Fairfax House, University of York

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ilickbatteries
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#1
Report Thread starter 11 years ago
#1
Any current/former residents on here? I have a few questions...

1. Is the house awkwardly far away from the university? It's only about half a mile from my calculations, but with the vast majority of students being directly on campus, how did you find the distance? Did you feel somewhat excluded from university life as a whole?

2. What is the accommodation like? I've seen a few pictures on here, but the university website is a bit lacking, in all honesty. A friend of mine used to live in a big Georgian house and she said in the winter it was absolutely freezing.

I've also heard a lot of bad things about the kitchens, are they really that bad?

3. What are the facilities at Fairfax like? Obviously I'm not expecting a bar or anything due to its size, but what does it actually have?

4. If given the choice, would you have rather lived on campus?

Thanks
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Sariya
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#2
Report 11 years ago
#2
(Original post by ilickbatteries)
1. Is the house awkwardly far away from the university? It's only about half a mile from my calculations, but with the vast majority of students being directly on campus, how did you find the distance? Did you feel somewhat excluded from university life as a whole?
It's a bit isolated, but "half a mile" would be stretching it- it's five minutes' walk to campus' edge, tops.

You can feel like you're living in something of a bubble occasionally, but it's really no trouble at all if you're prepared to, y'know- make friends outside your accommodation.

(Original post by ilickbatteries)
2. What is the accommodation like? I've seen a few pictures on here, but the university website is a bit lacking, in all honesty. A friend of mine used to live in a big Georgian house and she said in the winter it was absolutely freezing.
The accommodation, as I said in my PM, is quite lovely. Wonderful views, comfortable rooms, and decent facilities- more to the point, it's far prettier than any other accommodation around. :p:

(Original post by ilickbatteries)
I've also heard a lot of bad things about the kitchens, are they really that bad?
You'll cope just fine- don't worry about the kitchens as an issue. The only photographs on TSR thus far've been of the smallest, grottiest kitchen- which is about thirty seconds' walk away from two far larger, better equipped kitchens that're generally kept in reasonable nick.

(Original post by ilickbatteries)
3. What are the facilities at Fairfax like? Obviously I'm not expecting a bar or anything due to its size, but what does it actually have?
Breakfast (8:30-9:30). Worthwhile if you feel so inclined.

Past that?
A rather large, comfortable common room of its own (incl. Pool Table, sofas, a quiz machine and a table or two), a TV room (large television, sofas), a Reading Room (a bit useless- shut after 5PM, thanks to some arcane reasoning on the University's part), a couple of balconies, a bike cellar, and some quite lovely grounds.

Also, about two minutes' walk from some decent shops, ten minutes' walk from the town centre, and about fifteen minutes' walk to Morrisons/Waitrose.

(Original post by ilickbatteries)
4. If given the choice, would you have rather lived on campus?
Yep.
But my view's distinctly in the minority, quite frankly. I'd have quite liked to be able to just roll out of bed and into the library- and being closer to college events would have been a nice change. But those are small quibbles set against Fairfax's many plus points.
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TruckBear
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#3
Report 11 years ago
#3
I'd echo most of what AirRaven said, except emphasise one particular plus point of living in Fairfax: the community spirit there is second to none. You get great common areas, a communal breakfast and open access to all corridors and kitchens. It's worth living there just for that aspect alone.
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ilickbatteries
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#4
Report Thread starter 11 years ago
#4
(Original post by AirRaven)
It's a bit isolated, but "half a mile" would be stretching it- it's five minutes' walk to campus' edge, tops.

You can feel like you're living in something of a bubble occasionally, but it's really no trouble at all if you're prepared to, y'know- make friends outside your accommodation.



The accommodation, as I said in my PM, is quite lovely. Wonderful views, comfortable rooms, and decent facilities- more to the point, it's far prettier than any other accommodation around. :p:



You'll cope just fine- don't worry about the kitchens as an issue. The only photographs on TSR thus far've been of the smallest, grottiest kitchen- which is about thirty seconds' walk away from two far larger, better equipped kitchens that're generally kept in reasonable nick.


