What is the average age of Connaught Hall residents?

The median age in Hall is usually 19 years. In 2014-15, we had 47 residents aged 21 or over; 29 residents were postgraduate students (out of 230).

I understand most residents are first-year undergraduates. Is it noisy? Will I be able to study?

Our Hall handbook has this to say about noise:
Noise disturbance generally creates the most dissatisfaction with Hall life. The Halls are large halls of residence of mostly first-year undergraduate students in a busy part of London. Nowhere in the Hall can be completely silent. Most staff and residents find that occasionally they need to wear earplugs at night, even if the only noise they can hear is traffic noise. Some people are particularly sensitive to even low levels of noise and we would advise that a mainly undergraduate hall of residence in central London may not be suitable accommodation in this case. It is not always reasonable to restrict others’ activities to meet the expectations of someone who is especially sensitive to noise.
There is a lot of traffic noise. There is a fire station, police station, ambulance station, and hospital all within less than a mile radius of the Hall (this is also true for College Hall and International Hall; I think Lillian Penson Hall and Nutford House may be slightly quieter in this regard). On the positive side, this must make us one of the safest places in the world!
It’s probably true to say that almost everyone experiences some noise from their neighbours occasionally. 
Of course, we do have effective procedures for dealing with this if it is serious or recurrent (http://noise.connaught-hall.org.uk).

Is there a part of the Hall reserved for postgraduates?

We have 230 residents living on 6 floors. The ground and lower ground floors are quite small. From 1st to 4th, each floor has about 48 rooms arranged along a single, long corridor divided into three sections by fire doors. There are staircases at each end and in the middle of every floor. Each floor has a male and a female toilet/shower block (three toilet stalls and three shower cubicles in each). Most floors have three or four ensuite rooms.
We are a predominantly first-year undergraduate hall. We do try to accommodate most of our postgraduates on the second floor – so you would almost certainly be allocated a room there, unless you have an ensuite room (with only four ensuite rooms on the second floor, there are sometimes more postgrads who want ensuite than there are rooms available on the second floor). But this does not mean that the second floor is necessarily any quieter than anywhere else. We haven’t enough postgrads to fill a whole floor, so there are undergrads on the same corridor, and of course the rooms above and below are occupied by undergraduates.
Aside from putting postgrads together on the second floor, the accommodation office do not allow students to request specific rooms.

Are there separate study facilities?

We have two rooms for studying in: the Lang room, which is intended primarily for group study, and the Convocation Trust study room, which is for quiet, individual study. Both are on the lower ground floor; both are open 24 hours a day; and both can accommodate 6 to 8 students. It is very unusual for the study rooms to be full; on the contrary, they are often both empty, except around the spring/summer exam season!

What can I do if I’m being disturbed by noise? 

We have a whole web page with detailed instructions to help you deal with and report noise problems – whether it’s a banging radiator pipe or a neighbour playing music at 3am.

Visit noise.connaught-hall.org.uk for help.

I’m feeling unhappy / lost / lonely / homesick. How can I find help? 

It’s very normal to have some of these feelings some of the time, when you have moved to a new home to study something new. But if these kinds of feelings are severe, prolonged, or persistent, you should definitely ask for help.

It’s OK to say you’re not having the best time of your life!

There are lots of people around to support you as a student. Think about using some of these options:

  • Talk to the Warden or a Senior Member – for contact details and how to book an appointment, visit http://warden-contact.connaught-hall.org.uk.
  • Speak with your personal tutor at college.
  • See one of the student counsellors at your college welfare service.
  • Make an appointment to see your GP.
  • Check our list of more help providers at http://bit.ly/1mIBcpn. 

Is there Wi-Fi in Connaught Hall? 

We have Wi-Fi throughout the building.

If you attend a college that is signed up to Eduroam, you must use your Eduroam login to access the internet through our Wi-Fi. Your Eduroam login is normally the same as the login for your college (.ac.uk) email address. If you are unsure about your login details, contact the IT department at your college.

Only if your college or institute is not signed up to Eduroam, we will provide you with a login for the UoL Resident network. Contact Network Services at swan.support@london.ac.uk for help with this. 

How can I get help with the internet connection in my room? 

University of London network services can help if your wired or wireless internet connection isn’t working. 

Call 020 7862 8092 or email swan.support@london.ac.uk.
How can I get repairs done in my room / in the bathroom? 
If you spot something that needs to be repaired or replaced, write a request in the maintenance book at reception. We can normally respond with three working days.

If it’s an urgent problem (like a flood, electrical fault, or gas leak), report it to the security officer so we can deal with it immediately. 

How does the health service work in England? 

Most healthcare in England is free of charge on the National Health Service if you’re a student planning to stay for longer than six months.

To make best use of the health service, you must be registered with a general practitioner (GP). We very strongly urge you to register with a GP within your first few weeks in London.

If you need urgent healthcare advice or treatment, check out this guidance: http://goo.gl/4JIujo.

Some colleges operate their own health service: 

  • UCL: University Health Centre – telephone 020 7387 6306. 
  • LSE: Health Service – telephone 020 7955 7016. 

