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10 tips for surviving your year in Castle Leazes from someone who just about managed it

Wear shoes at all times

Castle Leazes can be a make or break experience for Newcastle freshers. Known as the social hub of the student city, some people love it and some people hate it. When searching for a comparison, a jungle came to mind – it's a little bit wild, with pecking orders, food chains and thousands of unspoken rules.

As you embark on your year in the Cow Field, follow these survival tips and you'll be sure to be fine. And remember, although it may appear that way, no one survives Leazes that easily.

Don't be fake to fit in, you will find your tribe

Castle Leazes cliques can challenge that of an American high school. You just have to learn to run with it, remember your vibe attracts your tribe so, however tempting, don’t pretend to be anything you aren’t. The best kind of friendships don’t come from holding their hair while they vomit in club loos and donating them your favourite hair tie, it actually comes from the day after when you are both hung-over, binge watching Gossip Girl and recapping the giggles of the night before.

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It's a myth that you're only allowed to get your clothes off Depop

What to wear… the ironic truth of Castle Leazes fashion is that everyone wants to ‘make a statement’ whilst actually blending into the army of puffer jackets, vintage sports sweaters, flares and trainers. Just remember, it’s easy to get swept along in the Castle Leazes uniform but if you dress unapologetically like you, it says a lot more about who you are.

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Make friends in the 'fresh air'

Hang out in the smoking area, even if you don't actually smoke. Make smoker’s small talk about how you hate lectures or had a BIG night out. Bonus points if you are able to roll, have tobacco from a different country or a windproof lighter.

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Expect a kitchen experience like nothing you have ever seen before

Never ever go shoe less into your kitchen. Don't leave tasty nibbles in the fridge like the Babybel's or the treats your Mum just sent you; you'll never see them again. The chances of you actually cooking are very slim so if I was you I would leave you newly brought pots and pans in their box, ready to be finally used in second year.

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You'll make the shoe mistake once.

Follow the rules when it comes to the dining room

Within Castle Leazes sucking up and a smile can go a long way, not so with the dinner staff, never take more than your allotted amount and for goodness sake don’t risk two puddings. Trust me, it’s not worth the public humiliation.

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Remember these corner shop golden rule

Ah Londis. So Londis is a double edged sword, on one hand it is literally the key for your survival, the flipside is the social anxiety of the trip. Firstly, don’t go alone and secondly, remember; only buy socially acceptable things: for instance, a packet of amber leaf, some beers or munchies snacks. Tampons, loo paper and razors must be saved for another shopping trip (the guy you kind of like will queue behind you, karma is a bitch like that).

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Talk about a 'life changing' experience in Asia every single day

Talk about your gap year, if you haven’t taken one; pretend you volunteered in Cambodia or something. It's practically impossible to walk between buildings at Leazes without hearing someone reminiscing on that time they washed an elephant in Thailand. Also extra points if you have gap year garments to prove it.

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If you're going to DJ, know your Drum and Bass from your Jungle

Basically, don't let on Taylor Swift is one of the most played artists on your Spotify and your favourite playlist is 'Sad Songs to Sing to in the Car'. Research events so when asked if your going to Cirque you don't respond with something along the lines of loving the circus but hadn't heard about it coming to Newcastle. You obviously KNOW that it's an event in digi but actually you find it a bit mainstream and would rather go to Cosmic.

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Conquer the Cow Field

Walking through the Cow Field will become the ‘Castle Leazes' catwalk’. We all aspire to have the ‘I don’t give a fuck’, places to be, sophisticated walk. My tips for this; get over your phobia of cows, call your mum (or anyone who will answer the phone- a great opportunity to catch up with that long lost friend) and tactfully avoid eye contact with the promo people. If this isn’t possible, just smile, say yes you are going out and take the wristbands. You never know when someone will ask you for a wristband that doesn’t even give you £1 off. Oh and finally, WATCH OUT WHEN IT’S ICY.

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Yeah, this girl has cracked it.

Be washing savvy, that’s all I’m saying

We all hate laundry at the best of times, but fuck; laundry at Castle Leazes takes it to a whole new level. If your clever, you’ll have enough clothes to last a month before going home to get it all washed, if your not, you’ll attempt to do your washing on a Wednesday or Sunday afternoon, forget your detergent and drop most of your underwear on the floor whilst attempting to move it from a washer to a dryer.

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3am (the ideal time)