Festival Season!

June is quickly approaching, which means Festival time for Glasgow!

Have a look at the info below for some of the excellent events about to hit the city in the coming month.

Kicking it off this weekend is the annual Gibson Street Gala. Hosted on Gibson Street right next to the University (and down the road from the St Andrews building) the Gala is this Sunday 31st of May and runs from 12-6pm. From Flamenco dancers to food stalls the Gala is a great way to get into that summer spirit!


The following week brings the annual West End Parade to the streets of Glasgow. Sunday 7th of June from 11am-6pm performers, artists and musicians line the streets of the West end from the Botanics to Partick for a day of dancing, food and fun!


The Glasgow Science Festival also kicks off in June – a perfect way to indulge your geeky fascinations or learn more about interesting topics from exploring the science behind how to make Gin, to understanding more about local food production in Scotland. The Festival offers a range of events for families and adults alike and runs from the 4th-14th of June.


Finally for all you music enthusiasts we have the Glasgow Jazz Festival. Running from the 24th – 28th of June it’s a great way to indulge your musical whims with hundreds of acts from around the world to choose from.

That’s all for June, but what a line up! A great way to spend your June break. Let us know if you go to any of the festivals – we’d love to see your photos!

– Alex


Having a Barbecue?


You can bring various foods to barbecue. Here is a helpful list of things that you can bring along with you.  You can buy most of these things from a local supermarket.

  1. Cheese burgers, chicken burgers and vegetable burgers. Remember to bring buns/bread and cheese too.
  2. Various vegetables can also be used, often as a side dish. Things like sweet potatoes, mushrooms, Brussel sprouts, and even corn (Maize)
  3. Fish in particular salmon fish.
  4. Different type of Kebabs which can be purchased from the local butcher.
  5. You can also bring along a Pizza.
  6. Hot Dogs
  7. Chicken Breast

Remember to bring different types of sauces, drinks etc. with you.

These links might be helpful:




For students who have a dietary requirement of Halal meats, there are many Halal meat shops in the west end. The KRK Continental meat shop is a popular place to buy your meats. This can be found on 286 Woodlands Road, Glasgow, Glasgow City G3 6NE.

Keeping Food Cool

When travelling with meat, it is a good idea to store it in a Cool Bag to keep it at a low temperature. You can buy these in the Frozen Foods section of any big supermarket, such as Tesco, Morrison’s, Asda, Waitrose or Iceland. They are usually quite cheap (around £1-£3).

Keep your cool bag in the fridge, ideally overnight, before the trip and put your meat into it just before leaving.

Barbecue Safety

Make sure your barbecue is in good working order.

Ensure the barbecue is on a flat site, well away from a shed, trees or shrubs.

Keep children, garden games and pets well away from the cooking area.

Never leave the barbecue unattended.

Never cook raw meat.

Wear safe clothing. Wear clothing that does not have hanging shirt tails, frills, or apron strings that can catch fire.

Don’t move a hot grill.

Never walk about with a barbecue of any kind, or lit charcoal

Extreme Sport!

Ever fancied doing something more exciting with your time at Glasgow? How about jumping from a plane in a sexy yellow jumpsuit? Or maybe partaking in a bit of equestrian jumping? Or maybe delving the deeps with the dive club is something you’ve always fancied.Below is our list of top-picks for Glasgow Uni’s more extreme Sports and Societies:

NOTE all students MUST become a member of GU Sport before they are able to join any of the following clubs – simply pop along to the Sports Reception in the Wolfson Building to check out the membership costs (£60/year – Free for students in Glasgow Uni Accommodation).

Glasgow Sub-Aqua

If you’ve ever fancied getting your PADI qualification and hitting the diving hotspots of the UK (yes they exist) then this is the club for you. The Sub-Aqua club accommodates new and experienced divers and offers a range of theory and practical courses alongside weekend trips. As the website says: ‘For banter and bubbles come and take the plunge with us!’

Glasgow Martial Arts

The University hosts a number of martial arts clubs from Aikido to Taekwando. All our martial arts clubs are an excellent mix of experienced teachers and keen new students. If you’ve been practicing your art for years or are trying to go from zero to black belt these friendly and welcoming clubs are the place to go. For a full list of styles on offer check out the Glasgow Sport website.


