Coming up: Clerkenwell Vintage Fashion Fair

Whether fashion is part of your studies or vintage is part of your wardrobe, make the Clerkenwell Vintage Fashion Fair part of your September!

Clerkenwell Vintage Fashion Fair’s Vintage Collections fair takes place on Sunday 14th September 2014 from 11am until 5pm at the Old Finsbury Town Hall, Rosebury Avenue, London, EC1R 4RP. 

Entry is £4 for public and £2 for students.

If you’re not tempted enough, then…

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Things to do before you arrive

Coming to London (possibly for the first time) is as scary as it is exciting. So we’ve put together a series of helpful tips to get you through the transition. This week we’re focusing on what to do before you get here.


Enrol Online

By now you should have received information from the university about how to enrol online. It’s important to do this before you arrive to start your course as you will need evidence of enrolment to get your student card, which you will need to enter the buildings for lectures. If you’re confused about this at all just email your course contact for help.


If you need student finance or a visa to study here then make sure that you get these sorted out before you come. The student loans company has lots of information on the website to guide you as does the government website.


Make sure that your bank accounts are all in order and that you have all the details stored in a safe place. You will guarenteed need some amount of money for something almost immediately so ensure that you’re always able to access your bank account and it’s a good idea to set up online banking. Check out how to manage your money better here.


London is a beautiful city to get lost in but that’s not much comfort if you’re running late for something! If you’re at all unsure about what to do then it can be a good idea to plan out some of your most useful journeys (such as from your accommodation to your campus) ahead of time so that you’ll always be in the right place at the right time. For tips on this check out our transport post.


It’s a good idea to not only take your mobile phone with you when you’re out and about but also to memorise or write down the important contact numbers just in case you lose your phone or run out of battery. That way you’ll always be able to contact someone in an emergency.


This might sound like overkill but these are all helpful things to consider before making the move to London. Don’t worry if you forget anything as it won’t be the end of the world and if you do need help with anything then the SU advice team is always here for you :)


Freshers: What’s on this Week?

Woohoo! It’s officially the start of our amazing array of Freshers Events! And to help you plan the maximum fun possible here’s a rundown of what’s on this week:

Halls Welcome Party

Welcome to your new home. The hall welcome party is for you and your flatmates to meet the rest of your hall. We’ll throw in pizza’s, drinks and loads of fun games including twister, giant connect 4 and giant jenga. There’s no charge - this event is totally free! We’ll also give you advise on the best local bars and clubs to carry on the party.

Saturday 6th and Sunday 7th Sept, in Your Common Room @7pm


Tune in next week for the next round of fun and view all of the lovely Freshers Events on our amazing Calendar. Might as well make that your homepage for the next 2 months really.


Cultural London on the cheap

One of the perks of studying in London is the abundance of cultural events and institutions on offer, but although many are free some do come at a cost.

Fortunately, there are plenty of places that offer student discounts and freebies!  Whilst this isn’t a comprehensive guide, it’s a good solution until you can star in your own reality TV show or marry a rapper.

Barbican’s initiative freeB is available to 16-25 year olds and gives members exclusive discounts and free tickets.

The National Theatre offer an Entry Pass, with benefits like £5 tickets and backstage tours, and discounts in the bookshop, bars and restaurants.

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Coming Soon: Candle Path

It’s sad but true: the nights will be getting darker soon, and if you’re walking around an unfamiliar area this can feel scary.

Soon the app Candle Path will launch - to help you find the safest routes around.  Unlike Google Maps, it has an embedded crime reporter tool and can send an emergency text to a person of your choice with details of your location if your phone is unresponsive.


Living London Day

Are you new to London and want to know where to start?  Thank God it’s #FreshersFriday!


Come to our Living London Day to find out what it’s like to study in London. Get practical advice and tools on the spot, such as signing up with a GP, getting a National Insurance number, CV writing and finding out what activities you can be involved in while at university. A day of talks, workshops and stalls including: KX Recruit, Made in Arts, London, Sports, Societies, Student Services, Commonplace, SEE, Nightline and more!

Thursday 11th September @ 11am - 4pm Meet at The Street @ CSM

Hello, I'm starting my course at CCW this September and my parents are worried about the area mainly that it is next to Brixton and Peckham. How safe is that area for students and does the violence ever spill over into Camberwell. How safe will I be

Students' Union - University of the Arts London
Students' Union - University of the Arts London answered:


Thanks for the question, we look forward to seeing you in September!

Regarding the safety of CCW please see below:

Both Brixton and Peckham have come a long way since their days of being dangerous and their bad reputation is definitely no longer deserved. They are up and coming and both have a large student populations, so there is no need to worry. People travel from all over London to party in Peckham and Brixton Village Market is a foodie paradise. Obviously we want everyone to be safe, and you should always be sensible but this is the same in all areas of London.

It’s always good to put safety first when out and about so we’ve put together a list of our top recommendations for staying safe in London no matter where you are.


