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Read Catherine House Reviews
Although resembling a prison (in fact prison conditions are probably better) you really wouldn't want to change halls for a 1st year. The experience of living in a shit hole created a good social vibe among fellow house mates; people quickly began to bond in the social areas as there would be really nothing much to do otherwise. Catherine house is a love/hate relationship
Pretty horrid when you first get there and isn't what you expect uni halls to be. No common room - only benches to sit together - unsociable feel. Cleaning is awful and although we pay to have our room cleaned weekly it's usually every 3 weeks and the rooms get dusty very quickly. I found two boys socks under my bed when I first arrived which shows how bad the cleaning is even during the summer. Kitchen is average, enough for what you need but very old fashioned. Rooms are big but furniture is awful. Bed - very springy. Desk - full of writing in the draws and was black with dirt when I first got there so wiped it down. Cupboard - spacious but also full of writing. There are no drawers for clothes only hanging space and shelves. Floor - horrible, definitely recommend you bring a rug. As the accommodation is full board we have to go to the canteen for food. Food is ok however tends to be the same every week and lacks flavour. Occasional nice selection.