Glasgow Cheerleading

A sport usually associated with our friends across the pond in the USA, Cheerleading has hit the British shores with a bang in recent years, with fun vibrant clubs popping up the breadth and length of the UK. While most of us probably have our ideas shaped by American media of elitist groups, the cheerleading society at Glasgow is fun and welcoming to new pompom practitioners. Cheerleader? Dancer? Tumbler? Gymnast? Beginner? Looking for a new challenge? Glasgow University Cheerleading Club has something for everyone. Sign up today!


Glasgow Gaelic Football & Shinty

If you fancy trying some of Scotland’s more traditional sports then Gaelic Football (Like footbal, but not) and Shinty (Like Hockey, but not) are the clubs for you. These sports are fast paced and super fun with large teams and a vibrant atmosphere.


Glasgow Mountaineering (GUM)

If bats and balls aren’t your type of thing then perhaps try your hands (and toes) at the Mountaineering Club. Scotland has some of the best outdoor climbing and mountaineering spots in the world and GUM embraces this with gusto. Mountain Biking, Mountain Climbing, Scrambling, Hiking – if you can do it on or around a Mountain then GUM will be there. The society organises a range of trips and equipment hire for beginners and experienced crag rats alike.


Glasgow Riding Club (GURC)

Ever fancied yourself a bit of a Cowboy? Or maybe you imagine yourself prancing around on the back of a beautiful Dressage Horse? GURC is the place for you. The club offers riding lessons and events for beginners and seasoned equestrians alike and currently boasts around 100 members. The best part is, you don’t even need a horse! The club, through their host yard, allows students to test out their riding legs without having to invest in your own stallion. Who could say neigh to that?

Glasgow Surf Club

Scotland’s coast  has some of the best surfing in the UK, our seas may be cold, but our excellent waves makes taking the plunge totally worth it. The club offers a range of trips and lessons and also offers the chance for more experienced surfers to compete BUCS (British Universities and Colleges Sport) level. If a simple board doesn’t get your heart racing then never fear, the club also hosts Kite Surfing, Wind Surfing and any other water sport you can think of.

Glasgow Skydiving

Our final high octane mega adrenaline sport on the list is Glasgow Skydive. If you’ve ever wanted to know what a cloud looks like from the inside (white and damp apparently) or know the rush of flinging yourself from a plane door 4000ft in the air then this is the club for you. Jumps start from £25 and the club arranges weekly trips to dropzones around Scotland for you to try!

Hopefully one or more of these clubs tickle your fancy. If you want info on a different sport not offered here please let us know and we can find out!

– Alex

Body Language

Some of our students have expressed that learning a new language through repetitive lessons and tiresome academic-speak can become a bit of a grind. Sometimes you need to unwind in order to speak freely! A few keen yogis have asked about any local classes or sessions they can join to make new friends and practice their new skills. Below is a list of local Yoga classes which you can try out in order to get your mind & body balance back on track!

Bikram Yoga

One of the more famous styles of Yoga, Bikram classes usually run for 90 minute sessions in a hot room (40°C) and flow through a mix of 26 different postures and breathing exercises. Currently there is a Bikram yoga studio just off of Byres Road at: 1 Dowanside Lane, Glasgow G12 9BZ. Currently the Bikram studio is promoting an introductory offer for new students: £30 for 30 consecutive days of unlimited yoga!

Infinity Hot Yoga

This boutique yoga studio located in the Merchant City is a beautifully designed space with excellent teachers trained in the practice of hot yoga – Bikram. Infinity is also offering an introductory deal of £30 for 30 consecutive classes, and charges £7 for drop-in sessions.


Yogasarvasya Studio

Located in Partick the Yogasarvasya Studio is a smaller intimate option accomodating up to 16 students from beginners to intermediates. Their current 4 week block courses cost from £28 and up. This studio is all about embracing the philosophical and physical sides of yoga with weekend workshops and deep meditations. If you need to bring some calm to your life, this is probably the place for you!


White Lotus Yoga

This small studio, again based in a lovely location in Partick, offers two styles of yoga practice, Tantra and Hatha. Hatha classes focus on the more physical and technical side of postures and practice while the Tantra style embraces the more energetic, meditative and spiritual elements of your yoga practice! Drop in classes are £9 per class, or a block of 6 weeks is £48 (£7, £35 for full time students).

