Purge THIS, Professor Wellings

Photograph by Rob Miller
Photograph by Rob Miller

It’s Vice Chancellor Wellings’s pre-leaving do this week. All of his mates, VIP’s I’ll have you know, are coming round to stride toward through County South and marvel at how clean, tidy and mess free it is. Windows so clean that their gleam renders them opaque, paving so spotless you could and would eat your dinner off them, and not a single flapping, crumpled poster in sight.

What exactly is the Vice Chancellor hoping to prove to the Rt. Hon. Lord Sir Mate-of-Mine? Is he hoping to suggest that County are students are so respectful of their college that they daren’t even promote themselves, their societies and their campaigns, lest University Management get their panties in a wad at the sight of a wind-battered sheet of A4 hanging by a slither of tape? Maybe, perhaps if they’re so far out of University that they’ve forgotten the watertight connotations that the words ‘activism’ and ‘event’ have with educational institutions. “Gosh, Paul, not only do you have true accolades such as your hard work in establishing worldwide campuses, fresh new housing and a top ten place in all the league tables, but your students are also so hard working that they’ve forgotten to indulge themselves in the arts, the playing field, the democratic process and the pub. Have a cigar!” they’ll say. Absolute travesty is the only way to describe the reasoning behind jeopardising, for instance, the publicity for the Northern Oak, which will later undoubtedly be threatened with firings or closure for low profits for the umpteenth time by the same people who deemed their publicity obstructive.

I saw posters advertising beer festivals, offers and live events being torn down. And JCR campaign posters. Oh, did you know that this week is campaign week for the JCR elections? Candidates have spent varying amounts of time, depending on design quality, creating posters to pin up and promote themselves. Some of them went up today, and have had oh, I don’t know, half an hour to catch everyone’s attention? Still, it’s only the students paying to print them (printing charges can go hang, also), they always have savings to dip into so they’ll have no problem whatsoever shelling out more money to print another truckload of posters and miss a lecture or two putting them up in the freezing cold force nine gale. How horrible it was to see a JCR candidate put up some posters, go into County diner and watch them all being torn down five minutes later, by officials acting on the supposed preferences of a group of people (who bring nothing to the semblance of the University) so far removed from the University they’re in Morecambe. And for what? For a thirty second walk to the great hall.

LUSU have the decency to offer advanced warnings on poster purges, so hurrah for that, but where were they for this management authorized purge? Nowhere, because University management didn’t even inform them. So, sorry to the County college campaigners, sorry to Lancaster University Theatre Group and any other society that was promoting in that area, sorry to the bar. Your time, effort, expenditure and need for publicity is not high up on the list of things that these partygoers consider of value. At least they have their hanging baskets and their dull pillars, eh. As they made their way past County Bar, there was a very loud darts team in one room, and a very loud PA system in the other. I hope this ruined their night for them.