Seriously though, Bowland Tower is the best place to live in Lancs

How could you complain when you’re this close to Greggs?

In November, readers of The Lancaster Tab voted Bowland Tower as the ugliest building on campus. Everyone had a point that hulking column of bricks isn’t the prettiest thing here, but as a Bowland Tower resident, I’m here to defend its honour. Once you look past your initial visceral reaction to it, you might start to see something beautiful.

I’ve been living in Tower for a good four months, and I’m confident that it’s the best place to live in Lancaster. Argue with me all you want; you won’t change my mind. But I think I can change yours. Here are my four top reasons as to why Bowland Tower is top-tier accommodation and deserves better.


Let’s be honest; the location of Bowland Tower is probably its main draw. Living above Alexandra Square means you have easy access to basically everywhere that’s anywhere on campus. Library? Sultans? Spar? You got it. And who doesn’t want to live literal steps away from the Underpass? I’ve never had to haul my Aldi bags across campus because Tower is right there. And not that I’ve ever really been to any in-person lectures, but I’m sure it’s usually pretty convenient to be right in the middle of campus when you’ve overslept the morning of your nine am. 

Another reason that living in Tower is the best is watching all the drama unfold in Alex Square. I feel like I’m watching a bizarre, silent Love Island episode from my kitchen window. Yes, I can see you breaking up with your Freshers girlfriend over a Greggs sausage roll, and I saw you fall down the stairs when you were drunk. People-watching from the comfy chairs in the kitchen has become a hobby that I’m going to miss when I move out sorely. 


I do not doubt that there are other tall accommodations, but you’re fighting a losing battle if you compare heights with Bowland Tower. Sharpay Evans once said, “bigger is better and better is bigger; a little bit is never enough.” I want to think that this was a direct comment on Bowland Tower’s superiority. Being this high up gives you a bit of a God complex (which is something you need if you’re in Bowland, believe me) and I’ve only gotten stuck in the lift once in four months (I had a Greggs cheese and bean melt with me, it was fine). And I know that you get a nice sunset in Cartmel, but you honestly can’t beat the views from Tower. Look at that scenery. I think I’m in love.

Interior Design

Rising from the ashes like a late-60s-looking phoenix, Bowland Tower was completely refurbished in 2013, and you can tell. Some weird uni-specific perks include grey carpets (they go with everything!), fancy, fully tiled bathrooms and thick ceilings. This is a bit of a weird one, and I can’t speak much for the integrity of other accommodations, but I’ve certainly heard horror stories about paper-thin walls and ceilings. I can confirm that, in Bowland Tower, nobody can hear you scream. As far as I’m aware, the only time our neighbours have heard us was when we had an earsplitting Taylor Swift karaoke night with our windows open.

As well as super-thick ceilings, if you’re in Bowland Tower, there’s a one in five chance that you’ll have two windows (I know, I’m jealous too). Two windows equal twice the views, twice the windowsills to decorate with junk you got from IKEA, and twice the sunlight (essential during lockdown). 

Iconic Status

Finally, it’s time to admit that Bowland Tower is one of the university’s most recognised buildings (second only to the Chaplaincy Centre, but I don’t really know anyone who lives there). What do you see when you log into your Microsoft account? What’s the first thing you see when arriving at uni? Bowland Tower is Lancaster University. It’s ugly. It’s iconic. And it deserves your respect.

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