Category Archives: News

St. Chad’s Day 2019

On the 2nd of March every year, something very special happens on North Bailey, Durham. Think green, think 8am, think pots, pans, whistles and tradition. Think St. Chad’s Day. If Chadsians needed a reason to enjoy their weekend during summative season, this is it. Filled with a tight itinerary, Chad’s day is a day which all can enjoy. There is only one dress code: green. The morning began by meeting just before 8am, a sea of green illuminating the Cassidy Quad. With everyone ready and the JCR President Josh sat on an elevated chair, hoisted by Boat Club blades and carried by strong students, the parade to all Bailey colleges with the intention of making as much noise as possible began. Hatfield, Castle, John’s, Cuth’s: we may be small, but we are mighty.

 

After the procession, Chadsians alike had breakfast in Moulsdale Hall; green milk included. At 10:30 came the unique Cathedral Service, with various performances. Afterwards gave an opportunity for Chad’s alumni to meet in the SCR for a catch up and a hot drink, before the Palace Green race at 12pm.

11:59am saw the gathering of Chadsians on the start line, ready to sprint around Palace Green on the first chime of 12. For what, you may wonder? The college mascot goat costume, of course. Despite scratches, scrapes and close-losses, the Keeper of the College Goat emerged. Quite a different climate from last year, Palace Green was not as icy this year!

After all the exercise and a college lunch, Chad’s day afternoon quietens off, allowing some respite for the afternoon and evening ahead.

The late afternoon was filled with various sporting events, including Men’s football and a win for Chad’s Women’s Hockey. Chadsians then made their way back from Maiden Castle to participate in and watch Chad’s Family Fortunes. Following that, the battle for Mr and Mrs Chad’s proceeded, with participants fulfilling various tasks to claim their title, with last year’s Mr and Mrs Chad’s presenting this year’s competition to spectators.

The day draws to a close, the headphones are charged, the bar is getting busier and the inflatables are set up. Chad’s annual silent disco is ready to begin. Chadsians dance the night away. Midnight hits, it’s been a long day, and Chadsians are ready for bed. An eventful, bright and fun-packed day, St. Chad’s Day 2019 is over, until next year; when we’ll do it all again.

Celebrating Chad’s Women at the Ladies’ and Friends’ Formal

Last night at ‘Ladies’ and Friends’ formal’ we marked 30 years since women were first admitted as students to St Chads.  Thank you to our guest of honour, Chad’s alumna Sherin Gerami (who is the first woman to be permitted to represent Iran in the Triathlon) for such a motivational talk.  Your work is so inspirational and really encompasses our Chad’s ethos.

Dr Margaret Masson, our (first female) Principal, gave a brief account of the history of women being admitted in 1988.  She also paid tribute to the many female members of staff who have enabled the College to run from day-to-day since its founding in 1904 and expressed our gratitude to current female members of staff – Vicki, Linda, Catherine and Lesley – who were guests at the formal.  At the end of the meal, Julia Atherley, co-chair of Chad’s FemSoc  invited guests to contribute to ‘A Way Out’, an outreach and prevention charity which aims to engage, empower and equip vulnerable and excluded women, families and young people to live lives free from harm, abuse and exploitation and to reduce life limiting choices and behaviour.  We hope that everyone attending the formal had a great time celebrating the ladies and friends of St Chad’s…

 

 

“Building a better World”: St Chad’s 1918-1925

Thanks to Jenny Parker, St Chad’s Librarian and Archivist, a window onto Chad’s history was opened last Saturday. An exhibition of archives and photographs “Building a better World” focused on 1918-1925 through the experiences and careers of Chadsmen who had seen military action. The chapel too was open to visitors to view the War Memorial Reredos.  This was a time when St Chad’s celebrated it’s coming of age, rapidly expanded its student body and began to win sporting trophies and achieve unprecedented academic excellence.

The exhibition clearly demonstrated that the commitment to rebuilding society evident in the lives of Chadsmen of that era is still very evident today in the life choices of our more recent graduates.

 

 

JCR exec husts

The JCR exec husts are well under way now.  Congratulations to everyone who has run for a position; as always in Chad’s, this year’s candidates have been very strong and the husts have been a pleasure to watch, with many thought provoking topics being discussed.  With each new post elected, it’s exciting to see the new executive committee gradually emerging, and getting ready to lead their JCR through the next year.  During these times of change it’s reassuring to see Chad’s students come together, to strive towards their goals and to embrace this dynamic environment.

