Royal Holloway Students' Union
The Royal Holloway Students' Union (SURHUL) is a students union for Royal Holloway, University of London It "has a reputation as one of the best unions in the London area", in the words of The Independent. The Students' Union provides much of the on-campus entertainment, through to organising and sponsoring the sport clubs and special-interest societies, on top of providing advice and counselling to students through the Student Advice Centre.
Like most Students' Unions in the United Kingdom, SURHUL is run entirely by the student body, headed by a team of elected student officers, including four full-time salaried Sabbatical Officers, having been elected for one year. In keeping with democratic practice, the elected Officers' executive power is held in check by the legislative power of General Meetings. The Sabbatical Officers also have 15 unpaid volunteers (elected Executive Officers) at their assistance. In order to supervise the administration and commercial activities of the Union, 20 permanent members of staff are employed. More than £1 million a year accounts for the Union's turnover. The Union uses the employment of 250 student staff, and also runs an accreditation scheme for the student staff and volunteers.
Royal Holloway's Student Union usually provides entertainment seven days a week, with a function hall which holds 1,200 people, three bars, a coffee shop and administrative offices all located within the Union's main building. The Students' Union also controls three other student-run bars; Medicine, The Stumble Inn and Tommy's. Union events have attracted acts such as Trevor Nelson and Tim Westwood. An annual Summer Ball is held at the Founder's Building at the year's end, with a survivor's breakfast the following 6am. The likes of Girls Aloud, Lemar, Jason Donovan, Alesha Dixon and Wheatus have all headlined at the Ball. There are also weekly market days, at which a variety of items are sold including fresh fruit, vegetables, books, and there are also CD sales.
Over 100 student societies and clubs, run by a committee of students, are put on through the Union. Societies include Academic Societies like the Politics and International Relations Society (which takes part in the NMUN) or the Classical Society and recreational societies like the Comedy Society (which hosts stand up evenings throughout term time), The Institute for Impure Science (IFIS aka the Sci-fi and Fantasy society), and Anime and Manga, which won society of the year for 2004/05.
The oldest society on campus is the Savoy Opera Society which was established many decades ago and still performs two to three comic operettas a year. The Union also maintains a number of sports club, catering to sports as diverse as rowing, ultimate and a competitive cheerleading squad, the RH Tom Cats. The 2007/08 "Sports Club of the Year" award went to the Bears Basketball Club. The 2009 "Sports Club of the Year" award went to the Lacrosse Club.
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