A definitive guide to all the Exeter slang you need to know

Your guide to avoiding sharks

Exeter Uni, the home of some impressive alumni, some of the most exhausting hills in England and mostly, some truly odd slang. But fear not Freshers (and some third years who are too scared to ask), because we’ve rounded up both the general university and Exeter-specific slang used around campus, so you’ll be in the know.


Overheard is a Facebook page which will quickly become your holy grail: from finding TP tickets and cheap course books, to trying to find your phone which you lost in the blur of Cheesy Tuesday, it holds pretty much all the info you need.


Used as both a compliment and as an insult, BNOC stands for Big Name on Campus –  basically, just people who are well known, popular or infamous.


Pres is just pre-drinking before you go clubbing: essential for both your bank balance and your sanity.


Yelled at pretty much every sports social,  “EG” just means empty glass. Once you’ve downed your drink, you tap it against your forehead to indicate it’s empty – do this at every Pres, and you’ll avoid getting a forfeit for not doing it.


The Imperial – the biggest Spoons in Exeter. About a five to ten minute walk away from most Freshers’ accommodation and main campus, it’s definitely one worth knowing. A huge pub garden and cheap drinks – what more do you need?


Thankfully, nothing to do with toilet paper, but one of the most popular clubs in Exeter: Timepiece. With multiple floors, a huge staircase and a secondary pub (Old Timers) inside it, TP is beloved by all Exeter students. Tickets – especially for a Wednesday or Friday are like gold-dust, and can often be found being sold for around five times their original price on Overheard.


Ah, the Lemmy – or to use its full name, the Lemon Grove is the only club on campus – a mere one minute walk from some accommodations. Luckily it’s back and better than ever this year, having been subjected to Covid Closure since mid 2019. The Lemmy’s Lost Saturdays are returning too, with tickets being released 18th August at 5pm.


A shark is an older student – usually third year or above – who tries to yet with younger students – namely freshers. If you find yourself getting with a third year in Freshers’ Week, my apologies, but you have been well and truly sharked.


To be avoided when possible, a “shoey” is a shot drunk from a shoe. Yes, it’s as bad as it sounds.


Luckily nothing to do with drugs or money as some students first thought, but something much more wholesome. Stash is the personalised gear up for grabs from societies; think logo jumpers and 3/4 zips, anything really that declares you’re a member of a random uni club.


Short for Pennsylvania Court, Penny C is one of the university accommodations, and coincidentally the home of the largest collection of mullets and signet rings you will find on campus.


Again, luckily nothing to do with mountaineering, hiking or any outdoor exertion, but instead another Exeter club. Famous for its “Indie Nights” and unmatched vibes, Cavern is definitely a place to add to your uni bucket list.


Short for Lafrowda, Laf is one of the biggest Freshers’ accommodations on campus with around 26 different blocks and the home to some of the best flat parties around.


Basically a word meaning posh or bougie, you’re likely to find a lot of it in Exeter, especially lingering around Penny C and Holland Hall.


Stacked it simply means having fallen down a flight of stairs, usually when drunk and always in an embarrassing way. Thanks to TP’s massive, curved staircase, many a student has stacked it on a night out, usually when attempting to run from the loos back to the dance-floor as soon as they hear Old Town Road come on.


Although as slang goes this does have a *very* different meaning, in Exeter ‘top top’ usually means the top floor of TP.


One thing Exeter is famous for is its hills. After around one month living (and walking) in Exeter, you will have a whole new appreciation for flat areas. Although Forum Hill is quite a challenge, especially when slightly hungover on a Monday morning, Cardiac Hill takes the crown as the deadliest hill in Exeter. Located between Birks and campus, be prepared to be a breathless sweaty mess by the top of it.


Less worrying than it sounds, a “venom” is a drink served at TP – infamous for its high alcohol content, mixing of shots and VKs, and mostly, for its memorable bright green colour.

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