February 24, 2015, by Tilly Potter

A fancy dinner plus one

Other than grad ball at the end of the year, there aren’t many opportunities to get kitted out in formal attire at university. Unless, of course, your boyfriend is in bellringing society (what, you haven’t heard of it?)! So on Saturday night I donned the smartest dress I could find in my wardrobe and headed out to be surrounded by people with a slightly unusual hobby. Except that I was the unusual one for not knowing anything about bellringing.

We arrived at the St James Hotel which was near the castle in the centre of Nottingham. It looked pretty fancy on the outside and the room that the meal was being held in was pretty fancy too. As you can see, it was set up just as you’d expect a wedding reception to be.


Looking fancy

In fact, the whole evening had many similarities with a wedding reception – who knew bellringing was so serious? There was a seating plan which included a top table, from which there were amusing speeches after the dinner (thankfully, most of the jokes weren’t about ringing so I could understand them). There was a ridiculously expensive bar. And there was a ceilidh at the end which involved lots of high energy and mildly dangerous dances, including one where all the women flew in the air by being spun very fast on the spot. Mild injuries were sustained (note to self – bring a spare pair of shoes which aren’t heels next time!). I then managed to win a booby prize of a pink toy frog in the raffle – as you do.

Although I knew a few of my boyfriend’s ringing friends, there were also plenty of people I didn’t know, so I got to practice the useful life skill of being introduced to new people and trying to remember names – as well as not looking too lost and uncomfortable. I’m now definitely sorted for future awkward office parties.

Being at university should definitely involve trying new things and meeting people you wouldn’t otherwise meet, so if you ever get the chance to go along to a friend or partner’s event, I would certainly recommend it!


Posted in Tilly