Campus ducks, Jesticles and Hartley: What Soton students miss most about pre-Covid uni

Things just haven’t been the same without our weekly Quad Vods

It’s nearing a year since the beginning of the first lockdown in the UK. For some of us, this might feel like decades ago, and for others, just yesterday since we were enjoying ourselves on the dancefloor with no way of predicting what the next year had in store.

From clubbing to cuddling friends, The Soton Tab asked Soton students what they’ve been reminiscing about from pre-Covid uni life and here’s what you all had to say:

Solo walks on the common

The common – where half the population of Southampton can be found at any one time

Where everyone seems to be spending their time at the moment. Whilst the greenery and lakes are lovely, it’s also lovely to take a hungover stroll looking awful without seeing every. Person. You. Know. And why is everyone suddenly running too?

The campus ducks

A duck’s life on campus is so much simpler

It was always a mood lifter seeing these guys waddling about but there have been no reported sightings of them for awhile.  If anyone spots them, send me some photos – I need some ducky happiness in my life.

Sobar Tuesdays

£2 Quad Vods. Memory of your night? Non-existent.

I’ve almost forgotten about the rush to make it there before midnight to get my £5 rather than £6 ticket (that £1 saving is half a Quad Vod).

The Plant Pot

The bright little café in the heart of the SUSU building. A nice spot to have done work between lectures and grab a bit of vegan deliciousness- the fake pulled pork burger is an elite piece of food.  With all the greenery, it felt like a little paradise – I know you’ve stroked that wall of moss.

Not having to book a library slot

We <3 Hartley

You no longer have the freedom to just walk into Hartley because you feel like it, and walk out within the hour because you’ve decided you don’t actually want to do any work.  I miss the late night cramming, but maybe if you were hardcore (or silly) you’ve done a 24 hour session in the library. With the guards that walk around now, there’s something about them that makes you feel on edge for just trying to study. I booked a library slot – I promise!


Karaoke Thursday with your housemates was mandatory

Karaoke Thursdays for when you wanted to go out, but not out out, because you’re hungover from sports night and you’ve also got big plans for tomorrow, probably Juiced at Switch. But also a select few Soton students miss the challenge of downing as many pints as they can in the one hour gap between their lectures, because work is that bit more bearable (or for most, more difficult) when you’re six beers deep.

Bus journeys on nights out

Making friends with strangers might just be more fun than the event itself

Checking the UniLink app and seeing you’ve got three minutes to down your drink, take a wee and sprint to the bus stop is a feeling like no other. Soton students miss the fear of the bus driver spotting your open beverage under your jacket and making you pour it on the pavement. What a waste.  Then once you’re actually on safely, the inevitable chats and chants with strangers who are going to the same event as you are bound to result in you waking up in the morning to new additions to your Snapchat contacts.

Human contact on campus

Being on campus reminds me that I’ve actually got a degree to be completing

Although online lectures from your bed seem simpler, there’s something about being on campus that made the pre-Covid uni experience feel a bit more real. The brief smiles at someone you recognise from lectures, unexpectedly bumping into one of your best mates or just being reminded that our lecturers aren’t just faces on a screen but real people at the front of the room.

Jubilee Sports Centre

Not just a place for the sporty students but a facility for the Soton locals too

A haven for anyone on a sports team but also anyone else going for the gains, or maybe you just miss a chill evening at Aqua Zumba or a morning of yoga. Having actual league games in the sports hall was not only a way to get some healthy competition going,  but a win for your team was an excuse to get smashed after.


Every day of the week is a Jester’s day

I don’t really have to say much for this gem of a place. Cheap, cheerful and cheesy, Soton students miss trying not to spill our Jesticles on the crowded dancefloor and the inevitable end to the night that was every lad taking their tops off Baywatch-style. Not forgetting the intimate experience of sharing the twobicle in the toilet.

My Jesters shoes haven’t been worn for too long and I’m itching to get back to the Palace of Dreams.

Stress free Sainsbury’s trips

Daily trips to Sainsbury’s becoming more and more common

Portswood Sainsbury’s has always been a favourite for us students, but nowadays is a legitimate day out. But Soton students miss the stress-free trips. Have I got my mask? Do I know that person walking towards me? I can’t see but I’ll wave anyway. Oh, that wasn’t who I thought it was. Embarrassing.

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