Shanti Yoga

Located in the gorgeous ‘Hidden Lane’ area of Finneston, Shanti Yoga is one of Glasgow’s more well-known Yoga studios and offers a really wide range of courses from vinyasa style flow, pregnancy yoga, zen practices, restorative yoga and reiki. Along with their brilliant yoga classes, Shanti also boasts a range of massage treatments, always a nice treat after hunching over your desk for hours! All classes are currently 2 for £10 or if you are an absolute yoga-nut you can go for the £60 unlimited monthly pass and bend and twist to your heart’s content!


Yoga Meditation Healing Centre

Located just off of Great Wester Road this Yoga centre does what it says on the tin: a special focus on meditative and healing practices this studio really gets to grips with the yoga fundamentals and shamanic philosophies of different styles. The centre also offers a range of meditation workshops and retreats – so if you’re getting tired of Glasgow Grey you can whisk away for a weekend of pure relaxation, perfect for exam stress! Single classes range from £6-9 and the centre also offers different block booking deals.

Yoga is a wonderful way to de-stress after a week, (or day!) of hard work. Give yourself a chance to meet new people and de-clutter your mind leaving you free and open to embrace new challenges.

Namaste! – Alex

Exercise facilities – just for the girls

It’s getting cold outside and we all know that exercise is a great way to keep warm (and healthy). We know that for many of the ladies in our group, especially our lovely Muslim sisters, it’s important to have access to health and fitness facilities which are for women only.
While there are not as many resources as we would like, there are a few! Here are some links which you might find interesting:

The Forge Fitness Centre

1173 Gallowgate, East Glasgow, 10 minute walk from Duke Street train station. This women-only gym offers good value membership, from only £22 per month.

Scotstoun Leisure Centre Health Suite

Tuesdays 8pm-9:45pm (72 Danes Drive, North West Glasgow, 17 minute walk from Scotstounhill train station). This mixed gym offers a women-only session on Tuesday evenings in its well-equipped gym.

Glasgow Club Holyrood

Aikenhead Road (South Glasgow, 10 minute walk from Crosshill train station), Thursdays 5:30pm-8pm. This sports centre offers women-only swimming sessions on Thursday evenings. The centre cannot always guarantee a female lifeguard in attendance, so it may be wise to phone before you go: 0141 276 1500

Commit2BeFit with Tess
These women only exercise classes are held in two locations in the evening:

Queen’s Park Parish Church hall (South Glasgow, 170 Queen’s Drive, near Queen’s Park train station): Thursdays at 7pm and 7:45pm
Knightswood St Margaret’s Parish Church hall (West End, 2000 Great Western Rd, 15 minutes’ walk from Anniesland train station): Wednesdays at 6:15pm and 6:30pm
You can contact the exercise instructor using the Commit2BeFit Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Commit2BFit-Glasgow/684141574929314?fref=ts

It is always a good idea to telephone before you visit a venue, to ensure that they have the right facilities for you.
Many thanks to Amina Muslim Women’s Resource Centre, Glasgow, for helping me to find this information 🙂 You can find out more about the services offered by Amina at: http://www.mwrc.org.uk/

Jenny x

Need a hobby? Join a club!

Are some of you missing your hobby from home? Looking for a club or society to join here at the University of Glasgow, but no idea where they are or how to join? Here are some handy hints to help.

Joining a club, whether it be sport, music, art, maths, debating, science or whatever you are into, it is a really good way to meet like-minded people, make new friends and get more out of your university experience. Many students join clubs during their undergraduate and continue to be friends with their club mates for the rest of their lives! Most importantly, it is a great way to practice speaking English away from class! Unfortunately, most clubs based in the university are now on holiday until the new term in September but if you are sticking around for postgraduate studies after the summer, now is the time to start planning the clubs you would like to join.

The university website has a list of many clubs and societies, with un-to-date contact details for the club. Most of the clubs will have drop-in sessions at the beginning of term and the website is already giving information on when these might be. If you see a club that you would like to join, but there is no drop-in sessions information, then there is no harm is sending short email asking if the club are looking for new members and where they meet. Here is the link to list of clubs and societies –

Sports: http://www.gla.ac.uk/services/sport/whatson/club/

Arts: http://www.gla.ac.uk/schools/cca/studentlife/clubsandsocieties/

The SRC also have a really useful list of clubs and societies affiliated to them. Most of these clubs are student run and very friendly and always looking for new members!

