Our Culture Editor Leanne McCarthy presents her cultural guide to Loughborough!
Whether you’re heading into your first year at Loughborough this autumn or you’ve already been through the excitement of freshers one or two times before, here are a few tips to add to your cultural experience of the bubble as we all head into the upcoming semester. Your first few weeks back can’t consist solely of punch parties and society sign ups!
When you’ve just moved to a new place, it’s a good idea to have a wander around with a few new friends and suss out where everything is. One of the many great things about Loughborough is that nothing is ever too far away – we’re talking a maximum twenty-minute walk to most places, so it’s good to know your way around. Even if you’re living on campus and it seems like miles away, Queen’s Park is a lovely place for a picturesque autumnal stroll. There’s the Carillion Tower, aviaries, and a bandstand which could all make for some impressive pictures to send to family and friends at home.
Loughborough has won awards for its markets, so you should go and see what all the fuss is about! Every Thursday and Saturday the main square is lined with numerous stalls selling goods from fresh fruit and veg to bargain DVDs and books. They are well worth a check out – especially if you’re living on campus and get tired of the purple onion. Also keep an eye out for pop up stalls in the union; they often have vintage clothes sales and market type stalls selling plants and posters in the first few weeks.
There’s a great café near the library called Bom Bom Patisserie. I only realised it was there last year after a friend told me about it, and I wish I had known about it sooner! The soups are delicious and sure to warm you up as the weather gets colder, and the cookies are even better – a definite pick me up if you’ve been studying all day. Bom Bom have also very recently opened a second location on the canal (opposite Lidl) for those living in town!
Another of my favourite food spots in Loughborough is Sonny’s Street Food. This Thai restaurant offers dishes which are really great value for money, fresh, and always amazing. You can sit in the restaurant, which has a lovely laid-back atmosphere, or get a takeaway if you’re having a quiet night in.
If you’re getting sick of vodka lemonades and fancy a more interesting and sophisticated drink out with your friends, The Kelso is a great shout. There are some lovely seating areas there, the drinks are really well made, and they also do several different events and club nights.
It seems a long time away right now, but it will come quicker than you can imagine… towards the end of October, keep an eye out for the Diwali lights being switched on in the town centre, and for Halloween celebrations!