Fresher lawyers distraught after ‘carnage’ fire alarm exam

‘The invigilators didn’t seem to have any idea what to do’


When fresher Ellie Mullan sat down at her UK Constitutional Law exam yesterday she could never have imagined the nightmare that would follow. 

The Jo Butler lawyer had trekked up to Maiden Castle for the crucial paper, which started just like any other.

Ellie, 19, had 15 minutes of reading time in the large hall — but just as everyone picked up the pens to start, disaster struck when a fire alarm began to blare.

Victim, Ellie, 19.

Victim, Ellie, 19.

The fresher said: “Everyone was completely amazed. The invigilators didn’t seem to have any idea what to do.

“We all just sat in our seats looking at one another, until they told us to go outside.

“They told us to be quiet but they didn’t really seem bothered that everyone was talking.”

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Maiden Hall

After eight tense minutes of what Ellie described as “carnage”, they were allowed back into the exam hall.

She added: “We didn’t know whether we could start writing again or not, so people were picking up their pens and things.

“Before he restarted us, the invigilator said that they’d know if we’d been on our phones if it turned up on YikYak before five.

“The whole thing was rather odd and we were really put off.”

Nervous finalists were also sitting Labour Economics in the same hall when the fire alarm went off.

Matt Fellows, 21, also of Jo Butler said: “I’m a third year economics student, and it did have quite an impact, because of the disruption, and it also made it much harder to gauge how far through the exam you were.

“A few of us ran out of time. I have sent an email to ask them to make sure the circumstances are considered when they come to mark it.”

In the fraught aftermath, there has yet to be any suggestion of extra credit on offer.