University of St Andrews alumni remember their student days

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Fabulous photograph slideshow with audio monologues by St Andrews’ alumni and alumnae Siobhan Redmond, Brian Taylor, Rosemary Goring and Hazel Irvine.

I was a Divinity undergraduate at St Andrews between 1989–1993, graduating with a 2:1 Bachelor of Divinity in Practical Theology and Christian Ethics. I returned in 2006 to work as Assistant Information Architect/Web Manager.

St Andrews is a fabulous place to live and study in, and a fabulous place and work.

I had always assumed that I would go to university in Edinburgh, but after an open day at St Mary’s College in 1988 that all changed: St Andrews was the place for me. It was small and intimate. The kind of place that a quiet, wee Scottish Borders lad like me could cope with, without feeling overwhelmed by a noisy, busy city.

I feel immensely proud of being a University of St Andrews‘ graduate.

(Thanks for my colleague Duncan Stephen (@DuncanBSS on Twitter) for the heads-up on this BBC Scotland article.)

Day 6: A song that reminds you of somewhere #30dsc

30 day challenge day 6: A song that reminds you of somewhere

WARNING! This video contains flashing images, swearing and scenes which some people may find disturbing.

Slayer—Raining Blood (live)

One summer (I guess it must have been around 1987; I thought it was 1986 but the album Reign In Blood wasn’t released until October 1986 so I guess it wasn’t) I went on a Scripture Union camp to Whitley Bay, near Newcastle-upon-Tyne. We stayed in some kind of holiday accommodation attached to a church there—it might have been the Baptist Church; someone with a better memory will be able to remind me.

Anyway, out shopping in Whitley Bay one afternoon my school friend David bought the latest Slayer album Reign In Blood on 12″ vinyl. Not the kind of album that you would automatically associate with a Christian youth camp, but there you have it. We had slightly different tastes, I guess.

In the evenings, once the younger campers were safely tucked up in their bunk beds the older campers were allowed to stay up late. So we would creep down to the lounge in the basement and crank out Reign In Blood at loud volume.

What an album! 28 minutes of thrash metal. It’s an album that is still regarded by many as the thrash album and one of the most influential metal albums of all time.

To me though, that album reminds me of sitting around with my school friends Kenny, David and Warren, laughing and having fun in a church hall basement in North Tyneside.