see plenty of famous Edge Hill ducks! The new flatmates I live with have been incredibly welcoming and friendly, but have also managed to stay connected with friends I had made in the first few months in my old flat.

 

 

 

 

The moral of this story is that although moving in with new people as a fresher can be scary, there will always be people ready and willing to help you out with any concerns, no matter how big all small.

My experience of student accommodation

Hey all! Hope the beginning to your week has gone well so far!

I recently uploaded a blog on the different types of accommodation, which I will link below now;

Life at Edge Hill: On-Campus Accommodation

This blog is a more general view of the accommodation that is on offer on campus at Edge Hill, so I wanted to offer a more personal view of the accommodation I was living in; the Margaret Bain (all female) Back Halls!

When applying for accommodation, you get to choose 5 different halls in which you would be happy with, in order of your first to last choice. Obviously, as a lot of students apply there’s the odd chance you might not get your first option, but they try their hardest to fit everyone where they want and both me and most of the people I know who lived on campus actually did get their first choice! I made Back Halls my first choice for a variety of reasons; it was fairly close to the centre of the campus, I didn’t mind sharing a bathroom, it was the cheapest option (so I could spend more money on food and social things!), and when I went on an accommodation tour when I auditioned for my course I loved how spacious the rooms were!

I don’t have any decent pics of my room last year, but it basically looked like this, but with the bookcase on top of the desk and the bedside cabinet at the end of the bed!

The great thing about Back Halls is that although it’s the cheapest option for on-campus accommodation, it’s not a dump! I know a lot of people worry about cheap Uni accommodation but I was more than happy with the building and even miss the homeliness of my room last year! The only real big different to the more expensive accommodation options, for example Founders Court and Chancellors Court/South, is that you share a bathroom with your cluster and you don’t get an ensuite or TV/computer in your room. Every accommodation has a shared kitchen, so that’s not any different to other buildings! The kitchens and bathrooms are maintained throughout the week by a cleaner that the Uni hire, the only time you have to keep it clean is throughout the weekend. So, it’s always clean, and to be honest I rarely even had an issue of waiting for showers or the toilet! There are also so many pros to not spending more money on accommodation:

  • You have more money for food (and Dominos… I know what you’re all thinking!)
  • You have more money for shopping and general student habits
  • You have more money to go to restaurants etc. on nice occasions
  • You have more money to go on nights out!

Another thing that I found amazing about Back Halls is that it’s the only accommodation on campus that has a proper declared common room area. There is a TV in this room that has a license paid for by the Uni and sofas for you and your flatmates to all sit and talk, get to know each other at Freshers’, and enjoy some TV together. It’s just such a wonderful atmosphere!

There are also even more perks this year than there was last year. Here are some of the new and old things I loved about its location:

  • Last year I loved the fact that Back Halls is right next to the SU bar! Not only is this good for going to the events, as it’s literally a 2 minute walk, but there is also the SU takeaway there too, the SU shop where you can buy clothes and Edge Hill merch and there’s now even a brand new Subway!
  • You just have to walk through the corridor that links all of these together and you’re right in front of the Hub. This is super useful if you want to use the computers on the top floor or drop in to get a Starbucks! It’s also a 5 minutes walk away from the library, which was useful when I’d forgotten to grab a book or two.
  • It’s just around the corner from the Durning Centre, where you collect post. Just round the corner from that there is also an exit to the Uni which takes you just outside Ruff Woods- the beautiful woods that are just outside the Uni. I loved just popping up there for a walk when I was stressed or just needed alone time.

Another great thing you’ll find about living in student accommodation is the friends you make! Of course, living with strangers can be nerve-wracking, and you might not be best friends with everyone, that’s just the nature of getting to know people, but you will find friends for life on campus. I’m living with two girls I was living with next year this year too, by choice, because we got so close last year! And I wouldn’t have met either of them if I wasn’t living in that building, so I’m forever grateful for the chance to meet likeminded and fun people that the on-campus accommodation and Back Halls gave me!

If you want to know any more about my experience, any questions you want, drop me a comment! I hope this has given you an idea of what it’s like and the pros of living in student accommodation!

My essentials to bring to uni!

Hey guys, hope you’re doing well! I’m settled back home after my first year at Edge Hill and I’m missing it like crazy already.

Whilst preparing to leave for the Summer I got thinking about when I arrived way back in September. One of the most worrying things was packing, I actually ended up bringing way too much stuff I just didn’t need and the car was as full as it could be! I think the biggest tip I could give you is to only bring stuff you use regularly. I brought stuff saying to myself “oh but it might be useful” and it honestly never came to use and just ended up cluttering my room up…

Here’s a list of the stuff that I made sure I brought, some obvious, some not so obvious!

