Jack Edwards on college potatoes, Jimmy’s and life as a semi-famous Durham student

‘I’m constantly trying to prove I’m not a dick’

Durham is by no means devoid of Big Names On Campus. We have Eliza Batten from MiC, Henry Bird from Bake Off and a whole host of stupidly fit charity fashion show models which are basically like the Naomi Campbells of Durham – famous in their own right. But none of the Durham elite elicit as much conversation or debate as our very own Jack Edwards, a YouTuber (or “studytuber” because that’s a thing now) with 214k subscribers who attends Cuth’s college and just really loves his college brunch hash browns.

Jack is graduating this year and leaving Durham behind for good. He spoke to The Durham Tab about reflections on his time at uni, getting “Prick” shouted in his face by people he’d never met, which level of the Billy B is truly king and what he’s planning on doing next. For all the questions you wished you could ask Jack Edwards if you met him drunk in a college bar, here are the satisfying answers.

How do you feel to be graduating?

“Leaving Durham is really bittersweet. I’ve loved my time at Durham a lot and met the most wonderful people, but I’m also excited to travel and explore some new places. I’m definitely not done with education just yet though as I really love my degree (English), but I think a gap year to recalibrate will do me a world of good.”

What are your plans post-graduation?

“The job hunt isn’t going particularly well, having been rejected from everything I applied for so far. Travel is pretty much a no-no, with the screenwriting course I was supposed to be doing abroad being cancelled. So, I guess I’m currently planning the most lame gap yah of all time where the only place I can ‘find myself’ is the town I grew up in. I don’t think the naff tattoo and tapestry will be quite as good, but I’ll give it a shot and make the most of it.”

How did it feel to be semi-famous at your uni?

“On one hand, I felt really lucky to get to meet so many interesting people who I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to chat to otherwise, just because they’d seen me on YouTube. Everyone at Durham has a story to tell and I’m glad I got to hear so many. Plus, I somehow managed to coerce Henry Bird to bake my 21st birthday cake which is going to be my icebreaker ‘fun fact’ for the rest of my life.

“On the other hand, it just makes you extremely self-conscious, and I think some people decide that you’re probably a massive arsehole before they’ve actually met you, which is a shame. One time a girl came up to me at a party absolutely FUMING (like blood-boiling anger) because I’d skipped the queue in Klute. She claimed I’d arrogantly skipped ahead ‘because you think you’re a big shot YouTuber’ but the reality was that I was just on a Cuth’s Running Club social where we’d paid for wristbands.

“People post online that they saw me snorting coke off a loo seat at a party (not true but I’m flattered they think I’m that cool) or shout ‘PRICK’ in my face as they walk past me coming home from a lecture. I think the bigger the number attached to your name gets, the less people see you as a human being which is strange because not much has really changed for me aside from the digits of my subscriber count. I feel a bit like I’m constantly trying to prove I’m not a dick, which is an uphill battle when someone’s already made their mind up before meeting you.”

What is your weirdest encounter with a viewer in Durham?

“I’m still baffled by the Durfess that claimed someone had seen me stealing Milky Bars from Dunelm. This came as a surprise to everyone, especially me, as I’m more of a Crunchie kinda guy. However, if I was going to steal anything from Dunelm it’d definitely be their industrial-sized tubs of hummus. They could’ve at least made the story convincing.”

Fave Wednesday night out in Durham?

“Jimmy’s. Any day of the week.”

Fave Durham takeaway?

“Stanton’s cheesy chips with gravy. Unbeatable.”

Favourite potato at college meals?

“Hash browns with brunch – I’d come back to visit Durham just for those beauties.”

If you had to go to a college that wasn’t Cuths, where would you go and why?

“I actually applied to JoBo. I knew nothing about what the college system meant and so just picked it simply because I was studying Josephine Butler in A Level History and thought she was a cool lady. Sometimes I do mourn for the calves I could’ve had if I’d actually been accepted to a hill college.”

Will you continue to be a YouTuber now you’ve finished studying?

“I’ll still be a massive attention whore, so yes absolutely. In all seriousness, I sort of fell into being a ‘university YouTuber’ by accident and it definitely wasn’t the plan, I just filmed Freshers’ Week because no-one else had. 2017 Jack was a nervous wreck, quaking at the thought of university, so I just made the videos I would’ve wanted to watch. That video changed my life in a way I never could have anticipated, and I’m still a bit baffled by it now.

“It still feels like a hobby which is the most important thing, and I’m so, so lucky that people have supported me so much online. I’ll definitely be making TikToks in my care home when the time comes.”

Quick fire round: Klute or Jimmy’s?

“Always Jimmy’s – this is a hot take but I truly believe it’s a much more iconic club than Klute.”

Best level of the Billy B?

“Had a long term love affair with Level 3 but flirted with Level 4.”

Lebeneat or Spag’s?

“Big fan of both, but I’ll go with Spag’s. The Gnocchi Amelia is to die for.”

Well there you have it folks, wave goodbye to our Big YouTuber on Campus. We will always remember him fondly for that time someone checked out all his library books as soon as he posted them on his Instagram story. Goodbye Jack Edwards.

All pics courtesy of Jack’s Insta. His YouTube channel can be found here.

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