Never get into an unlicensed cab or hail a minicab off the street. Instead stick to licensed black cabs which you can hail off the street and if you can’t see any around TfL’s Cabwise app is a handy way to call one.

Night time

It’s always safer to travel with friends at night and it’s never a good idea to let a drunk friend find their own way home. But if you stick together and stay in well-lit areas there shouldn’t be any cause for concern.


Always keep your phone charged and with you. That way if you get lost or run into difficulties you can always call someone to help. 


London has lots of traffic so it’s always best to cross roads at pedestrian crossings and to look both ways even if the green man is there. Similarly it’s not a good idea to have your headphones in with loud music as you will be less able to hear the cars.


Always let someone know where you are going, especially if you intend to be out all night. Also make sure that you know the way home and have enough money when going out rather than relying on friends.


London is a brilliant and beautiful city that’s no less safe than anywhere else. So if you follow these simple suggestions and use some common sense when out and about you will be able to enjoy everything that London has to offer without any worries :)


Moving In/Out

For lots of you this will be your first time living away from home, possibly your first time in London or even in the UK! So we’ve put together this helpful guide on what to pack and almost more importantly what NOT to pack to make your transition as smooth as possible.


Things to Pack/NOT to Pack

1. Course Supplies

If you already have a lot of the supplies you’ll need for your course, especially if they’re expensive e.g. a sewing machine then bring them along as you will be using them from Day 1.

BUT if you need a lot of heavy textbooks and you haven’t got them yet then wait until you have moved in and order them to your new London place. This will save you lugging these heavy books all the way from home.


2. Clothes

Bring enough clothes just to last you for the term. Remember you will be going home at Christmas and so you don’t need to bring all your summer clothes this term! Also London is a shopping capital so the chances are that you will add to your wardrobe whilst you’re here anyway.

3. Toiletries

Bring your toothbrush and toothpaste so that you don’t have to venture out on the first day to buy some. And if you have any specialist or expensive beauty products bring those. But things like shampoo etc you will be better off buying when you arrive rather than carrying them all the way here.

4. Papers

REMEMBER to bring all your important documentation such as Visas, ID and other important information. You will most likely need this almost immediately.


5. Sentimental Stuff

Photos are a compact and easy way to decorate your room and banish homesickness. If you have particular sentimental items that you can’t live without then bring them but be strict; you don’t need everything from your childhood room!

6. Electronics

Be careful when bringing lots of valuable items with you as you’ll very upset if you lose them! You might consider insuring the phones, laptops and cameras you do bring: Endsleigh does good rates on student insurance. Also with large electronics such as printers you might be better off using the services at university.


General Tips:

- you can buy almost everything in London so when packing consider if it would be easier to buy it in London or carry it all the way with you, especially if you are travelling by plane or train.

- you will forget something, pretty much guaranteed but that’s no need to panic! You can always buy a replacement or ask a friend/family member to post it on to you.

- if you’re going home for the holidays then only bring what you need for one term at a time.


Packing (and packing back up afters) is a skill that you will pick up over time. You might find that you brought waaaay too much or too little the first term but it’s only by living in London that you will get an accurate sense of what things you really need. So give it a go, and if it doesn’t go according to plan there’s always next term!



Foundation For LIFE!

Welcome all Foundation Students! During your Foundation you will discover more about yourself and your artistic direction than you thought possible and will be able to enter confidently into a Degree course afters.


Before you start your course you might have been given quite a long shopping list of equipment and materials. It’s important that you come to the first lesson with everything you might need so find out here where to get the best deals:

Sewing Equipment - Morplan

They have a huge selection of pattern cutting and sewing equipment as well as display and packaging stuff. The best place to buy a patternmaster!

Art Supplies - CASS Art

They do a special student discount and have locations all across London. This is the perfect place to buy your paints and papers.

Books -

Textbooks and inspirational books can be expensive, so don’t splash out on brand new ones unless you have/want to! You can find great deals on art and fashion books on Amazon Marketplace.

Niche Magazines - Good News

London’s premier fashion book and magazine store is sadly closed R.I.P Franks :( But still in Soho there are lots of good newsagents for niche fashion and design magazines such as Good News on Berwick Street. We also get a limited supply of magazines such as Elle, Wallpaper and Frieze that you can pick up for FREE from the Students’ Union HQ in High Holborn. Win!


Foundation can be one of the most exciting and inspirational years of study. Even though you may go into the course feeling like you have a pretty good idea of where you want to go, remember to keep an open mind and you’ll be surprised how much your plans can change!


Things (not) to try in London: featuring the Circle Line Pub Crawl

It’s #FreshersFriday time!  This week we’re providing anti-advice - things you could do, but not necessarily good things.

Time Out offer practical things-not-to-do here and here.  These tips will guarantee you a less stressful September.

Something that I’ve always found intriguing is that London Underground’s Circle Line isn’t actually the shape of a circle, but the shape of a bottle of beer.