  • Electricals (laptop, phone, mp3 player, chargers): maybe one of the more obvious things on this list! If you have a laptop, it’s definitely useful to bring despite the resources on campus, as sometimes the library and such might be busy, or you might just not feel like leaving your room! I found it useful during my lectures too to take notes. Although I listed the most obvious electricals, if you have a radio/music player or a TV that you want to bring for entertainment that’s also great, I brought my vinyl player and bought a TV once I’d saved up some money! If you have an extension cable that might also be super handy to bring with you, there was only three sockets in my room and they were all on the same wall, so I got myself one from the local Home Bargains! There are some electricals that the Uni don’t want students to bring, and you’ll get a list explaining these coming up to your arrival on campus.
  • Bedding: you need to get yourself a duvet, pillows and covers! The Uni don’t provide these, so you need to get yourself bedding. This is a chance to get something comfy and cool to come back to at the end of your uni days!
  • Books and CDs: if you’re big into reading or music I’d definitely recommend this! There is more of a bookshelf in the Back Halls accommodation (which I was in) than most of the other buildings, but there’s space in each type of accommodation for books and CDs and it gives you something to do when you want some you time.
  • Clothing: again, an obvious one, but what was less obvious to me is you don’t need to bring your whole wardrobe!!! Just bring your favourite pieces, cause if you bring too much it won’t fit in your wardrobe and you’ll also end up getting tempted to wear more outfits than is really humanly needed throughout your week and your laundry will be a nightmare… trust me, it happens.
  • Board games: I did not initially bring these with me, but I’ll now recommend them as a staple of student life! It’s definitely useful for getting to know people. I now have good old Twister in my possession and it’s given me great memories within the flat.
  • Bath/hair/healthcare products: another obvious one, but I’d actually suggest you went into Ormskirk the day you move in and pick some of these up so you don’t have boxes and boxes of shampoo and toothpaste in your car! I went into town to the Morrisons with my parents just before grabbing my room keys and it was nice to get all my essentials, especially with my parents reminding me what I need to live… sometimes you can forget the little things!

Overall, anything you bring to Uni will be something you either need to live or need to entertain yourself, but if you follow the rule of “do I use this often? Is it necessary or can I live without it for 9 months?”, you won’t bring too much clutter!

If you have any questions about anything in particular, such as whether certain things are needed upon moving in, drop me a comment! I hope you all have a wonderful day 🙂

Food glorious food!

Hello all, hope you’re having a wonderful week!

One of the things that is probably the most demanding things about living a more independent life is fending for yourself food-wise! I had not had much experience cooking before Uni, so this was definitely one of my higher concerns, but it’ll be different for different people. And, even though I was nervous about getting behind a pan and not setting fire to anyone or anything in my path, as time has passed I’ve come to be much more comfortable and happy cooking.

A lot of people joke that University students live solely off pizza, takeout and pasta and, well… it is a little bit true. Not always true, but pasta is definitely a staple of the student diet, and when student finance comes Domino’s certainly gets an increase of income. However, if you fall into unhealthy eating patterns you’ll be doing yourself no good. You need your strength, energy and a good balance of the food types and vitamins etc. you need to put all the focus and effort you need to put into your studies to be a successful student and do yourself proud. Plus, if you chose to live off takeaways you would completely mess up your budget – that stuff is expensive!

There are some ways that you can ensure you get what you need from food:

  • Get your veggies!- the problem with a lot easily cooked meals that students generally gravitate towards is that they don’t have any vegetables with them. I may sound like your mother when you were a kid, but it’s an easy mistake to make if someone forgets to include vegetables in their meals. They give you a lot of stuff you need though, so even if you popped a side of lettuce, cucumber or carrot sticks onto meals, which is just as easily prepared as a ready meal, you’ll be a lot healthier and it’ll do you a whole world of benefit!
  • Variety is important – not only is creating meals with a variety important to stop yourself getting bored when it comes to meal times, but this will also help balance your meals.
  • Get yourself a recipe book and try something new! – again, the “try something new” might sound like something your mother would say, but it’ll help you a lot! I’m a fussy eater, but when you’re being more independent it’s a lot harder to be fussy about food. I never thought I’d be sticking mango in a chicken meal, but last week I tried it, and even though it wasn’t something I’d try again, it was a nice meal to try! You never know, you might find you like some interesting things. On top of trying new things giving you more variety, it’s also really fun to experiment with food. I grabbed a couple of recipe books that were on sale at my local book shop before arriving at Uni and they’re pretty cool. I even managed to grab a book which teaches you how to do microwaveable mug meals, so you can really find stuff tailored to student life!

