Catz Bar Closed Indefinitely After Vandalism

“Climate of anger and mistrust prevails” as Catz Dean closes their bar “indefinitely” and cancels Halloween bop.

Bop Catz dean Drinking drinking society Kittens Octagon St Catharine's College St Chads

Catz bar has been closed indefinitely after an incident of vandalism on Thursday evening.

Individuals, as yet unidentified, trashed the Lower Octagon, a communal space at Catz’s second year accommodation, St Chad’s, on Thursday evening.

Cushions were slashed, toilet roll holders torn from the walls, and fire extinguishers let off.

A member of college staff, performing a routine check on Friday morning, found an unidentified individual sleeping in the Octagon. The college authorities were alerted.

As yet, no one has admitted to the incident.

In an email sent to students on Friday afternoon, Stuart McLellan, the college’s Junior Bursar, said, “The Dean has been informed that at some time in the last 12 hours the Lower Octagon was used for a party or similar event without permission being granted. Furnishings and fittings were damaged and fire extinguishers discharged.

“Furthermore ASDA appear to have made a substantial delivery of alcohol to St Chad’s which links one or more residents to the incident.

“The Dean has therefore instructed that the JCR bop scheduled for this evening [Friday] be cancelled and that the College bar is not to be opened.  The Octagon is out of bounds to all students and no one may have a party in any of the flats.”

However, Catz students are livid that the actions of a few, unidentified individuals have resulted in such extreme and wide ranging disciplinary measures.

Furthermore, the Dean is refusing to communicate directly with the student body. The only communication with the JCR has been mediated through the college porters.

The pervasive sentiment is that the Dean is out of touch with the students.

“I think that it is ridiculous that the Dean has acted in a way that punishes the entire student body, but without so much as an email to the student body to explain what he is doing,” commented a second year NatSci who does not wish to be named.

“His refusal to communicate with the JCR – who are, after all, our elected student representatives – just demonstrates how out of touch he is.”

JCR President, Ben Lewis told The Tab: “The JCR understands the need for the Dean to maintain a safe and studious environment at St Catharine’s, but is saddened that the chosen method is collective punishment.

“JCR officers have dropped everything to investigate who is responsible for the incident at St Chad’s, we have every reason to implicate a group external to the College, and have informed the Dean of this.

“However despite no evidence that undergraduates are involved, we lost our Bop, the Fellows, Students and Alumni have lost their bar and a climate of anger and mistrust prevails.

“The JCR will continue to lobby the Dean to rescind collective punishment in the absence of any evidence implicating any of our members.”

Catz’s Dean, nicknamed Dr X by the students, has featured in The Tab before when his punishment of the Catz rugby boys hit Cambridge – and then national – headlines. The boys vandalised The Red Bull on a rugby social.

The Dean’s punishment in that case was considered to be excessive – he disbanded the team for the whole year – if at least directed only at the perpetrators.

A third year English student added, “The Dean has a history of slightly unreasonable behaviour – last year a girl was deaned for setting off the fire alarm making garlic bread. She was banned from a gyp room for the rest of the year, although the act wasn’t malicious in any way.

“This just isn’t a workable situation – we’re all behind the JCR committee but we don’t know what else we can do.”

An anonymous email account has been set up for anyone who has any information to confess. Anyone who wishes to use this anonymous email address should sign into Google Mail as “[email protected]” and using the password “anonymous1”.