Injured Cambridge students involved in ‘crush’ to board bus to accommodation on ski trip

Students were left in minus temperatures despite being guaranteed a seat

Injured University of Cambridge students on the 2023 Varsity Ski Trip were involved in a “crush” when boarding buses back to their accommodation despite being promised seats.

Following the Mega Après event on Thursday 7th December, the limited bus services were overwhelmed in capacity, leaving injured students unable to board in minus temperatures.

Two students with shoulder and knee injuries were told by a representative from NUCO, the travel company who organised the Varsity trip, that the bus was the only way to get back to their accommodation.

However, when the students asked for assistance, they were informed that it wasn’t possible for injured skiers to be given early boarding.

They claim they only received “futile” advice about where the door would likely be, leaving them to face “crowds of drunk Oxbridge students”, according to Varsity.

Student accommodation for the Varsity Ski Trip

NUCO allegedly also informed the students that once on the bus, everyone would be provided with a seat. However, once the 11.30pm coach arrived, one injured student described how they were unable to board due to a “massive crush of people”, who ignored their shouts of pain and continued “swearing” and “pushing”.

The promise of every student being provided with a seat turned out to be untrue, as the 12.30pm bus was at full capacity with seated and standing passengers.

This resulted in students being left in -3 degree temperatures, while NUCO representatives allegedly told them to “calm down” when they expressed discontent.

The evening social events were located in a separate part of the resort to student accommodation

After this, the NUCO representatives allegedly left the bus stop, leaving the remaining students to wait until 1am for the next bus back.

The student told Varsity that they “understand that it was a particularly busy time, but the lack of empathy for others hurt and made the whole affair feel extremely disorganised”.

The annual Varsity Ski Trip for Oxbridge students takes place every year at the end of Michaelmas term. Many of the evening social events require students to use a bus service to reach a different part of the ski resort from their accommodation.

Students faced minus temperatures

This was not an isolated incident, with similar experiences being described on other nights of the trip. One student told The Tab Cambridge about a comparable situation at the Varsity Fest Event on Sunday 3rd December.

They described how “about 200 people just swarmed onto the bus; it did feel like a proper crush”, remarking that “if something had happened on that bus, no one would have been able to get help”.

The student also commented on the organisation of the coaches, revealing that “there was no way to reliably check the times so there was a lot of waiting in the cold” with allegedly “no NUCO reps in sight”.

The Tab Cambridge has contacted Varsity Ski and NUCO  for comment.

Recommended articles by this author:

Storm Henk: An end to the flooding?

Drug dealer sentenced to four years behind bars after death of Cambridge University student

Cambridge’s Trinity College admits to giving financial grants to pupils of specific schools