halls
Image: Warwick Media Library

Hall Wars: A complete guide to Warwick’s first year halls

Applying for your first year accommodation can be daunting and stressful, particularly if you haven’t visited the halls you’re applying to. Warwick guarantees on-campus accommodation for most first-years. Of course, you can always check the specific details on the Warwick on-campus accommodation web-pages, but what better way to decide where to live in your first year than reading the honest experiences of former freshers.

Arthur Vick, Bhaarghavi Iyer

Rooms: Single, en-suite

Cost: £168 pw

Let: 35 weeks

People per kitchen: 14

Fancy having a big kitchen and an en-suite room on campus? Then, Arthur Vick is the place to be. With arguably the most amount of storage shelves compared to any other room, a perfectly central location on campus and just 10 minutes away from Tesco, my first year in AV was incredibly memorable. While it may be more expensive than Rootes with a shorter let, AV is the perfect balance between quiet studying and absolutely wild parties. If you’re worried about having to move out during the Easter holidays (a particularly common concern for international students), don’t worry because there are plenty of storage companies offering to hold your things until you move back in.  

Arthur Vick in winter / Image: Wikimedia Commons

Arthur Vick in winter / Image: Wikimedia Commons


Bluebell

Rooms: Single, en-suite

Cost: £181 pw

Let: 40 weeks

People per kitchen: 8

Situated on central campus, Bluebell is the only accommodation on campus with a double bed in each room. With a generous en-suite bathroom, Bluebell residents benefit from a shared communal space besides their kitchen. You can read more about Bluebell here.


Claycroft

Rooms: Single, bathroom shared between two students

Cost: £126 pw

Let: 40 weeks (50 weeks if postgraduate student)

People per kitchen: 8

Located a short, two-minute walk from Tesco and Cannon Park shopping centre, Claycroft residents benefit from a perfect campus location whilst avoiding a trek to buy their essentials. You can read more about Claycroft here.


Cryfield, Georgia Simcox

Rooms: Single, shared bathroom between six students

Cost: £90 pw

Let: 40 weeks

People per kitchen: 16

My favourite thing about living in Cryfield was there was always someone around. I lived on the first floor of block two and had 23 people on my floor. However, we did have two kitchens, so luckily there weren’t 23 of us trying to share a fridge! Renovated in 2016, Cryfield’s kitchens are brand new with induction hobs. On average, 16 students share a kitchen and there are six to a bathroom. I never had an issue with having to wait for the toilet or shower; however, there would sometimes be a wait for hob space if everyone tried to cook at once. The corridors were very narrow – so if you happened to bump into the cleaner on your way back from the shower (an unfortunately common occurrence), it would be a tight squeeze.  


Heronbank, Cecily Grace Morgan

Rooms: Single, en-suite

Cost: £146 pw

Let: 40 weeks (50 weeks if postgraduate student)

People per kitchen: 8

Surrounded by greenery and geese, Heronbank is situated in Lakeside Village, a bucolic corner of campus fifteen minutes from the piazza and the main academic buildings. However, whilst the surroundings may be quiet, Heronbank is far from boring; it’s a stunning, lively, and rather swanky place to spend your first year, offering everything a Warwick student could wish for. Size is definitely one of Heronbank’s strong points. As well as an enviable en-suite bathroom, the rooms are huge and feature plenty of storage space. Furthermore, with each flat housing just eight students, the kitchen is never too crowded or too messy, but this doesn’t mean that the accommodation isn’t sociable. When you live in Heronbank, you don’t need a key to enter individual flats, making it easy to wander to other parts of the building and make friends. Within the first few days, my flat coupled up with a flat above to form a large friendship group, so if you’re lucky enough to live here, don’t hesitate to go exploring. Maybe I’m biased, but I don’t think campus accommodation gets much better than this. Heronbank was the perfect place to call home in my first year and I hope that all the freshers moving in this September love it as much as my flatmates and I did. As we still occasionally reminisce in our group chat, HB forever! 


Jack Martin, Miruna Mihăilă

Rooms: Single, en-suite

Cost: £165 pw

Let: 35 weeks

People per kitchen: 13

As someone who values their privacy, Jack Martin was the perfect accommodation for me as it has an en-suite bathroom. Going back to my room from the library at 5 a.m. in the morning (which I wouldn’t advise doing) used to be such a relief. I could take a long bath and sleep in late with no one to disturb me. The halls are quiet except for the big nights out when students pre-drink in Jack Martin because Rootes is too full. So if you’re looking for getting some peace and quiet from time to time, Jack Martin is for you! Not too loud, not too boring and right on central campus. 