It’s only fitting, in that case, that there’s a Circle Line Pub Crawl.  The pub crawl ignores the meandering stretch from Edgware Road to Hammersmith, so that you only have to tackle 27 pubs going in the circle.  Easy…

You will need:
- Up to £60 to cover half pints (over £100 if you’re braving pints)
- A strong stomach
- A travelcard (your Oyster will cap at £7.20 per day, though)

Alternatively, if you respect your liver and bank balance too much to hit them in one night, why not acquaint yourself with the top pub suggestions for that route over a longer period of time?


Getting Around in London

Getting around London can be confusing, but this handy guide will keep you on the right track!


1. Get an Oyster card

This can be used on buses, the tube and some other services. It will save you time and money, especially if you link it to your bank account to instantly top itself up when you’re running low on credit. Find out how here.

2. Plan your Journey

Use the TFL website to plan journeys around London. This will let you know the quickest route and how long it takes. And use National Rail’s website for journeys outside of London. Another handy website and app is Citymapper (the ‘get me home’ button can be particularly useful)


3. Sometimes Walking is Best

With heavy traffic in central London sometimes walking is your best bet. Use Google Maps to find your way around, and check out this helpful guide of stations that are quicker to walk between than to take the tube. It might surprise you!

4. Student Rates

You might be eligible for a student Oyster card. This could make you lots of savings if you use it everyday. But be careful as if you don’t use the tube/buses every day then you might be better off without one. Find out details and benefits here.

5. Know where you’re going!

This might sound silly but with many different sites UAL covers the whole of London, so make sure to check your timetable carefully as the location of your classes may not be the same every week. This is especially true near hand in, where your submission location might be somewhere you’ve never been before. So check carefully and look it up before you leave to save some stress at hand in!


Competition: Design a mural for Elliott’s Row Pocket Park

Elliott’s Row Pocket Park is a small but public outdoors space in Elephant & Castle, and they’re looking for a mural design celebrating Britain’s wild flowers.  The winner will get a £1,000 budget to cover the costs of designing and creating the mural.  Here it is on a map - if you fancy visiting and getting inspired!

Download your information pack and get applying over here.

The closing date is at midnight on Tuesday the 30th of September.


How to Manage your Money


Managing your finances when you’re a student can be tricky, especially if this is your first time living away from home. You might feel like you’ve just won the lottery when your first student loan comes in, but resist the urge to spend it all at once. To help you out we’ve put together our top five tips for making that loan stretch the whole year.

1. Make a budget


A good place to start is the Student Calculator. Simply fill in your loan details, as well as income and expenses, and this handy online tool will let you know how your finances are looking. This is an important exercise as it will show you if you have enough money to last the term and will highlight any areas in which you’re over-spending.

2. Get an NUS Extra card


It costs just £12 to get an NUS Extra card, which will get you discounts between 10-50% in 160 participating retailers including the Co-opASOSAmazon and McDonalds to name a few. 

3. Learn to cook


Learning how to cook quick and easy meals at home is a lot cheaper than eating out in London. Check out Sorted Food’s website and YouTube channel where you can follow along to easy and delicious recipes.

4. Get a Student Travelcard


If you often make the same journeys across London for university, work or any social activities, investing in a weekly Student Oyster Travel card can work out a lot cheaper than a regular pay-as-you-go Oyster. Check out the TFL website for more info on the benefits. Also if you get a Young Person’s Rail Card not only does this get you a 1/3 off all your rail tickets but you can also link it up to your Oyster card :)

5. Look for discounts


There are discounts available for almost everything if you know where to look! Student Beans has a regularly updated discount page where you can find vouchers for a variety of retailers. A good way to pay less for food is to visit your local market near closing time when lots of items will be discounted, or check out the reduced to clear section of the supermarket.

We hope that these tips will help you to budget successfully - in the meantime, if you need any help or advice visit for details on how to contact our trained Advice Service team. 


Creative Opportunity @solarboxlondon

Social enterprise Solarbox London Ltd are currently looking for a winning design to adorn the exterior of their very first kiosk which is launching outside Tottenham Court Road station in September.

Powered by the sun, sustained through advertising, solarbox turns Central London’s disused telephone kiosks into wireless, solar-powered, public charging points for smart phones.

Solarbox is a FREE service which offers the user a space where they can stand and charge their phone inside the kiosk.

They are looking for bright, bold and inspiring designs by 27th August.

The base layer of the solarbox will be luminous green (RAL number: 6038). Be as innovative as possible with ideas and materials but think along the lines of: 




If you think you can put your creative stamp on this new green initiative then please submit your design to


Skip Garden: KX’s best kept secret


With all this sunshine around, there’s nothing better than catching a lunch outside.

The Skip Garden, just behind Central Saint Martins, is a perfect gem bringing you tasty treats in a romantic make-shift garden among the Kings Cross redevelopment site.

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