Your health is super important at Uni, as it can affect your study, so food, your diet and getting into cooking is something I’d definitely ensure you’re thinking about! Another side to the topic of food is budgeting for meals, so I’ll be a doing another post on that soon which I’ll link below once it’s done (click here for that post)!

Hope you all have a great end to your week 🙂

The Arts Centre Box Office- Theatre Galore!

Hello all, hope you’re having a good end to February.

I wanted to make sure you knew about one of- in my opinion at least- the best things about Edge Hill… The Arts Centre, Edge Hill’s own working theatre! Although the Arts Centre building is also a host for the Performing Arts courses, there are two wonderful theatres that offer shows galore: the Rose Theatre and the Studio Theatre.

The Rose Theatre

I spoke with lovely Celia Wardle-Robinson and Gemma Roberts from the Arts Centre’s Box Office about what is on offer a short while ago so that you can get a better idea of just the kind of eclectic things are on offer for all students at Edge Hill- yes, all students! You don’t have to be on a Performing Arts course to take part in any of the events and shows put on at the Arts Centre!

 

The Arts Centre Box Office- the whos and the whats

The Box Office- the place where all the good stuff happens in the Arts Centre. This is the main port of call for anyone who wants tickets, brochures or a membership (click here for the post where I talk about this!). This is where you’ll be welcomed by Celia and Gemma, who have always been the most helpful people when I had any queries or wanted to book tickets. The Box Office staff are also the ones who ensure everyone is updated on shows that will be shown at Edge Hill, and coordinate with people such as the Campus Life crew to bring events such as the Open Mics, Talent Shows and Student Cook-Offs.

 

Open Mic Nights/Talent Shows

These are free events that take place within the Arts Centre Red Bar- the place pictured in-between the two posters above. Students are invited to show off their musical and non-musical talents at these nights in front of a great crowd of their friends. The atmosphere is always great, which makes it both fun to be in the audience and less nerve-wracking for those who want to perform.

 

What kind of shows are performed?

If you’re a fan of any type of theatre, you’ll find something you’ll enjoy!

Just a few of the tickets I’ve collected since September!

Edge Hill has two student dance companies that often perform at the Arts Centre, and they’ll be performing before the James Wilton Dance company as their curtain-raiser for the show Leviathan on the 28th February. Leviathan is James Wilton’s re-imagining of the novel Moby Dick and features “a cast of seven, Wilton’s trademark blend of athletic dance, martial arts, capoeira and partner-work…”.

Another show that has just been performed by the company Reckless Sleepers was Negative Space- a humorous, and slightly strange 50 minute performance revolving around a very interesting set:

A picture from the performance of Negative Space

The set began as this perfect plasterboard box, with only the actress in the blue dress onstage, but ended battered, holey and with 6 very dusty looking performers onstage. I saw this show, and although there wasn’t a single word spoken, it was a brilliant performance! The slapstick elements of the ridiculous that occurred throughout kept the audience laughing, and the things that the performers did in destroying the set- such as pushing performers through the plasterboard or jumping through it themselves- kept shocking the audience too.

On the 6th February we were lucky enough to host an evening with Julie Atherton- if you are a fan of Musical Theatre, you might have heard her name before! Julie has performed in musicals such as Fame and Mamma Mia and was even a member of the company Avenue Q who make puppet shows with an adult twist.

She performed songs from her career and shared some of her favourite stories from along the way. Click the link below if you want to check out one of her songs:

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If you’re just into music rather than theatre, we have nights for you too!

Above is the poster for the music event that was hosted last Saturday, which allowed students to see some really amazing bands! The line-up included Sex Swing- a band tipped to be one of the top 50 bands of this year-, Cavalier Song and Agathe Max.

 

So those are just some of the wonderful things that go on in the Arts Centre and within the Box Office! I’ve uploaded a blog post that I linked above on the FREE Arts Membership I’ll be uploading a post on other events such as the Free Film Friday the Arts Centre put on just for students and theatre and film screenings!

Most of the shows are open to the local public, but are priced at £5 for Edge Hill Students, one of the best things about the Arts Centre in my opinion, as I used to never attend theatre shows due to the prices at the bigger theatres around my area! If you have a membership, it’s free for you too! But more on that later… For now, here’s a link to the Arts Centre’s website and the online brochure so you can have a look at what else is on through to Summer- hey, if you live close, you could even come along to one of the shows!

The Arts Centre