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Chemistry Research, Durham University
Durham University
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Josephine butler college

Just wondering how many students starting this year got allocated into Josephine butler college and any previous students opinions of it.
I was at Butler from 2018-2021 - it's brill! There are always certain stereotypes / horror stories about all Durham colleges, but I genuinely can't think of anyone who had a bad time at Durham specifically because they were at Butler (which has been the case for some of my friends at Hatfield, Stephenson, Trevs, etc.). I put it down as my first choice college and got it, but I know a lot of people who got allocated elsewhere and made a request to come to Butler.

It's got a lovely bar and social space, and it's the only college where you're guaranteed your own room with an en-suite. Plus, it's the only college that's entirely self-catered, which I think is a massive bonus.

There are some downsides - for example, the 'library' is a bit rubbish (but imo, no college library is really that great and pretty much everyone will rely on the main university library at some point because of this). Other than this, I can't think of any major let downs at Butler.

Some people are after the 'Durham experience', meaning white tie balls and posh formals etc. - Butler lacks in this department a bit, but I view that as a good thing. The college still does regular formals and balls (maybe a formal a month?), but they're usually a bit more relaxed and have fun themes. They're also are WAY more affordable than other colleges - when I was there, a formal including a three course meal and a glass of wine cost roughly a tenner. It's a nice way to indulge in posh Durham culture, but also poke a bit of fun at it with fancy dress and stuff like that.

Also, because it's the cheapest college accommodation (I think?), it tends to attract the more 'normal' students. I'm sure you're aware that Durham Uni has a bit of a reputation for being a bit elitist - in my experience, you're way less likely to encounter snobs at the newer colleges, like Butler. This might not be important to you, but I found it really integral to me enjoying my time at Durham.
Chemistry Research, Durham University
Durham University
Durham
Visit website
Original post by ASLH0744
I was at Butler from 2018-2021 - it's brill! There are always certain stereotypes / horror stories about all Durham colleges, but I genuinely can't think of anyone who had a bad time at Durham specifically because they were at Butler (which has been the case for some of my friends at Hatfield, Stephenson, Trevs, etc.). I put it down as my first choice college and got it, but I know a lot of people who got allocated elsewhere and made a request to come to Butler.

It's got a lovely bar and social space, and it's the only college where you're guaranteed your own room with an en-suite. Plus, it's the only college that's entirely self-catered, which I think is a massive bonus.

There are some downsides - for example, the 'library' is a bit rubbish (but imo, no college library is really that great and pretty much everyone will rely on the main university library at some point because of this). Other than this, I can't think of any major let downs at Butler.

Some people are after the 'Durham experience', meaning white tie balls and posh formals etc. - Butler lacks in this department a bit, but I view that as a good thing. The college still does regular formals and balls (maybe a formal a month?), but they're usually a bit more relaxed and have fun themes. They're also are WAY more affordable than other colleges - when I was there, a formal including a three course meal and a glass of wine cost roughly a tenner. It's a nice way to indulge in posh Durham culture, but also poke a bit of fun at it with fancy dress and stuff like that.

Also, because it's the cheapest college accommodation (I think?), it tends to attract the more 'normal' students. I'm sure you're aware that Durham Uni has a bit of a reputation for being a bit elitist - in my experience, you're way less likely to encounter snobs at the newer colleges, like Butler. This might not be important to you, but I found it really integral to me enjoying my time at Durham.

That’s great then I am from a very working class background and i am quite worried due to the reputation of Durham that I won’t necessarily fit in so that’s kind of eased my worries a little bit. Thanks 😊
Original post by ASLH0744
I was at Butler from 2018-2021 - it's brill! There are always certain stereotypes / horror stories about all Durham colleges, but I genuinely can't think of anyone who had a bad time at Durham specifically because they were at Butler (which has been the case for some of my friends at Hatfield, Stephenson, Trevs, etc.). I put it down as my first choice college and got it, but I know a lot of people who got allocated elsewhere and made a request to come to Butler.

It's got a lovely bar and social space, and it's the only college where you're guaranteed your own room with an en-suite. Plus, it's the only college that's entirely self-catered, which I think is a massive bonus.

There are some downsides - for example, the 'library' is a bit rubbish (but imo, no college library is really that great and pretty much everyone will rely on the main university library at some point because of this). Other than this, I can't think of any major let downs at Butler.

Some people are after the 'Durham experience', meaning white tie balls and posh formals etc. - Butler lacks in this department a bit, but I view that as a good thing. The college still does regular formals and balls (maybe a formal a month?), but they're usually a bit more relaxed and have fun themes. They're also are WAY more affordable than other colleges - when I was there, a formal including a three course meal and a glass of wine cost roughly a tenner. It's a nice way to indulge in posh Durham culture, but also poke a bit of fun at it with fancy dress and stuff like that.

Also, because it's the cheapest college accommodation (I think?), it tends to attract the more 'normal' students. I'm sure you're aware that Durham Uni has a bit of a reputation for being a bit elitist - in my experience, you're way less likely to encounter snobs at the newer colleges, like Butler. This might not be important to you, but I found it really integral to me enjoying my time at Durham.


Original post by Emmapcollins
Just wondering how many students starting this year got allocated into Josephine butler college and any previous students opinions of it.

Hi there

This is a beneficial and genuine experience but to correct some of the things mentioned in this answer, Butler isn't the only self-catered college- there are others like Stevo, John Snow and South. As far as the affordability is concerned, Butler has recently come under the limelight for hosting a costly ball. This might be the first time that's happening but I'm just pointing out that Butler is not the only college that has affordable balls and formals.

I have not been able to afford some of my college events but many society events are much cheaper and interesting too. I'm attending a Disney soc ball instead of my college ball for this reason, so you can still enjoy the Durham experience without being caught up in expensive stuff. Plus some colleges do offer financial support to those who need it and you can contact the Butler student support team to discuss that.

-Himieka (Official DU Rep)
My son has been allocated JB for Computer Science. He's really happy as it was his first choice.

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