Leeds Uni: An Edgycation

Has Leeds been labelled edgy for too long? “I want out!” argues SYD WILSON


‘Eternally Edgy Leeds’ will always be known for its house parties, ‘Edgy’ looks and scrunchies; but what actually is it that gives us this stereotype?

Yes, Leeds definitely has its own identity. If you stand outside the Union, you need more than two hands to count the number of black skinny jeans and Nike air max that walk past.

Then come the oversized sweatshirts, denim jackets (emphasis on oversized) and of course hair in a topknot (unisex nowadays but generalised as ‘Shit-Hair Leeds’ if you’re a boy). Of course the outfit couldn’t be complete without key accessories: the beanie, the backpack and the bindi.

Beanie, backpack - just missing the bindi.

Beanie, backpack – just missing the bindi.

But are these fashion choices actually ‘Edgy’? If you wear your Dad’s old denim jacket (most probably from Gap) isn’t that just resourceful and vintage? So what if the scrunchie has made a come back, Sporty Spice loved the scrunchie and I don’t think the term ‘Edgy’ ever existed in the Spice Girl’s vocab.

Doesn’t this just make us have a more interesting and varied fashion sense than other Unis? (Cue a Jack Wills gilet and pristine welly clad Exeter student walking past)

If Sporty Spice did it, why can't we?

If Sporty Spice did it, why can’t we?

Leeds Uni is well known for having an extensive choice of clubs, but is this also contributing to our ‘Edgy’ stereotype? Nights like Flux and Brotherhood or the latest house music stints in an abandoned warehouse have established themselves as the norm. These nights are equally contributing to our ‘Edgy’ identity.

Don’t forget there are just as many popular nights that are swept under the carpet in Leeds and the mainstream clubs like Warehouse, Mission and Fruity happen to be about as ‘edgy’ as an orange.

'Shit Hair Leeds' at its best.

‘Shit Hair Leeds’ at its best.

What makes us so different from Manchester, Nottingham and Newcastle anyway? Aren’t we all students cut from the same cloth? Ranging from the private school kids keying ket in the corner of a house party, to the sports addicts that only ever wear their stash around campus?

Do these factors actually make us ‘Edgy’ or is it just a stereotype that other people are trying to force upon us? Doesn’t it just make us more exciting and less predictable than other Universities? I’d rather go to a Uni where students have more option than one night out (have you been to Durham?) and have moved on from the gilet and Uggs era.

Although some students may thrive off it, Leeds University needs to shake this ‘Edgy’ stereotype, as we are in fact a very well rounded university. (Like what I did there?)