SRC: http://www.glasgowstudent.net/clubs/find-a-club/

If you are keen to join a club now, then there are plenty around the west end and the city centre. Depending on what you are looking for, there are often posters up in cafés, libraries and shops advertising the clubs so if you see something you might like, get in contact to ask about the club. Some may have a small weekly cost and it is good to get in contact ahead of time to ask what this is and if there is an option for a free first time trial.

Here are some local classes that you might like to consider.

Enlightenment in naturehttp://www.bikramglasgow.com/ – A yoga class, which takes place in a very hot temperature. The venue is very close to the university on Byres Road. It is good idea to check the website before you go for their advice on how to prepare for the class.

dancehttp://www.danceglasgow.com/ – Dance classes available to everyone, no matter your age, body shape or ability.

choirhttp://www.glasgowwestend.co.uk/whatson/voice-beat-multicultural-choice.php – A locally based, multicultural singing group, or world music community choir, based in the West End of Glasgow.

sportshttp://www.glasgowwestend.co.uk/whatson/jauntsport.php – A guide to various sports clubs in the West End of Glasgow.

If there is a club, class, activity or anything else that you would like to pursue, then the best way to find out is simply to ask! Come along to Chat Club and our friendly EFL staff will be happy to recommend a reputable club or research where the class may take place.


Glasgow Fair Weekend

It’s a three day weekend! So, what can you do for fun? Obviously, you can attend an EFL trip to Culzean Castle or Pollok House and Country Park on Saturday, but you might like to spend the rest of your free time exploring Glasgow.

What is Glasgow Fair?
Glasgow Fair is the oldest traditional holiday in the city, dating back to the 12th Century. It was a time when merchants would close their businesses on Fair Friday (usually mid-July) and take two weeks off. Until the 1960s, families from Glasgow would often spend these two weeks away from the city, usually travelling ‘doon the watter’ (down the water), along the River Clyde to the West Coast. They would travel on beautiful old paddle steamer ships, like the famous Waverley (which is still in use) and spend time on the beach. You might not believe that you could sunbathe on a Scottish beach, but in those days most Glaswegians had never been abroad, and perhaps didn’t really know what hot weather was! When air travel to foreign countries became cheaper and more accessible, the practice of spending your holidays in Scotland became less common, but many people have recently started doing it again, as a cheaper option.
These days (unfortunately) we only get Fair Monday off (this year, it is Monday 21st July) and many businesses stay open anyway. But there are still lots of interesting things to do!
Free Ferry Boat rides, the Riverside Museum and the Govan Stones
Until 21st September, there will be a FREE ferry service between Govan and the Riverside Museum (Glasgow’s Museum of Transport). Glasgow has a proud history of shipbuilding and this is a chance to get a glimpse into this old fashioned way of travel. Until the late 20th century, many people in Glasgow used the ferry to travel from one side of the city to the other. For example, when my father attended the University of Glasgow in the 1970s, he used to catch the ferry and then walk to University Avenue!
You can board the ferry at Govan Pier, located east of Water Row, and sail to the Riverside Museum, where entry is free, and you can see great exhibits about Scottish life and history: http://www.glasgowlife.org.uk/museums/riverside/visit/Pages/How-to-get-here.aspx

govan ferry
Or you can sail from the Riverside Museum to Govan, where there is a market at Govan Cross, selling fresh fruit, vegetables and other foods, and often some second-hand treasures. You could also visit Govan’s beautiful parish church, which is home to a unique collection of early medieval Scottish carvings, known as the Govan Stones: http://www.thegovanstones.org.uk/

govan stones
Queen’s Baton Relay
The Queen’s Baton, which contains a message from the Queen, to be read at the Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremony on 23rd July, has been carried by runners through 70 different countries throughout the Commonwealth area, on a 248 day journey since October 2013. Now it is returning to Glasgow, and you will be able to see the runners carrying it through Springburn Park (west Glasgow) on Sunday 20th July or Victoria Park (also west Glasgow) on Monday 21st July! There is sure to be a fun atmosphere. More specific details of where you can see the Queen’s Baton Relay are here: http://downloads.glasgow2014.com/sites/default/files/CG0424_Factsheet_Update_22_April_AW4.pdf

Day 26 of the Queen's Baton Relay in Scotland

Whatever you do, be sure to have lots on fun! 🙂