Trevelyan slated for ‘owls at Harry Potter-themed formal’ plans
Trev’s College, known for nothing more than its slightly unusual but still unexciting shape, has become unexpectedly relevant after revealing plans to use owls at their next charity formal.
“Hootgate” as it has been nicknamed by members of the JCR has sprung up in light of the decision to include owls for the purpose of photo opportunities in the Harry Potter themed Trevs Night formal due to be held tonight.
The JCR voted in favour of owls at the event – but a secondary vote means they will be hosted outdoors rather than inside as initially planned, in order to be “closer to their natural environment”.
Many Trevelyanites have expressed their disapproval over the inclusion of Hedwig and friends in the night, including second years Alba Elliot and Lucy Brown, who proposed an animal rights motion for the emergency JCR meeting on Wednesday evening that was scheduled in response to the continued debate.
The basic outline of their motion was aiming to prevent animals being used for entertainment purposes only. Although this was a direct response to the planned presence of owls at Trevs Night and they expressed their concern at the prospect, among other things, of putting the owls into contact with hoards of post-formal, drunken Trevelyanites.
In the opposite corner, the Social Chair and Trevs Night organiser, second year Issy Sawkins, responded to the allegations of animal cruelty, explaining how appropriate measures to protect the owls will be put in place.
Furthermore, the owls to be included in the event have been hired from an owl sanctuary and are unable to be released into the wild, and the money received by hiring them out will go towards benefiting their lifestyle and also their general care and maintenance.
The situation has provoked fierce discussion among students from both sides of the argument.
A supporter of the inclusion of the owls in the event was Milo Thompson, Law first year, who said: “It’s our right to be above animals in the hierarchy, democracy took away fox hunting, and that’s a travesty.”
Modern Languages fresher Jon Kirk responded: “I think, in this context, it is extremely disappointing that people would prefer an entertaining night rather than protecting the welfare of animals”.
Third year Will Lavelle linked Hootgate to the gender-neutral toilet scenario.
The consequential emergency JCR meeting ended, after an hour and a half of heated debate, with a vote in favour of having the owls at the event. However, this was followed by a second vote which elected to have the owls outside, rather than inside as had been planned, as this would be closer to their natural environment, hopefully ensuring that their feathery friends will be more at ease.
Does this vote signal the end of #Hootgate? Or will the debate continue to cause rifts inside Trevs?