John Burnet Hall

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John Burnet Hall
Former names Atholl Hotel
Alternative names Atholl
General information
Type Student residence
Address John Burnet Hall
Links Crescent
St Andrews
KY16 9JF
Town or city St Andrews, Fife
Country Scotland
Coordinates 56°20′32″N 2°48′24″W / 56.342136°N 2.806572°W / 56.342136; -2.806572Coordinates: 56°20′32″N 2°48′24″W / 56.342136°N 2.806572°W / 56.342136; -2.806572
Renovated 1962
Cost £40 000 + £25 000[1]
Owner University of St Andrews
University managed website

John Burnet Hall (also known as Atholl) is the smallest capacity Hall of Residence owned by the University of St Andrews. It was formerly the Atholl Hotel and is located in the town of St Andrews, Fife, Scotland. It has 76 bedrooms, of which 34 are shared in the main building and 36 single, en-suite rooms in the annex.[2] All the rooms are catered, with meals being provided 3 times a day during the week and breakfast and lunch at weekends.[2] Prices for 2013–14 are £5,780 - £6,975 per year.[2]


The hall is named after the Scottish classicist, John Burnet.[1] It was formerly called the Atholl Hotel before it was purchased by the University of St Andrews.[3][4]


John Burnet Hall is located on the main road coming into St Andrews, it overlooks the 18th hole of the St Andrews Links Old Course and the North Sea and West Sands can be seen beyond that.


Communal areas include a computer room and library, TV room, laundry room, common room, known as the West Lounge, with a foosball table and ping pong table.[2] The hall also has a Nintendo Wii, often used with a projector, and an Xbox 360 complete with an array of games. WiFi is available throughout the hall through the university's eduroam service.[5]


Due to John Burnet Hall's small size, each year its residents will often form a close-knit community, continuing the traditions relayed by past and returning residents. Its traditions in terms of events most notably include three annual balls: one held in the north-east Fife Fernie Castle at the beginning of the first semester, the Hall Ball towards the beginning of the second semester and finally the Traditions Ball held near the end of the second semester. In terms of in-hall student traditions the hall has its own purity test, a 'Yipping' fertility chant and a John Burnet anthem, to name a few.[6] On the anthem, it is believed to have originated in the early 1990s, with its chorus being 'John Burnet // La la la' and its verses containing dimetric couplets detailing the Hall's best features, for example, 'Good at sports // Avoiding courts'. The latter line of the couplet taking on a degree of irony today given the incident involving a past resident described in the section below.

Media coverage[edit]

In August 2011, a John Burnet resident was found guilty of a racist breach of the peace.[7] The student had returned to the hall after a drunken night, and upon seeing an Israeli Flag on another student's wall he said Israel was a terrorist state and the flag was a terrorist symbol. He then removed some of his pubic hair and rubbed it over the flag.[8] The student was expelled from St Andrews with immediate effect.


  1. ^ a b "Memorial to Professor". The Glasgow Herald. 16 June 1962. Retrieved 19 May 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c d "St Andrews University – John Burnet Hall". Retrieved 19 May 2013. 
  3. ^ "Atholl Hotel and use of the name Atholl". Retrieved 19 May 2013. 
  4. ^ "Atholl Hotel 1950". Retrieved 19 May 2013. 
  5. ^ "Residence Network". Retrieved 19 May 2013. 
  6. ^ JBH Traditions |url= missing title (help). 
  7. ^ "BBC News – St Andrews student guilty of Israel flag racism". BBC News website. 23 August 2011. Retrieved 19 May 2013. 
  8. ^ Turnbull, Henry (13 October 2011). "Saint – Expelled student speaks out on "ridiculous" punishment". The Saint. Retrieved 19 May 2013. 

External links[edit]