Durham University

In my research and visits to different universities, I created fact files and notes about the different courses, universities and places themselves. Durham being a collegiate university means there is a lot more to consider, as choosing the right college can greatly determine your first year. So below, I created a college guide (from an outsider perspective) alongside student opinions from online (not sure of the accuracy!) to help me decide if this is the university for me.

A bit about Durham…

Durham is located in the Northeast of England, south of Newcastle upon Tyne but only a short 13-minute train journey away. The River Wear loops around the Romanesque Durham Cathedral and Norman Durham castle. It has a small population of 65,000 approx and the university enrolls 18,000 students approx; making the student population dominant in and around the city. It is built on hills but has several shops, cafes and restaurants which are all located within a small town centre area.


The Bailey:

Hatfield: number 3

  • Hatfield is right in the middle of the Bailey surrounded by other colleges. 
  • Not too far from the main campus & close to town centre. 
  • Has a reputation of ‘posh southerners’ but remains popular.
  • Nice outer buildings and close to river for scenic walks or morning runs! 
  • Shared bathrooms but nice rooms

St Chads: number 6

  • Posh college with frontage right onto the street. 
  • Cool bar, conservatory with a good atmosphere.
  • Its location favours the humanity student 
  • Parallel with cathedral means you’ll hear the cathedral bells all the time!


St John’s: number 10

  • Posh, holy & small. 
  • Right onto the street, old-style buildings. 
  • Intimate bar but alright people?


St Cuthbert’s Society: number 7

  • Rather non-descript building and exterior 
  • Cosy bar and sitting area 
  • Near a very pretty bridge and river Wear 
  • It offers self-catered flats at Parsons Field


University (Castle): number 13

  • Posh Southerners! And Infamous formals.
  • By the cathedral and main quad area – looks appealing but half get shoved in a red brick building outside the castle – mixed reviews.


Hill Colleges: 

St Mary’s: number 11

  • Well-kept with garden out front, clean buildings 
  • Close to campus and town without being in it
  • Bad Bar and possibly social activity 


Grey: number 2

  • Closest to campus
  • Sits in the middle of the hill close to the Bill Bryson Library and New Inn. 
  • Not as bleak as it sounds … good views

Collingwood: number 1

  • Second largest college
  • Right up the hill!
  • More undergrads than any other. 
  • Spacious bar and canteen area.


Van Mildert: number 14

  • Weird layout of buildings with a pond/ ‘lake’ at the back 
  • Large, sporty college with a big bar 
  • Near other hill colleges


Trevelyan: number 12

  • Ugly hexagonal buildings
  • Confusing layout and overall grey feeling.
  • Right next to Mildert, Aidans and Mary’s but awkwardly long distance from town


St Aidan’s: number 5

Long way up! Up the hill and 84 steps to a grey building! 

Good view from top and large corridors


Way up the hill:

Josephine Butler: number 4

  • Well-kept buildings and nice flats/dorms 
  • Only self-catered college
  • 20/30 min walk to town!!
  • Big bar and nice cafe 
  • Friendly people


Stephenson: number 8

  • near JB – being re-located.
  • But good rooms with en-suites, spacious kitchen. 
  • Self-catered

John Snow: number 16

  • Location for 2019/20 to be determined
  • Mixed reviews
  • Currently far from campus closer to shops. 
  • Weird buildings

Near the river:

St Hilde and St Bede: number 9

  • Close to town but disconnected from other colleges. 
  • In a pretty setting by the river however.
  • Big buildings but small accommodation. 
  • Good facilities

50 Facts about Me

So, I debated writing this post for a long time as I convinced myself that no one would ever care to read about random things to do with me. But I re-visited the idea and decided that you never know, someone might. So I ended up writing a list of 50 random facts about me. 

I figured if nothing else, it may help you to get to know me better, I personally love reading these sort of blog posts myself – so please feel free to leave a comment with a quirky fact about yourself. 🙂

Without further ado:

1.My full name is Rebecca Denise Colyer – My middle name is my Grandma’s

2. I have a younger brother – he’s annoying but I love him really

3. My birthday is in October, but have never done Halloween

4. I have always had a dog in my life – for the longest time I had two beautiful bearded collies

5. I am 5ft 7’ and not wishing to be any taller!

6. I am left handed and left footed – I basically do everything on my left side!

7. I am pretty shy person (until you get to know me!)

8. I enjoy spending time on my own, I can be happy in my own company – perhaps explains #7

9. I prefer a night in over a night out – company, movie and blankets 🙂

10. Autumn is my favourite season – partly because it’s my dads

11. Without my glasses I am fairly blind – runs in the family

12. Give me a good book and you won’t see me for hours, maybe days

13. I am a planner and a list maker – the unknown is scary 

14. One of my favourite quotes is from Elizabeth Gilbert who says: “Embrace the glorious mess that you are”

15. My favourite meal of the day is: brunch (does that count?!)

Brocco on Bank Brunch

16. I would describe myself as girly but with a tomboy streak (I’ll thank my auntie and mum for that)

17. I set high expectations for myself and push myself to always work harder (sometimes detrimental)

18. I love scrapbooking and creating small memoirs to remember sentimental things and good times

19. I used to religiously write a diary and still have mine from when I was 9 (no you can’t see it!) 

 20. I used to play fairly competitive hockey – but now just play for enjoyment

21. I wouldn’t describe myself as sporty – but can/do enjoy sport (hence #20)

 22. I have never been fully drunk: the idea of being out of control is daunting

 23. I LOVE music, it is my escape 

 24. I am scared of deep open water but love watching the sea – put it simply I am not a water person!

 25. And so of course…I am allergic to Neoprene – yep that stuff in wetsuits (weirdest allergy ever!) 

 26. I used to want to be a teacher, and still find the prospect of inspiring others exciting

27. I also love interior design and still have a scrapbook full of magazine pictures for when I own my own house (organised by room, pattern and colour obvs!)

28. I have one piercing (my ears) and no tattoos – but they do interest me

29. Anyone who gets: “We were on a break!” and “How you doin?” I like you. 

30. I have watched all three High School Musical films at least 5 times 

31. And also…both Mamma Mia films about 3 times

32. I am a Libra – but does that really mean anything?

33. I have never had a serious relationship – until now 😉

34. When I get tired, properly tired, I don’t want to talk to anyone.

35. I am also NOT a morning person, #34

36.I don’t like people who typ lyk dis.

37. If I see incorrect spelling or grammar – I have an urge to fix it!

38. I am terrified of speaking in front of people: but strangely enjoy it

39. I have 5 social media accounts: but wish I spent less time on them

40. I am not religious but want to believe in something…

41. I would love to travel to Italy, Greece and New Zealand (find me the time and money!)

42. I am planning on going to University to study English in the next two years

 43. I live in a very quiet and tidy household, but that’s the way we like it. 

 44. I am a very over-protective and supportive big sister (much to my 15-year-old brother’s embarrassment sometimes!)

 45. But I love being looked after and cared for myself

46. I hate rollercoasters and theme parks. UGH

47. I also don’t deal with crowds or lots of people very well either…I guess why #46

48. The words ‘fun-run’ should not exist together

49.  My hands and feet are always cold

50. Can’t decide between sunrise or sunset: but I’m awake for more sunsets!

Porthleven Sunset