Despite reports to the contrary, Fuzzy Ducks, the notorious Oxford club night is not finishing.
It had previously been rumored that the club night, once voted by FHM as the “easiest place to pull in Europe” was closing down due to declining popularity and local resident complaints. However Sam Zappi, owner of the Fuzzy Ducks brand says this is certainly not the case- to the relief of many Oxford students.
Rather, the night will be moving from the 02 Academy on Wednesday night to Wahoo nightclub instead.
A spokesman for Wahoo confirmed the move, saying: “We are excited and delighted to have Fuzzy Ducks joining us next term.”
The night will be continuing on Wednesday nights.
Reaction to the move has been mixed amongst students. Long time Fuzzy Ducks aficionado, and first year Oxford student Sabian Chauhan questioned the move of location, saying that to market Fuzzy Ducks to a different crowd would fundamentally change the nature of the event.
He said: “I think deciding to move the night is one of the worst possible moves they could have made; I for one certainly won’t be attending.” He added that his experiences at Fuzzies, as it is affectionately known by students, were unrepeatable.
Oxford Brookes student Charlotte Greenslade was more enthusiastic, saying: “Fuzzy Ducks is a great night that enables sports teams (and other students) to dress up and go out as teams. The perfect chance to let your hair down!”
The 02 have reportedly entered into a three year contract with the Oxford Brookes Student Union to replace Fuzzy Ducks with a new night, of which details will be released soon.
By Charles Walmsley
Two goals from captain Julian Austin secured a victory for the Blues that will also come as a welcome relief from their battle against relegation in the BUCS Midlands first division.
Playing under the floodlights at Iffley for the first time the Blues made several changes to the line-up that had lost 3-1 at Warwick two days previously, with Luke Deveraux and Ejike Onuchukwu given places in the starting line-up. The latter shone on the right wing, beating the opposition left back several times within the first ten minutes. It was therefore no surprise that he played a major role in shaping the first goal, winning the corner from which Austin volleyed home on the edge of the six yard box around 16 minutes into the game.
The lead was deserved; earlier Healy had seen a header cleared off the line whilst the midfield and attack were passing the ball around with ease in the Brookes half. A head injury to right back Thomas meant he left the field of play for treatment, returning minutes later with a bandage round his head, bringing images of Terry Butcher in Rome to mind. He channelled this almost immediately upon returning to the action, a brilliant sliding tackle stopping the Brookes number 9 from breaking through the defence.
The Blues were good at retaining their shape, restricting Brookes to long range efforts, one of which had Haigh beaten but came thundering back off the crossbar. Otherwise the Blues goal was largely unthreatened in the first half, with the greater impact coming from off the pitch and the various uses of the word ‘w****r’ issuing from the Brookes fans. On the pitch Brookes were simply too narrow, seemingly lining-up in a 4-2-3-1 that allowed Onuchukwu and Tomas Castrodopico to run into space down the wings and create chances that Healy and Austin failed to convert. It was only after half-time that they seemed to recognise this threat, causing the two wingers to run into dead ends and concede possession one too many times. This came at a cost though as their greatest threat, the number ten, was forced to move wider and track back more, leaving Brookes without a serious goal threat as successive chances for an equaliser presented themselves.
With Onuchukwu’s departure on the hour mark a different threat emerged for the Blues as Sam Donald relied less on pace and more on possession to fashion chances. Castrodopico’s corners caused problems in the Brookes defence again and again, with Deveraux testing the keeper from twenty five yards and Healy forcing several good saves before Austin once again found himself in space at the back post, allowing him to smash another volley over the keeper’s head and double the Blues’ lead.
15 minutes were left and Brookes had to react, but again they were frustrated by a formation that didn’t allow them possession in the middle, forcing them to work their way through a packed defence. Another long range shot teased the possibility of a close finish but it was nothing more than a speculative effort, in many way a metaphor for Brookes’ day; even the now customary streaker was left aimlessly running round as the stewards watched on bemused at the sight. As the game petered out a string of unnecessary and stupid challenges led to a flurry of yellow cards for Blues players, but the result was never under threat.
The Blues must now turn their attention to the final three games of the season and their bid to remain in the division. With the Varsity match on the horizon as well, the next month will define the team’s season.
We all know what it’s like to get landed with an unexpected bill for an overdue library book. It seems that, no matter how many reminders we set, or how many emails the library sends us, students across the country are failing abysmally at returning books on time.
Recently released figures show that British universities have raised almost £50m in fines over the past six years, with at least ten raising over £1m each.
Over the period since 2004/05, Oxford did not place in the top ten universities for income from fines. However, the figures suggest we might just be hanging on to the books indefinitely: Oxford came second only to Bucks New University for the number of missing books. The Bodleian said 20,923 books were unaccounted for – but with over nine million items this is unlikely to have made a significant dent in its holdings.
Precise figures were only released for the past three years, showing that the University took in a total of £411,588, with a decreasing income year-on-year.
Whilst the Bodleian Libraries have a standardised system varying from 20p per day to 50p per hour, depending on the type of loan, there is great variation between colleges. At Exeter, students are charged a flat-rate of £1 per book. But if someone else recalls it, students must pay £1 per day. Keble students pay 5p per book per day. Lincoln has its own “blacklist” for students with “very overdue” books.
The Bodleian said that “the income from fines goes to support the general funds of the Libraries”. But with an overall deficit of over £2.5m in 2009-10, the income from fines makes little impact on the Library’s funding. The Library added: “We consider that the system works well and there are currently no plans for major changes”.
Second-year Exeter College student Sophie Hatcher said that she “hated fines” because “the reminder comes four days early. That’s four days in which to forget it’s about to be overdue, and before you know it it’s too late.”
But James Misson, a second-year English student, said: “I think it’s definitely overpriced but that’s probably a good thing. Someone else having the book you’re looking for is far more annoying than having to pay a fine.”
Leeds topped the table, which was compiled from 101 universities’ responses to Freedom of Information requests, raking in almost £1.9m. Sophie O’Connor, a Leeds Geography student, said: “The most annoying thing is in the holidays when you can’t take a loan out for any period longer than a week and you have to keep renewing it.
“I had books out over Christmas, but if someone recalls your book then until you return it you can’t renew any other books you have. So it’s really difficult over the holidays as I can’t give it back and people keep recalling my books.”
Imperial had the smallest income at just over £26,000 – one seventieth of Leeds’ income. Thalmus Delonge, a medic at Imperial, said: “No one ever makes you pay. You can give a book back at machines, so it’s easy to get out of paying.”
Systems and pricing for fines vary hugely between universities. Amongst the most expensive are Durham and Oxford Brookes, where fines on short-term loans are £1 per hour, and at Edinburgh the charge is 2p per minute. At the other end of the scale, Portsmouth only charges 5p per day for a long-term loan while the majority charge between 20 and 30p.
One UCL student told how she was charged £20 for removing a book from the library by accident. “It was a mistake. If the alarms will catch you anyway, why fine you?”
At Edinburgh, a five day ‘grace period’ is used in which no fine is issued. But students who return books after the period are charged for it retrospectively. Westminster does not fine students at all, but rather bans them from libraries for the length of time that their book was overdue.
Several universities, including Oxford, do not allow students to graduate if fines are outstanding. The majority restrict access to library services once a limit has been reached, which varies from £5 to £40 of fines.