Punk Society flyer 1980

September 20, 2015, by Sarah Colborne

Tri Campus Collecting: Freshers, punks, and trainspotters in the University Archives

A warm welcome to the #UoN Freshers who will be attending the Welcome Festival at University Park, Nottingham. Here you will be able to find out about all the clubs and societies that will distract you from any residual homesickness over the coming months, and help you to meet the friends you will hopefully cherish for years to come (so long as you don’t end up sharing a house with them in your third year).

While you concentrate on signing up to everything going, archivists from Manuscripts and Special Collections will be gathering up flyers, posters and and other ephemera to add to the University Archives as part of the Tri-Campus Collecting project. Although originally intended to last for a very short period of time, documents such as these take on a new life when preserved for future generations as part of an archive collection. They can help to create a vivid impression of what life was like for the students who collected or created them. These are a selection from a box full of 1980s student ephemera that we have in the collections at Kings Meadow Campus, which were collected by one of my predecessors all those years ago.

French Society flyer 1980

Some of these societies clearly relied on the drawing talents of their members; Frog [French] Society flyer, 1980; from EMSC Not. 5 Ephemera

Punk Society flyer 1980

Others went for an appropriately cut and paste approach; Punk Society flyer, 1980; from EMSC Not. 5 Ephemera












They are wonderfully reminiscent of their time, and evocative of another era.


I particularly like the dilemma posed by the nascent Punk Soc over whether they should be:

  1. A Society to support, enhance, discuss and generally support a pseudo-anarchistic line to present standards of acceptability to music, fashion and politics.
  2. A non-political serious society to analyse present Behaviour of The Teenage masses.
  3. A Fun Society to play, listen, record and enjoy Music
Nottingham University Transport Society flyer, 1980

No doubt this is an extremely accurate drawing; NUTS flyer, 1980; from EMSC Not. 5 Ephemera

Gay Soc poster, 1980

Some take a rather more confrontational approach; Gay Soc poster, 1980; from EMSC Not. 5 Ephemera

So if you see us at the Welcome Festival, come and get a free bookmark, and pick up a flyer that we’ve made, all about the Time Capsule blog, and find out about how you can achieve immortality by submitting photographs for the University Archive.









We want STUDENTS FROM ALL THE UNIVERSITY OF NOTTINGHAM CAMPUSES (United Kingdom, China and Malaysia) to contribute to the ‘time capsule’ by sending in photographs you’ve taken that represent:

  • Accommodation (hall, private rented, parents home, journey to lectures, etc.)
  • Studies (lectures, revising, exams, studying on or off campus, technologies used, etc.)
  • Interests (societies, sports, charity work, socialising, culture, food, etc.)
  • Relationship to your campus (department, where you meet friends/go to be alone)
  • What you like best about being a student (or what your worries are)

Send each photo with a brief caption (who/what/when/where), and a paragraph explaining why the photo was chosen. Don’t forget to tell us your year of study, campus, and degree/department. Contributions will be collected for inclusion in the University Archives, and our favourite entries will be published on the Time Capsule blog (anonymously if you prefer!):


Submit your entries via:

Manuscripts and Special Collections

Visit our new exhibition featuring archive material from our collections: ‘Going Global: A History of the University of Nottingham’, at Nottingham Lakeside Arts, on University Park from 18th September 2015:http://nottingham.ac.uk/manuscriptsandspecialcollections/exhibitions/westongalleryexhibition.aspx

Time Capsule Blogs by Sarah Colborne, Archivist (Collections), Manuscripts and Special Collections

Posted in Time CapsuleUniversity archives