Newcastle Memories

With the CMRC conference taking place in Newcastle, it has brought back quite a few memories from the my days as a student there. So hearing about the research of Prof Julia Newton makes makes me proud to be have an alumnus of that great university.

I studied at the University from 1988 to 1991 and greatly enjoyed living in an exciting and vibrant city despite waning interest in the course I take back them. I had mild undiagnosed ME/CFS back in those days, i knew something was not quite right as I could not do as much as my fellow students. However my course was relatively undemanding so I survived. The problems came later as I tried to embark on a working career as I struggled to work a 7 or 8 hour week.

The city is rightly renowned as a party city with supposedly 100 000 hitting the nightspots at the weekend. The local population, the Geordies, have a distinctive dialect somewhere between the Scottish & Northern English ones.

One of my abiding memories was walking every day from the Castle Leazes Halls of Residences across the windswept Leazes Moor shivering with multiple layers in winter whilst locals walked past in t-shirts. The design of the halls was based on a Sweden women's prison and they were built on land which could not be built on due to subsidence as a result of underground mine workings. Somehow students were exempt from planning restrictions!

On the daily chilly walk I would pass the renowned medical School & the teaching hospital the Royal Victoria Infirmary (the RVI). You could tell who the medical students were in the Halls, they were the worried looking ones. Everybody else was relatively carefree but the meds knew that 10% of their number would be culled in any year no matter talented the cohort was. In contrast the dentists were a lot more uninhibited with a few them behaving like John Belushi in a frat boy comedy.

I left the city in July 1991 and have never returned since. Time to go back some time.
Likes: ahmo


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