Freshers’ week is no longer a booze-fuelled frenzy of fun – Blaise Tapp

A throwback to the carnage during freshers' week in Portsmouth in 2011
A throwback to the carnage during freshers' week in Portsmouth in 2011

Wwhich period of your life do you look back on most fondly? I’ll bet you a curry Pot Noodle most people will say their student years. 

Days of watching reruns of Countdown drinking white cider hold special memories. There was more than the odd visit to the pub, especially when the grant or loan cheque came in.

Students have long been dismissed as scruffy, booze-obsessed layabouts. Harsh, but most students really do like their alcohol. Or at least they did.

Last week was freshers’ week at universities, a week that used to mean debauched behaviour, powered by cheap booze. But it seems consuming copious amounts of alcohol is no longer mandatory.

One of the most staggering statistics I have read in the past week is the one that suggested one in five students don’t touch alcohol at all.

University of Hull ditched freshers week completely. And I watched a news segment about dry university events including dull sounding cafe crawls and I was struck by how sensible everybody appeared to be. Nobody was throwing up their guts in the potpourri or pinching traffic cones.

My initial reaction was to spit out my nightcap and mutter to myself about how boring it all looked but maybe this clean living generation has the right idea?

Was spending your food money on super strength ale and losing days to hangovers the most sensible use of our youthful energy?

Probably not. When my generation went into higher education we weren’t saddled with tuition fees, something that costs today’s undergraduates £9,250 a year –  no wonder many opt for a clear head when they attend lectures.

I suppose we should really applaud tomorrow’s leaders for taking their education seriously, while at the same time looking after their bodies better than their predecessors did.

It could be that this nation of ours could be in for a bright future with the next generation of workers being able to think more clearly than the last.

However, the future looks even bleaker than it currently is for the country’s landlords and pub owners.