For many students, starting university means moving away from home with which comes finding a place to live. Most first-year students choose to live in student halls, which offer comfort, security and a fantastic opportunity to meet new people. First-year undergraduates are granted a place in one of the student halls provided by either LSE or the University of London. For the first year of my studies at LSE, I’ve been living in Nutford House, an intercollegiate student hall, run by the University of London, located in Marylebone. With some pros and cons, I’ve enjoyed my experience there so far, and I’m excited to give you an account of my experience.
Nutford House is a period building, providing spaces to live for approximately 200 students from a variety of London universities such as LSE, UCL or the Royal Academy of Music. It is a catered accommodation, which means that breakfast, dinner and brunch on the weekends are provided as part of the rent, and there is no kitchen available for use of the students. The rooms are separated between three buildings, with the majority located on one of the four floors of the main building, and most of them are small single rooms with shared bathrooms. Apart from that the hall offers a common room with a piano, a lounge with a TV, a garden, a quiet study room, a music room, a bike shed and laundry facilities.
The accommodation is located in an amazing neighbourhood in Marylebone which is a very safe, residential area that is calm and well-managed. For sports enthusiasts and nature lovers, the beautiful Hyde park and Reagent’s Park are just a short walk away. For shopping, there is Oxford street just around the corner, and there are also a few grocery shops, restaurants and coffee shops a few minutes away. If you’re interested in sports, you can find a sports and leisure centre with a gym and swimming pool five minutes away from the hall.
However, it’s important to bear in mind that Nutford House is placed a bit further away from LSE and the walk to campus takes around 50 minutes with the shortest way going through the busy Oxford street. However, if you take the central line tube from Marble Arch station the journey takes only 20 minutes, while the bus will get you to Holborn in around 30 minutes. Another great way to get to campus, which I used is cycling which takes around 20 minutes. Nutford house offers a shared bike shed, so it is really easy to keep a bike and use it to get almost anywhere.
Nutford House is a catered hall, so cooking for yourself, unfortunately, is not an option. Each floor has a small pantry with a kettle, microwave and a tiny fridge, which often gets quite full as it is shared between a lot of people. The food is quite varied, there are always three dinner options, with one of them vegetarian, however, there are no vegan options available. While cooking is something you need to consider, having meals together with other residents is a great way to socialise and catch up with friends after a long day at university.
What I like about Nutford House are its shared facilities and spaces which foster a sense of community and a cosy atmosphere. There is a large common room with sofas, bookshelves and a piano, where residents can spend their time together, and where a lot of fun activities are organised by the hall, including concerts, food buffets or game nights. There is also a smaller room with a TV perfect for film nights, with a door to the garden, which is a great place to study or have lunch when the weather is nice. In the second building, there is a games room with table tennis and pool table and a music room, open to use for anyone interested.
Overall, I would recommend Nutford House since it’s a nice, safe student hall, where you will meet a lot of interesting people and make great friends. However, before choosing, make sure to consider different factors such as location or cooking and make a choice that best suits your needs.