SU Outlets a success

Despite the redevelopment of Union South and the credit crunch beginning to bite, the Students’ Union have announced that its food and beverage outlets are doing much better than anticipated.

While refusing to give any exact figures, Mike Pidgeon, Communications Officer, was keen to highlight the particular success of the Grad@Cholo which has been trading at a higher level than it was in its old home, upstairs in Union South. Pidgeon described it as “nothing but a phenomenal achievement” and said that “The entire Cholo area has been revitalised as a result.”

Asked whether he thought that the Graduate had lost some of its character, though, Pidgeon responded by saying that he loved the new Grad@Cholo, “Being able to always a find a seat, plenty of pool tables and proper pub grub all contribute to what I see as an even better atmosphere than what we had before.”

However, not all students agree with him. Will Brierley, a second-year physics student, said, “The Grad@Cholo hasn’t got the same atmosphere as the old Grad had last year. It’s lost its pub feel and is too open. I preferred the more enclosed, intimate atmosphere upstairs.”

The same sorts of criticisms have been made of the TES and Tempo with many in particular raising concerns about the heat of the TES.

Despite this, both have seen above-budget turnovers in the first half of term with the SU mainly putting it down to a successful Freshers’ fortnight and its quick response to some of the negative student feedback.

Aside from the Grad@Cholo, Union South’s other two outlets, The Bread Oven and Kami Lounge, are doing “as well as was expected” given their location.

The Boar spoke to students queuing about why it appealed to them. Joanne Finkley, a third year chemist, said “I love the Bread Oven as the meal deals are pretty affordable.”

Andy Glyde, Governance & Finance Officer, said that all of this spells great news for students, “As with all of our commercial income, the money raised by these new outlets will help to fund all of the student services we operate at the Union, everything from the free Student Advice Centre to the funding of society and sports club activity.”

However, when asked whether the extra income could be put towards lowering prices or towards more drink deals, Pidgeon admitted that there are no plans to extend the offers for the time being.

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