Other colleges are affiliated to 20 Gower Street Practice – telephone 020 7636 7628: 

  • ALL OTHERS (excluding UCL and LSE). 
  • KCL: Register at 20 Gower Street or at one of the three KCL Health Centres. Contact KCL for further details

I’m an international student. Do I have to register with the local police? 

Students from some countries do need to register with the Metropolitan Police. If you need to register, it will say so on your visa in your passport or biometric residence permit.
If your visa does not say that you have to register with the police, then you do not need to register.
For more information, visit http://content.met.police.uk/Site/overseasvisitorsrecordsoffice

Can I have a guest to stay overnight? 

You’re allowed to have someone stay with you in your room up to ten nights per calendar month. That could be a single stay of ten nights, or ten separate one-night stays, or anything in-between.
All you have to do is tell the security officer when your guest arrives how long you want them to stay for. You will complete a one-line sign-in sheet, and the security officer will issue a temporary pass for your guest.
If you want a guest for more than ten nights in one month, or if you want to have two or more overnight guests at the same time, you must seek the Warden’s permission in writing. Email the Warden at least seven days in advance at warden@connaught-hall.org.uk.
For more information about guests: http://www.connaught-hall.org.uk/pages/welfare/guests.html 

Landlord references and references from the Warden / Can you give me a letter for the bank to prove my address? I'm renting privately in my second or third year and my new landlord or agent wants a reference. Whom do I contact?

Landlords want to know that you paid your accommodation fees on time and that you did not damage your accommodation. The Hall management office have a template for landlord references that means they can easily put this information into an email or letter for you. So just email info.connaught@london.ac.uk and they will help you with the reference you need for privately rented accommodation.

I need a character reference for employment or volunteering work. Can the Hall help?

Some types of character, personal, or employment references may need to come from me (as Warden), which I am happy to provide so long as you have been involved in a role within the Hall that has allowed me to form enough of an opinion about you to be able to write a few reliable paragraphs about your personality and character. Otherwise, your college personal tutor may be able to help you.

Hot water / cold showers 

Sometimes you might have to run the hot water tap / shower for 5-10 minutes before it gets hot, especially at off-peak times (i.e. in the middle of the day, when most people are out, and the middle of the night, when most people are asleep) in parts of the building that are farthest from the boiler.

If the water has been sitting in the pipes for a long time, it will be cold; and in a big building, it can take a long time of running the tap before you start getting water fresh from the boiler.

If, for some reason, the water isn't hot after 10 minutes of running the hot tap fast, please tell reception immediately. It's nearly always a very simple problem that we can fix really quickly - but only if someone reports it! 

Can the bar be open more? 

We are commonly asked if the bar can be open more / longer hours.

The opening times for the actual bar (i.e. serving drinks) are set by the Bar Manager with a view to keeping the bar financially viable. This usually means the bar is open and serving drinks for 3-3.5 hours every night during term 1, and less in terms 2 and 3. The Bar Manager is always happy to consider your ideas for how the bar could be open longer hours without losing money, so get in touch at bar@connaught-hall.org.uk. Of course, there are also some legal / licensing restrictions on the hours the bar can serve alcoholic drinks.

The bar area (i.e. the room where the bar and pool table are) is not a common room. By and large, the bar area is only open when there is a member of staff serving drinks behind the bar. 

We have tried in previous years to keep the bar area open for longer as an extra common room, but problems have always arisen and forced us to return to locking the bar area except when it is supervised:

  • damage to the pool table;
  • break-ins and theft from behind the bar;
  • vandalism of chairs and sofas in the bar area;
  • noise complaints from rooms facing the garden because of people playing the piano or music in the bar after 23:00;
  • use of the doors from the bar to access the garden when it is closed after 23:00, also leading to noise complaints.

Because of these problems - all of which occurred more than once over a few years - we unfortunately cannot agree to open the bar area for longer.

Can I change to a different room?

If you want to move to a different room, you must contact Housing Services (based on the fourth floor of Student Central on Malet Street). Email info.halls@london.ac.uk and CC your email to info.connaught@london.ac.uk. 

Can I change to a different Hall?

If you are not happy with the Hall you have been allocated, you must contact both the intercollegiate halls accommodation reservations team (email info.halls@london.ac.uk) and the accommodation / residences office at your college (e.g. King's, UCL, QMUL, LSE, SOAS, etc).

The staff based at Connaught Hall cannot approve any room change requests or Hall swaps. All requests must go through Housing Services.
No requests for room swaps will be considered until after mid-October. This is because it would be unfair to allow residents who arrive early in the year the opportunity to move rooms while the Hall is relatively empty, whilst denying the chance to residents who move in later, when most rooms are occupied. Normally, whether you wish to move within the same hall or to a different hall, you would need to identify another person who is prepared to swap with you.

If the reason you are unhappy with your current room is a maintenance or cleaning issue, talk to the Hall Manager about it: we can often solve the problem so you don't need to swap. If the problem is an issue with your neighbours, talk to the Warden.