Hundreds of freshers left with no accommodation after King’s overbooks halls

One was put in Stratford show room to sleep for the night


Students across multiple King's residences were left in limbo after arriving to find there were no rooms left in their assigned halls.

Freshers arriving to Julian Markham House and Stamford Street Apartments were turned away by reception staff, and some were re-assigned to more expensive accommodation in Stratford.

"The day before move-in I was told I didn't have my room and King's moved me to Stratford, which is more expensive and further away. They fully fucked me over," one student told The King's Tab.

Second-year Anna, who was due to move into Stanford Street, told The King's Tab: "I have quite bad OCD, so I got SSA because I have my routine there from last year.

I arrived at 2:30am after getting an evening flight from NI, and was told that there was no room for me even though I have a contract.

"I had rung three odd days previously to tell them that I was arriving late in the evening and they'd said that was all good and the key would be there.

"Then they showed me a list of people with notes beside their names – all of whom had no longer got a room – and mine had 'Send to Stratford One'

"It was literally two security guards left to deal with the mess that had been left by allocations."

Anna told The King's Tab Stamford Street paid for her to get a taxi to Stratford at 4am, where she discovered they didn't have any free rooms either.

"After about forty minutes sitting in reception there I got put in their show room to sleep for the night. No key, no kitchen," she said.

Anna was then moved into Goldsmiths accommodation Quantum Court in Shadwell.

She told The King's Tab: "The uni are supposed to give me a travel card because I'm on Strand campus for the year and some financial reimbursement but no contact has come through yet."

A third-year student said: "I got given Angel Lane. I was emailed a contract, told how much rent would be and when I would need to pay it.

"I turned up and they told me King’s has overbooked, so they sent me to another accommodation.

"They offered me a discount in rent, but I still haven’t heard anything about this."

Freshers had received confirmation saying they had a place at their chosen residences, and had returned signed contracts detailing the terms of the lease.

Upon being told there were no rooms available, many were re-assigned to new rooms located in Stratford One.

Others have been placed in Orchard Lisle and Iris Brook – Post Grad accommodation on Guy's Campus.

Students left without accommodation on Monday evening were not immediately re-assigned residences and were instead sent to a Best Western hotel.

A fresher told The King's Tab: "When I was at Julian Markham last night one of the staff got a call from King's and was told anyone who arrived that evening would be sent to a hotel and assigned a residence later.

"They were going to send me to a hotel, but I had a friend at JM who I stayed with."

A member of the King's Residences team told one student she would receive £750 as "a goodwill gesture", and the taxi to her new accommodation would be covered by King's.

She told The King's Tab: "I asked someone to clarify over the phone if they meant they would cover my commute to uni all year.

"She said 'yes', they would pay for my travel all year."

The student added: "I asked if they would honour the rent price I was supposed to be paying.

"She said my rent would not change."

Members of staff from both Unite and Fresh Student Living said the King's Allocations Team hadn't been picking up the phone to students.

One member of staff at Julian Markham House told a fresher: "You're lucky that you got a room last night, people after you are being told that everywhere is fully booked.

"Every King's Residence, fully booked."

A King's spokesperson said: "We are very sorry that in some cases over the last few days some students have been allocated temporary accommodation.

"We are working closely with affected students to ensure they are housed. We are making arrangements to recognise and address any disruption caused including extra travel costs to those students."