Chelmsford – City of Duds?

Chelmsford – City of Duds?

With Valentine’s Day approaching, lots of people are wondering just how romantic their partners will be.

According to a survey of 1,500 UK women, men from Chelmsford have been voted the least romantic by their wives and partners.

Continue reading “Chelmsford – City of Duds?”


Uni taxi usage helps boost local economy

Uni taxi usage helps boost local economy

One way  the University of Essex boosts the local economy big-time is  through the use of taxis and minicabs by staff and students.

They are hailing and booking to get their way to and from work — and late at night after going out.

According to Dave Cox, 53, from Five Sevens Taxis, the university is a main source of work on weekdays — though it doesn’t  make a big difference to business on weekends.

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With Ed Sheeran’s new album becoming the fastest selling album, ‘Divide’, by a male artist, and breaking chart records with 9 songs in the UK Top 10, we decided to look at the voice of the people – what are their opinions of the album. We wanted to find out honest reviews of ‘Divide’, and Ed Sheeran’s success through the eyes of the people who are where he began, busking.

We interviewed two buskers in Colchester Town about their views:

Continue reading “Divid-Ed”

48 hour junior doctor protest begins at Colchester General


By Molly Garlick and Joeann Murphy

Today we saw the start of a 48 hour junior doctor protest across the country, including Colchester General Hospital.  Around 30 protesters stood outside the hospital on the picket line in support of the strike organised by the British Medical Association.

This is the first strike of it’s kind as the junior doctors have not only removed themselves from general care, but also from the emergency wards. This hasn’t been done in the whole of National Health Services’ 68-year history.

Everyone on the picket line was clear about their message.  Rob Derrick, 32, who has been a junior doctor for five years said: “I would like to ask him, (Mr Jeremy Hunt) if he came in and needed an operation, would he want it done by me – when I’m absolutely knackered and have been working 70 hours a week and at 3 o’clock on a Saturday morning, or would he rather have me a little bit more fresh and able to actually give him the right drugs in the right order.”

This is the third of the three 48 hour organised strikes.

Stephanie Riding, 24, a foundation year one junior doctor, joined the picket line at 9am this morning. She believes that NHS staff are being spread thinly already and the length of shifts are unbelievably tiring. “Sometimes on a 9am until 9pm shift you won’t get a break until 5 in the evening and even then you only get half an hour.” she says.

“Very often, I have seen colleagues, and I have done it myself, where you’ll have written in the wrong notes or discharged somebody under the wrong patient’s name, thankfully I have been able to rectify these mistakes but it’s worrying how tired you actually get,”

“We are just human; yes we know we made the sacrifice and yes we did sign up for this but we did not sign up to have our contracts changed like this, you can’t just implement these changes like a dictator and expect us to be okay with it.”

The protester held up many signs with comments like, ‘Lets be blunt, do u trust Hunt?’ and ‘NHS not Hunts to sell’ are just a few of many.

Charlie Mukherjee, 31, Medical and Geriatric Registrar has been in the profession for 7 years and has been particularly affected by the Government’s changes throughout the years. He says: “Recruitment is bad and it’s getting worse, year on year there are more gaps in rotas and less staff to fill them,”

“I have had friends in this profession who have upped and left to Australia, who have gone to the city to pursue other avenues of in command, other friends who, on the way back from a night shift, not made it home.” Mr Mukherjee continues.

There was much public support shown at the picket line throughout the day, with many drivers pressing their horns as they pass. Many of which stopped with gifts of food for the protesters.

Student Refugee Campaign


The University of Essex are tackling the refugee crisis head on.
With the conflicts in Iraq and Syria continuing, the refugee crisis is finding itself an issue internationally.
Students from the university in Colchester are currently campaigning to raise money to sponsor refugee students to study at the university.
“We are in the middle of the biggest humanitarian crisis of the 21st century and our government is failing to tackle it properly.
Nevertheless, here at Essex we do not accept the indifference, the ignorance and the injustice endured by those oppressed. We challenge, we fight and are here to change lives.” a quote from the campaign’s website.
They’re mission is for £1 or more donation from every student.
Currently they have raised £3,500 for the Essex Refugee fund.

Essex political protests

imageFor the University of Essex, it has been an important part of their culture, to stay up to date with both social and political events.
A clear example of this was in the late 60’s, where there was a lot of student unrest and protest and Essex had the biggest voice of all. The university at this point was becoming infamous for the amount of student rebellions that were happening on campus.
In 1968, the controversial Conservative MP, Enoch Powell was to visit the university, seven students were due to have disciplinary meetings but the student protest sit-ins allowed these meetings to be annulled.
Just a couple of months later, another scheduled visit by Dr Thomas Inch, who was from the Porton Down biological welfare research facility, was interrupted by around one hundred protesters, including David Triesman, now known as Lord Triesman, speaking over Inch as he tried to give a talk. The university called the police, however nobody got arrested as the amount of students outnumbered the police.
In 1984 and 1989 there were two cases of protests against changes in student grants. In 1984 the Conservative Education Secretary Keith Joseph abandons plans for parents to be made to contribute to tuition fees.
Then in 1989 the Conservatives freeze student grants and introduced student loans. It was brought forward that grants up to £2,265 will stay available for students who were poorer, but loans of up to £420 became on offer to all students.
Three students were then ordered off of the campus and suspended, just three days later, students picketed all entrances to the university whilst distributing leaflets. After a few more days there was a meeting where almost all of the student population agreed to boycott all university participation, putting a free university in its place; however this did not continue long, as after a week the three students were reinstated.
The university has seemed to de-radicalise over the years compared to how it has been however there has been a few sparks of protests now and then.
A third year politics student, Sam French, 23, who has been actively involved over the 5 years he has been at the university, said ‘The NUS have taken a back step recently,’ and continued ‘Protesting isn’t dead at Essex at all.’
In February 2013, there was planning for the Israeli Deputy Ambassador to visit the University, to give a talk to some students; however this was cancelled after some students found out and managed to blockade the entrances to the building, and some even made their way inside. Again there was speak about some students having disciplinary action against them, yet nothing arose.
In April last year, a protest happened on one of the squares, called a ‘die-in’, where about 40 students laid on the floor pretending to be dead. This protest was about giving solidarity to the migrants, organised by French himself he stated, ‘Europe has a horrendous stance on the migrant crisis’.
The Students Union used to frequently send people to marches but French explained, ‘The SU has stopped funding this.’