Breakfast (8:30-9:30). Worthwhile if you feel so inclined.

Past that?
A rather large, comfortable common room of its own (incl. Pool Table, sofas, a quiz machine and a table or two), a TV room (large television, sofas), a Reading Room (a bit useless- shut after 5PM, thanks to some arcane reasoning on the University's part), a couple of balconies, a bike cellar, and some quite lovely grounds.

Also, about two minutes' walk from some decent shops, ten minutes' walk from the town centre, and about fifteen minutes' walk to Morrisons/Waitrose.



Yep.
But my view's distinctly in the minority, quite frankly. I'd have quite liked to be able to just roll out of bed and into the library- and being closer to college events would have been a nice change. But those are small quibbles set against Fairfax's many plus points.
(Original post by TruckBear)
I'd echo most of what AirRaven said, except emphasise one particular plus point of living in Fairfax: the community spirit there is second to none. You get great common areas, a communal breakfast and open access to all corridors and kitchens. It's worth living there just for that aspect alone.
Cheers lads, very much appreciated.

Just one question though.

What is it like in the winter? Despite living in a ridiculously cold place myself, I cannot stand living in a cold house. I wouldn't mind the walk to campus, but I wouldn't want to live in a cold house again.

Also - I've just been told it's pretty much male only accommodation. Is this true?
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Sariya
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#5
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#5
(Original post by ilickbatteries)
Cheers lads, very much appreciated.

Just one question though.

What is it like in the winter? Despite living in a ridiculously cold place myself, I cannot stand living in a cold house. I wouldn't mind the walk to campus, but I wouldn't want to live in a cold house again.
Don't worry about the heating. Fairfax is perfectly fine in winter, as I recall- I had an enormous room, and it still stayed more than bearable.
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ilickbatteries
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#6
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#6
(Original post by AirRaven)
Don't worry about the heating. Fairfax is perfectly fine in winter, as I recall- I had an enormous room, and it still stayed more than bearable.
Ah good.

I've also been told it's nearly male only accommodation. This surprised me. Is it true?
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Sariya
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#7
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(Original post by ilickbatteries)
Ah good.

I've also been told it's nearly male only accommodation. This surprised me. Is it true?
Complete twaddle.

The ground floor's male-only- that's it. The gender ratio's pretty much 50:50, when the rest of the building's taken into consideration.
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ilickbatteries
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#8
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(Original post by AirRaven)
Complete twaddle.

The ground floor's male-only- that's it.
The gender ratio's pretty much 50:50, when the rest of the building's taken into consideration.
Ah, that must have been where they got it from. Thanks.
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TruckBear
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#9
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I can confirm that it's absolutely fine in the winter. In fact, I turned my radiator off for the entire year, because it just didn't need to be on.

And yes, nowhere near male only.
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basil howard
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#10
Report 5 years ago
#10
I spent 3 wonderfully happy years living in Fairfax. Perfectly situated for both campus and York, and the Queen Vic just down the road! Mind you, that was nearly 40 years ago...
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rbaustin
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#11
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For current people looking at it.

Would recommend living somewhere else.

We had a hole in the ceiling of our bathroom, very size able, and it took them a month to fix it.

It was rather loud as an accommodation as you're not on campus so people don't stop being loud very often.

There's no pool table or quiz machine currently. - at least not when I stayed there.

A lot of societies will use it as a place to have socials as it is off campus and not monitored at all, so they use it as an excuse to be loud.

Massive ladybird infestations from like February to July, probably longer but that is when I moved out.

There was an exploding pipe in one room, which flooded the persons room, the hallway, the hallway beneath and the common room at one point.

The kitchens are tiny, I shared a very small kitchen between seventeen people, and people use the kitchen and sit on the floor as a social area rather than a kitchen, which makes it very difficult to actually cook in there.

There is never any room for food in the fridge or freezer in the kitchen, so you will end up having to put it in a fridge in a random hallway.

