Hi! I’m Will, a now third year (!) Media Production student, who spent the first year of my university experience at Corfe House in Poole.
Like others around me, Corfe wasn’t my first choice of accommodation, but after I was given the ultimatum of living the halls life at Corfe or going out and finding private housing, in a town where I knew nobody, I chose Corfe!
Now, Corfe is one of the most unspoken halls of residence, mainly because it is 6 miles west of the university campus, in the town of Poole. However, location aside, Corfe is one of the better halls out of the lot. The building is quite modern, and despite having a hotel like layout to it, it quickly feels homely. The rooms were brilliant, and equipped with double beds, ensuite bathrooms, unlimited hot water (take advantage while you can) and a decent view out into Poole (dependent on direction).
Corfe is split into 8 floors, of which I was on the third. Each floor has 8 flats (apart from floors 7 and 8 which were studio flats, I think!) and each flat has 5 rooms, a kitchen and sleeping area (lounge). The kitchen facilities were all pretty standard (basic and functioning) although for a 5 person flat we were sharing one sink, which in the first year is a nightmare, but if you’re in a six person flat you get two! Anyway, more importantly, it takes 25 minutes to get to university campus … Yes, this seems bad now, but it quickly becomes routine!
I can’t remember if it is mandatory to get the university bus pass, but do invest in it, you don’t want to be looking up how to get to university using More Buses or even worse, facing the 2 hour walk! Also, it is a 35-minute bus into Bournemouth town centre where all the clubs are and the beach. You can take the M1 or M2 buses from Poole Bus Station to get to town and if you flash the driver your student card the journey is only £3 for a return!
I think the main worry for anyone going to Corfe is the location of the halls. It was my main worry, and it is easy to get down thinking that you are stuck in little old Poole, 35 minutes and 6 miles away from the “student experience”. The honest truth is, it’s not ideal, and it can be tough, but it really is what you make of it! My advice to anyone with this worry is to get involved with anything going! It’s really cliché, but it is also so very true. Unite (the Corfe House owners) are really good with hosting a variety of events such as pizza parties and movie nights and the common room is a good place to meet new people or get free pizza, because really, you won’t be the only one who feels this way. Also, it may seem difficult to get involved with clubs and societies when you live quite far away, but if you work around it, for example staying on campus an extra hour, so it’s easier to get to the sports pitches for practice, it will make the location inconvenience a lot better.
My favourite part of living in Corfe was surprisingly Poole. Although it has the quintessential shopping centre, supermarkets and restaurants that most towns’ folk will be accustomed to, it can be the perfect escape from university life. Time after time throughout my time at Corfe I went for a wander down the quay and watched the fisherman bringing in the day’s catch, or went for a run around the boating lake when the stress of an essay deadline was hanging over my head. I feel that Poole was perfect for the way that you weren’t surrounded by the student life 24/7, but you could escape it and relax whenever you wanted to.
My final advice to any first year’s coming this year – there is far more to socialising than playing ring of fire with Sainsbury’s basics Vodka!