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Chemistry Research, Durham University
Durham University
Durham
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Picking a Durham College

Hi! I recently firmed Durham for Psychology and was wondering which college to pick. When I went on an open day at the start of Year 13, I fell in love with Cuths. However, that was quite a while ago, as I am now on a gap year. Although I loved it at the time, the idea of what I want in a college has changed. Ideally, I want to go self-catered and have gowned formals. I'm not fussed about having an ensuite or the distance of the college to my lectures. I love the sound of South, but since it isn't that established yet, I can't figure out the vibes of the college. Any knowledge of what the college is like or recommendations of others would be greatly appreciated :smile:
Original post by highwayhearts
Hi! I recently firmed Durham for Psychology and was wondering which college to pick. When I went on an open day at the start of Year 13, I fell in love with Cuths. However, that was quite a while ago, as I am now on a gap year. Although I loved it at the time, the idea of what I want in a college has changed. Ideally, I want to go self-catered and have gowned formals. I'm not fussed about having an ensuite or the distance of the college to my lectures. I love the sound of South, but since it isn't that established yet, I can't figure out the vibes of the college. Any knowledge of what the college is like or recommendations of others would be greatly appreciated :smile:
Hi there

Congratulations on your offer and confirming Durham!

Since you want a self-catered college, your college list automatically narrows down quite a bit. Currently, only 6 colleges are self-catered- South, John Snow, Butler, Stephenson, Hild Bede and Cuths (partially). Most of these will also have ensuite rooms, which is a plus. Out of these, John Snow, South and Butler have gowned formals. South and John Snow have fairly recently developed buildings and share some common facilities at The Hub. They also have the best college gym out of all 17 colleges (it reflects in the membership price obviously).

I know South isn't very established, but it still has really good facilities (I might be a bit biased as I'm from South). Themed formals are held quite often alongside regular events like karaoke nights in the college bar. You can read more about life at each of the colleges in these student blogs- Why South College? ; Life at South ; Life at Butler ; Life at John Snow. Also there's some fabulous content on @thedurhamstudent TikTok page about events at colleges. For instance:
Butler Charity Fashion Showcase ; South College Winter Ball ; South College Day ; Psychology Ball

Also, I'd strongly recommend booking onto one of our upcoming post-offer visit days and checking out these colleges for yourself :smile:

-Himieka
Chemistry Research, Durham University
Durham University
Durham
Visit website
South and John Snow are really similar in terms of facilities and accommodation. If you're worried about how established it is, John Snow has a much longer history, its just that its changed the location of its accom permanently after the site was finished. South and John Snow do share the Hub which is where gowned formals are held, but your overall decision will depend on how much you want tradition as part of your college life. Also remember that your college allocation is based on ranks, so I'd recommended putting both of these in your top few if you're looking for self catered and owned.

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