Also, it is opposite a primary school, so random people will park in the driveway especially in the morning and afternoon for pick up, and they never look where they are going, so you have to be careful. They are told to not park there, but they do anyway.

It is catered, but only on mornings, on nights you have to go to the Vanbrugh Nucleus for tea.

Takeaway drivers always seem to have a hard time finding it.

We also had a big problem with random breaking in as it was a big accommodation, most people didn't know everyone, and therefore random people often just got let in.

Freezing in winter.However, it is closest to town and the grounds are quite nice, but people usually just use it for smoking.
Last edited by rbaustin; 2 years ago
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JT_888
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#12
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#12
(Original post by ilickbatteries)
Any current/former residents on here? I have a few questions...

1. Is the house awkwardly far away from the university? It's only about half a mile from my calculations, but with the vast majority of students being directly on campus, how did you find the distance? Did you feel somewhat excluded from university life as a whole?

2. What is the accommodation like? I've seen a few pictures on here, but the university website is a bit lacking, in all honesty. A friend of mine used to live in a big Georgian house and she said in the winter it was absolutely freezing.

I've also heard a lot of bad things about the kitchens, are they really that bad?

3. What are the facilities at Fairfax like? Obviously I'm not expecting a bar or anything due to its size, but what does it actually have?

4. If given the choice, would you have rather lived on campus?

Thanks
1. A short walk away from Campus West (main campus) via some cycle/footpath and the walk/cycle over isn't too bad, you'll get used to it. You can also catch the bus 66 to campus and you get free travel between the campuses anyways. No, I didn't feel excluded from uni life as a result of technically being off-campus.

2. On the inside, there is three floors (including the ground floor) and not all of the rooms are of the same size - there's a small wardrobe and a sink in each room. On some floors, the kitchens are really really tiny meaning that the fridge/freezer is actually located in the corridor and there's just about enough room for a person or two to cook. The bathrooms are a mix of bathtub and shower (depends what floor you're on) and they get deep cleaned once every weekday on top of a quick daily clean on weekdays. Cleaning, in general, is obviously ramped up in the light of Covid-19.

3. There's a small dining room at Fairfax which serves light, continental breakfast and if you want cooked breakfast, you're more than welcome to go to Vanbrugh Dining Hall but make sure you scan your card at the till. As for other facilities, there is a study room, a TV room and a smaller room with sofas in it. To the rear of the building, there's a secure bike shed and some parking spaces next to where the bins are. Very handy is the onsite laundry room and Circuit Laundry are replacing their washing machines and dryers which hopefully means better service and experience of doing the laundry.

4. Yes and no - I know this isn't helpful. Yes, in terms of the fact that I prefer to be self-catered rather than catered but being catered was actually nice because I got to meet a lot of people that way over a meal and it took away the stress of having to cook after a long day at uni. Also, I'd rather have a decent size kitchen as I like to cook and be in a proper flat - in Fairfax, you aren't split into flats but you are allocated a kitchen to share with others. No, you're quite close to town, literally within walking distance and Lidl and Morrisons on Foss Islands aren't too far away - the perfect place to do your food shopping. Rent for the accommodation is one of the cheapest at the uni and if you're eligible for the York Bursary, the bursary money will go towards your rent.

Hope this helps.
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Anonymous #1
#13
Report 1 year ago
#13
Would current residents recommend it as a first choice? I'm hoping to study History on West Campus, so a room in Vanbrugh College itself was the best option since the other self-catered, ensuite colleges are unavailable, but I'm a bit skeptical about all the stories of water leaks and random people entering the flats?
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Anonymous #1
#14
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#14
(Original post by Anonymous)
Would current residents recommend it as a first choice? I'm hoping to study History on West Campus, so a room in Vanbrugh College itself was the best option since the other self-catered, ensuite colleges are unavailable, but I'm a bit skeptical about all the stories of water leaks and random people entering the flats?
Fairfax is my second choice by the way^ - sorry I should have specified.
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