CROWDS of Oxford Brookes students welcomed in the new academic year with a packed Freshers’ Fair featuring various freebies, societies and activities.

Approximately 140 stalls competed for students’ attention at the fair, from commercial stands, including Tinder, 001 Taxis and Amazon Prime to student-led societies from all walks of life.

The Brookes Union Freshers’ Fair, which took place on Friday during ‘Arrivals Week’ – better known as Freshers’ Week – at the John Henry Brookes Building of the University’s Headington Campus, saw thousands of students make the most free pizza, boxing demonstration, golf tasters and countless other organisations that they can join for the year.

The Students’ Union describe the event as an opportunity for new students to find out more about life at Brookes, join societies and speak to local and national businesses.

The union currently supports more than 100 student societies, the majority of which were represented at the fair.

Some of the more unusual societies involved included the Tabletop Gaming Society, Dog Lovers’ Society and Quidditch Society.

‘Panda dance lessons’ and ‘cuddles with Earl’ (a pink toy elephant) were even on offer from the Oxford Brookes Confucius Society which teaches Chinese to students, and Brookes Library, while volunteering groups like the Social Work Society were also represented.

Students crammed into a hall to sign up to the various societies ahead of term beginning today.

Josephine Bushby, the union’s vice-president for societies development, said: “Freshers’ Fair is an incredible event that demonstrates what’s on offer and draws in thousands of new students.

“Our societies are the most important part of the fair - getting involved is a great way for students to meet like-minded people, who may well go on to be their friends for life.

“Plus the fair is the place to pick up freebies.”

For more information about joining Brookes societies, visit

Oxford University’s Freshers Week takes place at the beginning of October, ahead of their term starting on Sunday, October 7.