Royal Holloway Students' Union

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Royal Holloway Students' Union
Royal Holloway Students' Union logo.jpg
Institution Royal Holloway, University of London
Location Egham, London, United Kingdom
Established 1994
President Emma Peagam
Affiliations NUS
Students' Union building

The Royal Holloway Students' Union (SURHUL) is a students' union for Royal Holloway, University of London.[1] It "has a reputation as one of the best unions in the London area", in the words of The Independent.[2] The Students' Union provides much of the on-campus entertainment, through to organising and sponsoring the sport clubs and special-interest societies, on top of providing advice and counselling to students through the Student Advice Centre.[3]


SURHUL is run entirely by the student body, headed by a team of elected student officers, including four full-time salaried Sabbatical Officers, having been elected for one year. The elected Officers' executive power is held in check by the legislative power of General Meetings.[3] The Sabbatical Officers also have 15 unpaid volunteers (elected Executive Officers) at their assistance.[4]

In 2013 two officers, Jamie Green and Ian Stewart were re-elected to their sabbatical officer posts for the first time in SURHUL's history.[5]

In 2014 Sidonie Bertrand-Shelton became the first woman to be re-elected as a sabbatical officer.

In order to supervise the administration and commercial activities of the Union, 20 permanent members of staff are employed.[4] More than £1 million a year accounts for the Union's turnover.[3] The Union uses the employment of 250 student staff, and also runs an accreditation scheme for the student staff and volunteers.[4]


Royal Holloway's Student Union usually provides entertainment seven days a week, with a function hall which holds 1,200 people, three bars, a coffee shop and administrative offices all located within the Union's main building.[3] The Students' Union also controls three other student-run bars; Medicine, The Stumble Inn[3] and Tommy's.[6]

Union events have attracted acts such as Trevor Nelson and Tim Westwood.[2] An annual Summer Ball is held at the Founder's Building at the year's end, with a survivor's breakfast the following 6am. There are also weekly market days, at which a variety of items are sold including fresh fruit, vegetables, books, and there are also CD sales.[3]


Over 100 student societies and clubs, run by a committee of students, are put on through the Union.[4] Societies include Academic Societies like the Politics and International Relations Society (which takes part in the NMUN) or the Classical Society and recreational societies like the Comedy Society (which hosts stand up evenings throughout term time), The Institute for Impure Science (IFIS aka the Sci-fi and Fantasy society), and Anime and Manga, which won society of the year for 2004/05.[7] The oldest society on campus is the Savoy Opera Society which performs two to three comic operettas a year.

The Union also maintains a number of sports club, catering to sports as diverse as rowing, ultimate and a competitive cheerleading squad, the RH Tom Cats.


The Royal Holloway Students' Union is responsible for broadcasting Insanity radio station, which was established in 1998.[8] Available locally on 1287MW and 103.2 fm, Insanity broadcasts between the hours of 8am and 1am, 7 days a week.[8] The station is also available worldwide through the internet.[9] Receiving a positive reaction, the station has twice won the Silver Award for Best Student Radio Station at BBC Radio 1's Student Radio Awards,[8] and has also won the Best Marketing and Promotions Award 3 times since 1999.[9]

Released up to 14 times per academic year, The Orbital is a student newspaper published fortnightly by the Students' Union, covering subjects from culture and arts to society and sport.[10] The original official Royal Holloway student publication was in the format of a newspaper called The Egham Sun, but this was replaced with the magazine edition in the early 1990s.[10] The publication has a readership of 3,000,[8] and a print media budget of around £10,000.[11] The Orbital was named runner-up at the 2000 Guardian Student Media Awards in the category of Student Magazine of the Year.[12] The magazine was named the Best Student Magazine at the 2006 National Student Journalism Awards,[11] as well as being nominated in two other categories: Best Student Critic and Best Student Photographer.[10] Judges from the media industry said of the magazine, it is "gritty, witty, relevant and coherent, packaged with good design and strong front covers."[11]

In the 2012-2013 academic year SURHUL launched its own television station called Rhubarb TV which is based online.


Royal Holloway has a RAG (Raise and Give) society raising money for charity. Events are held throughout the year for various charities. These include nights at the students' unions, student bars, around campus as well as rag raids across the country. An annual RAG week is held to raise money for a charity selected by students.


  1. ^
  2. ^ a b
  3. ^ a b c d e f Royal Holloway, University of London 2008 Undergraduate Prospectus, p. 16.
  4. ^ a b c d Royal Holloway, University of London 2008 Undergraduate Prospectus, p. 17.
  5. ^
  6. ^ Tommy's Bar. Retrieved on 2008-08-29.
  7. ^ Societies at Royal Holloway. Retrieved on 2008-08-29.
  8. ^ a b c d The University of London Union. Retrieved on 2008-09-01.
  9. ^ a b College News. Royal Holloway, University of London, 2004-11-17. Retrieved on 2008-09-01.
  10. ^ a b c What is The Orbital?. Retrieved on 2008-09-01.
  11. ^ a b c The Orbital wins Best Student Magazine 2006. Royal Holloway University of London, 2006-12-01. Retrieved on 2008-09-01.
  12. ^ Student media up for national awards. Royal Holloway, University of London, November 2001. Retrieved on 2008-09-01.

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