As a Third Year student, the campus has become familiar grounds to me. As an extremely inquisitive person when bored, I developed a knack of walking to every nook and cranny that the University had hidden to me at the time. So, you must be burning to know what I have found. There are so many things that you will not know if you’re a Fresher. Maybe you are the curious type that has already found all my gems, in which case I should probably stop now.
I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you haven’t found them. The best place on campus, as you may already know, is the duck pond at any time of the year, except when it rains. It’s a beautiful place to sit and hang out with friends at one of the barbecue pits we have.
If you’re a nature seeker, another spot I love is behind the InfoLab; watching traffic while sitting on the grass. Another natural spot is the woodland trail, which can easily be accessed from the South West of campus. County College boasts good spots as well: you could walk to town via the cycle/footpath, or could access the pods outside of LICA building. Be warned, however, that not everyone has access to those pods, so unless you’re doing an arts subject or your friend is, you will not be able to access it as you will need your library card to gain entry.
For good food on campus, whether you’re looking to go green or you’re the type of person who could dig in to any type of grub available, I would suggest Café 21 at the InfoLab. It does vegetarian, vegan and fish options. Fylde bar has really good burritos, cheesy curly fries, Furness has awesome milkshakes, and Grizedale has yummy wraps. If you go to the Great Hall, the LICA bar serves tea, coffee and other knick knacks. Check out Juicafe on campus for some refreshing smoothies. Oh, and Costa at the management school if you fancy it, though it does get a tad busy.
There are plenty of things to do and join on campus such as societies and clubs, but Lancaster Arts, formerly known as Live at LICA regularly has theatre performances and concerts, and the Peter Scott gallery hosts worldwide art ranging from contemporary to modern. The Lounge, which is located near the County South lecture theatre, is accessible to both students and members of staff but less frequented by students, and boasts a relaxed environment and good food. If you venture further into County, there is a tonne of space at Lancaster Square to play ball, practice your Frisbee skills or just sit.
Overall, the campus boasts many exciting places. Most bars have a pool table, and County, Bowland, Cartmel (Barker House Farm) and Lonsdale serve up hearty meals for catered accommodation students, which can also be used by non-catered students. To help save on meals in these venues, the University offers a ReFuel card.
The University also has the Chaplaincy centre: a multi-faith centre for anyone from any background, and a prayer room which is especially allocated for Muslims. It is a calm place to sit in regardless of your religion and most importantly has a very peaceful vibe to it.
Whether you’re an undergraduate or a postgraduate; into parties or you much prefer spending time on your own; the University is a place for everyone. Being in my final year now, I am extremely glad to have come to Lancaster and enjoy the inclusivity that it offers. Be sure to make the most of your time and see if you can discover any hidden Lancaster University gems for yourself. What will you find in your time here?