Chad’s 62nd Candlemas Ball

The 62nd Candlemas ball took place in the beautifully decorated grounds of Chad’s on Friday.

The Quad looked terrific

Mini-decs who had spent the week creating large pieces of artwork for the ball had their pieces adorning each room alongside the magnificent entertainments the committee arranged. The rooms in college were all transformed into worlds of pure imagination. Entertainments included a casino room in the SCR, an Oxygen bar in the JCR, a film room, bucking bronco, inflatable fighting ring, chocolate fountains and much more. The children’s ball pit in the Quad proved to be the most popular with teams of raucous Chadians playfully hurling balls at one another for the entirety of the night.

a fantastic meal..

The lighting display on the dance floor in the Dining hall was fantastic and survivors gathered there at the end of the night to eat pizza and participate in the survivors photo!

A tremendous amount of effort and planning went into creating a fantastic 62nd Candlemas which will be remembered as a magical evening.

For ever and ever.

 

Chad’s Celebrates Lunar New Year

On Sunday, 20 Chad’s students visited Newcastle to enjoy the Lunar New Year celebration. Second year student, Katya, shares her impressions of the visit:

Dragon Dance, Newcastle

“Hi, my name is Katya and I went to the Lunar New Year celebration. After witnessing the ‘Lion dance’ at Chad’s International Formal last year I was thrilled to see the ‘Dragon dance’ in the streets of Newcastle which involved more than 10 people dancing whilst holding a dragon puppet. This was followed by a picturesque performance of dancing and lighting small, red fireworks, accompanied by drums. The day concluded with a meal at the Sky Chinese Cuisine where we had the opportunity to try new dishes such as pork feet and chicken in bean sauce. Since we were all sharing food we had the opportunity to indulge in several interesting dishes and try Chinese tea. I am really grateful that the College sponsored this event because it allowed us to celebrate a new festival and explore a different culture.”

Thank you to Chris Peng and all who helped to organise this visit.

St Chad’s Syrian Refugee Outreach Project

As part of a small St. Chad’s outreach project, each week, a small group of St. Chad’s students venture out to the nearby town of Chester-le-street on an evening to help a family of Syrian refugees with their English language skills. I am incredibly glad to say I am one of those students. We open the gate and walk up the path of a semi-detached house. We are always greeted with smiling faces. This is the home of Muhammad, Amna, who are parents to Ahmad (22), Salah (18) and Rania (17).

But this has not always been home. Over notes about pronunciation, Amna tells me of her childhood in Syria, how she met Muhammad (above) and how they got married. When the conflict worsened in Syria, the family moved to Jordan. Ahmad (below, right) shows me some of his writing: a letter to a friend back in Jordan, telling them of his new home in the UK. Muhammad and Ahmad were once manual labourers in Jordan.

Now, their days are filled with Muhammad volunteering at the local Re-f-use Cafe and Ahmad working in catering at the University. Salah tells me of his school days in Syria, explaining how much he prefers his lessons at Durham New College. ‘The teachers respect you as a student,’ he states. Rania has recently been moved into the top set for her classes, Amna tells me with a beaming smile. Amna (below) enjoys cooking, and often brings out home bakes made from middle-eastern recipes, which are always very sweet, and always very delicious.

The family are all so keen to learn. They bounce off each other, we all laugh, over mispronunciations, the complexities of tenses, cognates, and when to use ‘those’, ‘these’, ‘that’, and ‘this’.

Being an hour or two and plenty cups of middle-eastern tea, these evenings are always modest, simple and heartwarming. The family are always so grateful. St. Chad’s engages in several ongoing outreach and volunteering projects throughout the academic year; one of which takes us as far as South Africa. With the current, uncertain political and international environment, this project brings a personal element to wider issues. And, for that reason, amongst many, it is incredibly rewarding and most certainly feels like Chad’s is making a difference as part of a bigger picture.

Burns Night Formal

Burns Night Formal last Thursday was fantastic! Freddie Bearn began the evening by piping in the guests, and Alex Milne gave a wonderful rendition of ‘To a Haggis’ and subsequently the meal began. The Catering Team did a marvellous job; the haggis and whisky gravy were delicious.

Once the meal had finished, Richard Penney delivered an excellent Toast to the Lassies and a witty retort was made by Isobel Clarke in her Toast to the Laddies!

Burns Night was a great opportunity for everyone to join in the evening’s jollities and to display their best tartan gear.  Mention must go to Sean Gallagher Gill who managed to sprout a bob of red hair for the evening.

The night finished with a jolly Ceilidh which was enjoyed by all!