Written on: 28/03/2008 by sandface (1 review written)
Only four people to each bathroom
Brilliant value for money
Just a bit old really...
I'm currently living in Maple Court in Oak House and it's completely fantastic! I know so many people in other halls who wish they lived here. Yeah, people joke about the sixties' monstrosities that are the buildings (not as bad as the OP tower though!) and being the cheapest halls in the uni they're fairly basic, but I wouldn't want to be anywhere else.
The best bit about living here is the social side. You live in a flat of eight (usually mixed) in a block of four flats, so it's very easy to make friends with the people you're near. Especially when the weather's good the grassy areas and trees all around are wicked and there are constantly flat parties going on! Being on the Fallowfield campus is great cos there are about 3000 students living so close together there's always stuff going on, but there's loads of space as well.
I definitely recommend going self-catered in your first year as not only do you get eased into the cooking/generally looking after yourself bit, living with flatmates also has much more of a 'family' feel. Most people in oak house end up living with their flatmates of blockmates in years two and three, as I am. You feel like you have your own house from the start, which is cool.
The flats are split level, with four bedrooms and a bathroom on each level, and a big kitchen/living room on either the lower or upper floor. Girls always get the upstairs rooms. Four people to a bathroom is actually really good for uni accommodation, and the showers are amazingly hot and powerful! I initially wanted en suite but as soon as I got here I realised it's really not something you need. You're unlikely to have it next year, so why pay loads more for it in first year? Likewise, not having a sink in my room really isn't an issue.
If you end up in Chestnut Court you do get a sink and a bigger bedroom to go with it, but the flip side is that the kitchen/living rooms are quite a bit smaller. I love Maple as the living areas are massive. A big double bedroom will be brilliant next year but for now I've got quite attached to my little oak house one! They seem to keep amazingly warm too.
On a practical note, across Oak House you get a massive freezer, a fridge, microwave, kettle and toaster in the kitchen. We have two hobs and one grill/oven but this seem to vary a bit - you'll always have two hobs though. And if anything breaks they are wicked at getting you new stuff right away. In the bedrooms you have the bed, a little wardrobe, desk with three drawers, couple of shelves, swivelly chair and some hooks on the wall and door. Storage space as a result isn't great and you should bring another lamp....but the beds are incredibly inexplicably comfortable!
The walls are mostly just painted breeze blocks in an (un)lovely pale green....but cos the halls are old there is no problem with you sticking up posters, photos fliers and all the rest and just generally making more mess than in newer, posher halls, which is great! All the flats end up really personalised. Who wants sterile white walls anyway?!?!!
Overall, the best bit about Oak House is the vibe here. Massively sociable, laid back and fun, I couldn't ask for a better place to be!