The official A-Z of anything and everything that makes up a Notts freshers’ life

You’ll be a local in no time.

It’s officially Freshers’ Week which means a shiny new batch of Nottingham students who couldn’t tell the difference between Rock City and Ocean if they tried. If you are one of said students, don’t worry you will soon learn.

Some of us have been around for a while and we know enough about Robin Hood’s home to provide you with all the information you need to know in your first few weeks here. From nights out to local celebs to shopping – there’s nothing we don’t have here in Nottingham.

As I’m sure you’re also quickly learning, we’ve put everything you need to know in a handy alphabetised list for your reading pleasure:

A: Andy Hoe

You can’t talk about Nottingham and not talk about Andy Hoe. We should have a statue of him right next to Robin Hood. For those of you who don’t know who Andy is, he owns Ocean nightclub. He comes back every couple of weeks to party with the students and has been known to declare free drinks for all. If you catch him in Ocean make sure you get a selfie – the man is an enigma.

B: Baywatch and balloon drops

I’m a “Uni of” girlie so Rock City will always have my heart. I’ve never felt an adrenaline rush like the countdown the balloon drop at midnight. For those of you who favour Ocean, the moment when they play the Baywatch theme and all the boys take their tops off…I wouldn’t believe it if I hadn’t seen it and honestly I wish I’d never seen it.

C: Crisis nights

Wednesday night in Rock City means one thing – Crisis. Nothing like dragging yourself into lectures on Thursdays while absolutely hanging from the night before. This is the place for fancy dress and societies – if there’s not a boy in a skirt then it’s not Crisis.

D: Derby Road

It’s the stuff of nightmares for UoN and NTU students alike. It shouldn’t be called Derby Road, it should be called Derby Hill because it’s pretty much a 45 degree incline or at least it feels that way after a night out. The only good thing about it is the Rose and Crown at the end but I’d recommend taking the 34 bus to get there.

E: Empty VK bottles

If you’re out out then there’s an empty VK bottle coming at your head. Any club, VK to the head. You learn to accept it

F: Friendly (ish) rivalry

A local derby that could put Man City v Man Utd to shame. If you’re Nottingham then you have the advantage of having two unis on your doorstep. The best thing about this is the friendly rivalry and the impeccable varsity sports. Bring your best fighting talk because we all take competition very seriously here.

G: Goose Fair

I am scared of campus geese. I don’t what it is, but they just look like they would take you out if they wanted to. I cross the road when a see a goose and I will continue to do so. Luckily the Goose Fair has nothing to do with the Geese and is actually just a super fun Christmas market. Who’s to know.

H: Halls and Houses

Given the number of students in Nottingham, there’s no shortage of halls and student housing. First year brings with it big girl decisions like where to live and who to live with in second year even though you’ve known each other about five mins. Never fear tho – a lot of people are still friends with the people they lived with by the time it came around to it.

I: Ink

So Ink wasn’t a thing when we were all Nottingham freshersbut apparently it’s great.  It took a two year hiatus but it’s back with a bang so make sure to try it out and decide for yourself whether it’s any good .

J: Jonathon van Tam

The man is a living legend of Covid delivering some fantastic one liners at the daily briefings. Now he blesses UoN with his presence and knowledge and we’re very lucky to have him.

K: Kebab shops

Alongside a night out comes a kebab shop and there are no shortages in Nottingham. Nothing sobers you like a dirty kebab. Other options are available – partially to the Angel Row McDonald’s made better by all the security outside.

L: Lenton rats

No, I’m not talking about the students after a night out. Actual genuine rats. They’re not cute at all, they’re absolutely terrifying.

M: The Midlands

Are you in the north? No. Are you in the south? No. Where you are is right in the middle. You’re arguably in the best place in the whole of the UK and I swear I’m not even biased. Those of you from Surrey will be giving it “rahhhhh I wish we had Lie-del in the South” and those of you from literally anywhere else will laugh in their faces.

N: Nights out

Nottingham is famous for their nights out and boy do we live up to that reputation. There’s more clubs than you can shake a stick at: Rock City, Ocean, Unit 13 – the list goes on. Do you have to queue for forever to get in? Maybe. But that doesn’t stop us from coming back time and time again

O: Overheard UoN

Every wondered what people are talking about when walking around campus? Look no further than overhearduon on instagram. Some of the things people say are unhinged. Sadly we don’t have a Trent version yet but hey, maybe you freshers are the ones to start it.

P: The People

Best thing about Nottingham? The people that live here and yes, I’m talking about you. Nottingham has proved time and time again that in times of need we can all come together. Whether Trent or Uni of, a student community is just that – a community.


Ahhh the Queen’s Medical Centre. Those of you that are super smart and study something to do with medicine, you may have lectures in here. As for the rest of us, it’s a place of legends. One friend had to have their stomach pumped there, another broke their arm and who knows what else goes on – make sure to stay safe.

R: The Rose and Crown

An institution of Nottingham life. This pub has been around longer than some of you and has been serving the student community and locals for years gone by. They have quiz night, they play all the important matches and most importantly, they have cocktail pitchers. Plus it’s dog friendly which is an immediate win.

S: The Savoy

The Savoy is a cinema like no other. It’s one of the only pre war cinemas still standing and while it may not be the fanciest place you’ve ever seen, it’s so homely and perfect on a student budget. We love the Savoy and hopefully the Savoy loves us.

T: Trams

You can get around Nottingham in a whole bunch of ways but the tram is by far the most fun. It takes you everywhere and you can pay on your phone. Make sure you actually buy a ticket tho because tram inspectors will around and they will give you a hefty fine if you’re caught without one.

U: UniSalad

One of the weirdest apps I think I have on my phone but it works. The sole aim of this app is to sell club tickets you don’t want anymore. Beware of the up selling though – there is not a single club night I would pay more than a tenner for and neither should you.

V: The Victoria Centre

Student loan just come in? That can mean a trip to the Victoria Centre to spend it all in one go. Victoria Centre is the go to shopping spot in Nottingham and even has a food court filled with the favourite spots.

Who needs to pay their rent or for food when you can spend all of it on things you don’t really need?

W: Wollaton Park

This park is everything. It’s beautiful and filled with deer – not to mention Wayne Manor at the top of the hill. You’ll enjoy it all year long, it’s stunning at Christmas in the snow and even better for a picnic in summer. A little bit of a trek for those of you close to town but so worth it

X: eXtremely good food

Okay so maybe this is a stretch with the ol’ alphabet but there was nowhere else to talk about the restaurants a food places. Nottingham is home to so many great restaurants, you’ll never get bored with something new to try all the time.

Y: Your new home

Ultimately, the main thing about Nottingham is that it’ll be you new home for the next three years, if not more. Get to know the city because it is great – it even has a castle.  You now have something in common with Robin Hood so look at you go.

Z: Zoom zoom electric scooters

Okay so they aren’t called zoom zoom scooters but I say zoom every time I see one. I’ve nearly been knocked off my feet by one of these more times than I can count but I hope that those people got to their lectures on time.

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