Lakeside, Gezy Vaughan

Rooms: Single, en-suite

Cost: £145 pw

Let: 40 weeks (50 weeks if postgraduate student)

People per kitchen: 8

Lakeside, as the name might suggest, is situated beside Warwicks beautiful lakes. The area is perfect for anybody who enjoys wildlife as the infamous Warwick geese usually reside in the sleepy corner of campus. Lakeside accommodation is one of the cheapest options for anybody wanting an en-suite, with the rooms themselves fairly largeOne downside however of the accommodation is how quiet it is, minus the calls of the geese. Lakeside Village is roughly a 10-minute walk from the centre of campus, and upwards of 20 minutes to Canon Park, so if you enjoy seclusion and a close-knit hall system, Lakeside is for you. However, if you would enjoy rowdier halls, it’s probably not the best option. Despite being quiet, and an often forgotten accommodation, the friendships you make in Lakeside will last throughout your time at Warwick. And due to the close proximity to each other, and seclusion from the rest of campus, you’ll form close bonds with the people you live with. 

The geese by Lakeside / Image: Gezy Vaughan

The geese by Lakeside / Image: Gezy Vaughan


Redfern, Alice Marmara

Rooms: Single, shared bathroom between five students

Cost: £91 pw

Let: 40 weeks

People per kitchen: 5

“Redfern? Where’s that?” I can’t remember how many times I heard this during my first year at Warwick as I tried to explain where I lived. Even though it isn’t one of the biggest halls on campus I found it a good place to live. Living with just four other people meant you could get to know everyone well, perhaps better than if you lived in bigger halls like Rootes. One of my best friends who lived in Bluebell often came to my flat as she found it a friendlier, more intimate environment than her own flat. The location was perfect, meaning you could get up for your 9am at 8:45 and still make it there on time, ideal for people who value their sleep like me. Whilst I was lucky enough not to experience it, building work around Redfern began just last year and will continue through this year, which I can imagine could sometimes be noisy. Otherwise, Redfern tends to be fairly quiet which is great if you enjoy serenity. But if you’d prefer a loud, bustling environment, Redfern might now be the right fit for you. 


Rootes, Mary Francis

Rooms: Twin and single rooms, shared bathroom between six students

Cost: £96-99 pw

Let: 40 weeks (35 weeks if residing in International House)

People per kitchen: 19

Rootes probably has the loudest reputation on campus – notorious for being the party accommodation; indeed, my experience of Rootes included many late nights and copious amounts of alcohol. However, I think the best thing about Rootes is really that it’s impossible not to make friends in this accommodation. My flat in first year had 16 people in it, and living in A B C Rootes (the proper Rootes blocks, let’s be real) meant that we were very easily connected to 11 other kitchens, each with up to 16 people too. This made meeting a diverse and interesting set of people extremely easily – people from all over the country, all over the world and from a variety of incomes and backgrounds. Not only was my flat a wonderful group of people, but some of the best friends I made at Warwick lived just downstairs to me, and indeed my second and third year houses have been made up of different people from ABC Rootes, indicating just how well connected we were. This is, of course, not forgetting to mention that Rootes is literally a two second walk from our King Disco Dave on a Wednesday night (coat check who?), and its convenient location meant that rolling out of bed five minutes before a lecture was a feasible and attractive option.  


