naked calendar

Merton modesty donated to charity

Merton modesty donated to charity

Students from Merton have defied claims that ‘fun goes to die’ at their college by creating a naked calendar for charity.

The calendar for 2013 was created in Trinity Term of last year as a fundraising initiative for the JCR’s nominated charities. It features photographs of fully nude students with various props placed in tactical positions.

Each month of the calendar is given over to a different group or society from the college, such as the Politics Society, the Law Society, the JCR Exec and the Women’s Cricket Team.


Jonny Carver, a second-year Historian at Merton, said: “Initially, the prospect of being naked in college was a bit daunting, and then to make things worse it was a freezing cold early morning and raining hard! Ultimately though it was a good laugh and I was happy to do it knowing that lots of other people in college were doing it as well and it was for charity!”

He added: “Although it may come at the expense of my modesty, I would urge people to buy a copy as it’s for a good cause! Combined with the fall in the Norrington Table, hopefully a calendar full of sexy naked Mertonians will help change the way people think about Merton!”

Mike Geeson, a second-year Chemist who also appeared in the calendar, said: “Like Jonny I was a bit worried about the cold outdoors, and that people might judge my fast waning manhood!

“Obviously, the naked calendar experience wouldn’t be complete without one of the guys running off with another’s clothes once the photo had been snapped. Seeing the unfortunate victim chase around our college, naked as the day he was born, was probably the highlight.”

Jezah Khamisa, a first-year Historian, echoed this by claiming: “The calendar clearly defies the idea that fun goes to die at Merton.”

It was not only the students who stripped for charity. The Merton JCR mascot, “Monkey”, also appears in all thirteen of the photos (including the front cover).

He was originally scheduled to appear clothed, but the JCR Exec insisted that, in the interests of fairness, his t-shirt was removed.

Laura Simmons, a third-year Modern Languages student who was the designated photographer for calendar, said: “It was fun to shoot – I had never done naked photos with more than one person in them before and it was a great experience, if a little daunting, especially when it came to the male drinking societies.”

She added: “We had a few incidents with amused onlookers – one visiting chaplain to Merton was slightly surprised at seeing six very lightly clad girls in Merton gardens at 8am.

“We tried to choose early morning time slots to avoid this, and people were only ever naked for about five minutes, as we set the shots up with them clothed beforehand.”

But Simmons reassured any faint-hearted customers that the calendar would be in good taste.  “All the photos are in black and white,” she explained, and “all necessary parts are well hidden. I held an absolute “no pubes” approach – at least on show.”

Ayesha Jhunjhunwala, a PPE Finalist at Merton, was enthusiastic about the project: “A large proportion of college ended up in the calendar. I think the idea was just to have a bit of fun.”

She added: “I don’t really think there was any agenda behind it. It was just a way to raise money. I don’t think anyone felt pressurised. I know a lot of people who opted out of it. It was something that was taken lightly.”

The money raised will be split between the JCR’s four chosen charities: Jacari, which helps local children from ethnic minorities learn to read and write English, the Wolvercote Young People’s Club, AMEND, which helps those affected by multiple endocrine neoplasia and the Oxford Wednesday Soup Kitchen for the homeless.


PHOTO/ Laura Simmons

Teddy Hall bears all

Teddy Hallers across Oxford will soon be seen proudly bearing Teddy Bear hand stamps and clutching naked calendars after this weekend’s JCR meeting.

The two successful motions secured funding for a Teddy Hall naked calendar, the proceeds of which will go to Cancer Research, and a Teddy Hall Teddy Bear hand stamp for entry into bops and other events.

The Teddy Bear hand stamp motion was passed unanimously, but the Naked Calendar motion was amended and then passed. Originally the motion requested £500 from the JCR, but after some discussion the financial burden was redistributed so that funding would come jointly from both the charities account and the JCR account.

The naked calendar was proposed by Bronte Paice and seconded by Jessica Teal, who sent out an email following the motion’s success inviting students “to ‘Bear’ all for charity.”

“We would love to get as many societies involved as possible and if we’re lucky enough to have more than 12 willing to participate I’m sure we can work around this to fit as many in as possible.”

There will even be space for particularly enterprising individuals who aren’t directly connected to a society, but who are still keen to get involved: “If you’re keen to do you’re bit for charity but are not a member of any teddy hall society just let us know and we’ll fit you in.”

The pair stressed that the naked calendar would only involve “implied nudity.” Bronte said: “I must add that the photos will be tasteful and that there will be no full frontal nudity, only implied with props!”

Angela Dudley, Teddy Hall’s JCR president, said: “the meeting on Sunday went very well, there was unanimous agreement for both motions. The hand stamp will be a great way to speed up entry to events and be much better than a marker pen! The Naked Calendar is an exciting venture to raise money for Cancer Research and will feature the JCR Committee – watch this space!”

Teddy Hall students hope that the Teddy Bear hand stamp will speed up entry to events, enhance community spirit, and be a great reminder of the night. The motion insisted that “everyone will want one.”

James Arwyn-Jones, who seconded the motion, said: “I think it would be an absolute pleasure to bear our stamp for a Teddy Hall event. When you take a moment to paws and think about it, it will help us avoid the grizzly situation of having to write SEH on people’s hands, which is just un-bear-able!”