Sherbourne, Arisa Loomba

Rooms: Single, en-suite

Cost: £155 pw

Let: 40 weeks

People per kitchen: 13

I could not have made a better decision when putting Sherbourne as my top accommodation option for first year. I hadn’t seen it on an open day so it was a bit of pot luck but it totally paid off. Sherbourne combines some of the best aspects of other Warwick accommodations. It has single ensuite rooms of around thirteen to a flat, as well as a more hotel/apartment feel, similar to (but cheaper than) Bluebell. It’s also cheaper than the likes of Jack Martin and Arthur Vick, which I’d argue is less plush than Sherbourne, with the only real downsides being its proximity to campus and slightly smaller room sizes. Yes, it’s a real pain to have to walk fifteen to twenty minutes to campus for lectures when your friends in Rootes can stroll out of bed at 8:55. Tesco is a trek (nothing that a Tesco delivery can’t fix though), and walking back from the Copper Rooms or bus interchange at 3am in midwinter is far from appealing. But it all makes for a lovely community feel that, combined with the larger flats and busy kitchens, means that Sherbourne is one of the most sociable accommodations without the rowdiness of Rootes. It’s spacious and quiet enough for you to get a good night’s sleep but there’s always someone different to talk to in the kitchen when you get sick of one another and it allows you to get to know such a broad range of different people. I was lucky that my flat as a whole bonded really well and we had the best year together, but even if you don’t, there’s bound to be at least one person out of thirteen that you get along with! Having a large flat means there’s always a big enough group up for a night out, movie night or just to lie in the corridor for hours complaining about deadlines and having a laugh. I had friends that would come over in the evenings and for pre drinks from their more quiet accommodations because of the great atmosphere. The one that Sherbourne does lack is a common room and study space but the friendliness more than makes up for this. Many of my strongest uni friendships now are the ones I formed while living at Sherbourne and without a doubt it made my first year experience – I can’t recommend it enough! 

A typical Sherbourne kitchen / Image: Gurpreet Dhaliwal

A typical Sherbourne kitchen / Image: Gurpreet Dhaliwal


Tocil, Matthew Dale

Rooms: Single, shared bathroom between four students

Cost: £113 pw

Let: 43 weeks

People per kitchen: 12

I have so many fond memories of my fresher’s year in Tocil. Its location is ideal being fairly central. It’s next to the sports centre, only a short walk to the SU/piazza, the library, and Tesco. It’s also near lots of other accommodation halls which means that many friends you make outside of your flat will be nearby; I was very lucky that many of my friends lived just a short walk away in AV1. The flats are the comfortable, mid-range accommodation you’d expect. The rooms were nice, and we had enough showers. Asides from the lack of common room and small kitchen space, everything in my Tocil flat was good. There are six flats per block, and a weird quirk is each flat is separate by locked doors meaning you can’t wander between flats as you would in other accommodation. It’s harder to befriend other flats in your block (something my flat never did) and there’s a risk of being trapped in a flat you don’t like. But as it’s twelve people per flat, chances are you’ll make good friends with at least someone. 


Westwood, Hazel Needham

Rooms: Single, shared bathroom between six students

Cost: £103-105 pw

Let: 40 weeks

People per kitchen: 17

It’s almost guaranteed that when you tell someone you’re living in Westwood, their response will be: ‘Eurgh really? I ventured to the Post Room the other day and it was so far.’ A look of pity will glint in their eye. Realistically, the walk to SUHQ is twenty minutes. But, don’t worry, all that walking is good for you! And if you have any seminars in Millburn House (on Westwood campus) you’re laughing. Despite the distance, there’s always something magical in finding another Westwooder when you’re on central campus. The true dream, however, is finding yourself a Westwood coursemate – someone to make those January morning lecture treks a little more bearable. 

The view from a Westwood window / Image: @hazella_ / Instagram

The view from a Westwood window / Image: @hazella_ / Instagram


Whitefields, Isabel Alexander

Rooms: Single, shared bathroom between six students

Cost: £76 pw

Let: 4o weeks

People per kitchen: 12

As far as Warwick accommodation goes, Whitefields doesn’t have the best reputation. It has a crude nickname and was included in a list of ten campus locations to cry on during Valentine’s Day last year. Of course, it isn’t the best accommodation on offer at Warwick, it costs less than £80 a week, and renovation is certainly overdue, but in spite of all this, I had an excellent time living there. Whitefields is not a block of flats, like other halls, but rather a set of individual houses which accommodate between nine and twelve students each. Another bonus is that each flat has a small common room, which offers extra communal space besides the kitchen. Luckily, I was placed in a flat with people with who are still my very close friends, and indeed I often wonder if I would have had a slightly less rosy memory of my time in Whitefields had it not been for the people I met there. Sharing a shower with five strangers isn’t the easiest of tasks, and being close to the SU is both a blessing and a curse, as whilst you are able to nip to and from the pub in minutes, you can also hear Mr Brightside playing in the Copper Rooms in the early hours of Thursday morning. If you’re looking to save a bit of cash, then Whitefields will more than suffice, if you can put up with fellow freshers constantly apologising for your plight when you tell them where you live, that is. 

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