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Notice to students re collection of belongings

On Thursday 21 May, the UK government announced changes to their guidelines for students with belongings left in Halls of Residence and Colleges. Under these new guidelines, students who have possessions are now able to travel back to their university to collect them. All vacated rooms must be cleared using one of the options below - doing nothing is not an option!

There are various options:

  1. Collect in Person via a booked slot.
  2. Nominate another student to pack and collect for you.
  3. When restrictions allow, arrange for a packing company to come in securely to pack, collect and ship (including insurance) your belongings to your destination e.g. https://www.packsend.co.uk/cambridge/. This company is not endorsed by the College and other similar schemes may be available.
  4. Alternatively, the College can arrange a packing company for you on request and at your expense.
  5. If you packed your items ready to ship before you left, request that the College posts these on to you at your risk and expense. If you packed in a hurry without protecting items for shipping, used unsuitable containers or didn’t leave a list of what was in your boxes, you must choose either options 3 or 4 instead.
  6. Request unpacked items be packed by College staff and put into storage – this option is only for those unable to collect now (international students and vulnerable home students) and only if returning in Michaelmas term. We will send you a quote for packing and cleaning your room, based on an hourly rate of no more than c£20 per hour plus laundry costs.
  7. Please contact accommodation@girton.cam.ac.uk if your situation isn’t covered by any of the options above.

    I hope that the process runs as smoothly as possible, and thank you in advance for your cooperation. We are very sorry not to be able to provide reception and hospitality to your families collecting in the usual way, but we will help as much as we can and look forward to welcoming you and your families and friends back to College at a happier time in the future.

    All best wishes,

    Maureen Hackett, Junior Bursar

    Booking Information and FAQs

    Collection is via PRE BOOKED SLOTS ONLY, between Saturday 20 June and Friday 31 July.  If you arrive at College without having booked a slot, we regret that you will be turned away, no matter how far you have travelled.

    The booking form is here. Slots are mostly 2 hours long, with a couple of 4 hr slots per day for those packing for others as well as themselves.

    If another student has offered to pack/collect for you, you should fill in the appropriate nomination box on the form otherwise they won’t be permitted to access your room.

    Your booking will generate a confirmation email which you should bring with you.

    Please note that in the event of a covid outbreak in the flat/corridor you wish to access, we might have to cancel your visit at short notice.

    Please email accommodation@girton.cam.ac.uk to arrange any of these options.

    Your possessions are insured for secure storage in College, but if you need them to be packed and shipped abroad you or we must arrange a packing company to do this.

    If you are worried about costs/valuables, please contact accommodation@girton.cam.ac.uk

    *Location of Bookboxes, handwash points, designated WC and storage may vary over the booking period and will be signposted on your arrival.

    • If you or a member of your household have any symptoms of COVID-19 then you must not travel to collect your belongings. Please follow PHE guidance on self-isolation and notify the Porters of your cancellation.
    • Check that you have read and understand the current measures on social distancing: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/staying-safe-outside-your-home/staying-safe-outside-your-home
    • Follow the current PHE advice on safe travelling in the UK during COVID: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-safer-travel-guidance-for-passengers
    • Please bring any boxes, bags or suitcases that you will need with you and your appointment email, plus hand sanitiser.
    • Please also bring any Girton/faculty library books you have at home, your unicard and any College keys including your bike key if you are taking your bike home.
    • On your appointed day, arrive at College/Swirles shortly before your slot. At College, please park in Cloister Court, at Swirles, please park at the top of Pheasant Drive near the Lodge. You may bring one other person only to help.
    • Go to the designated handwash point* and thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
    • Check in at the Lodge (helper to stay outside please). Both Lodges have social distancing measures in place – you must observe them. Only one at a time in front of the counter staying 2m from Lodge staff at all times please.
    • The Duty Porter will issue your key/card (if you handed it in), sani wipes, black bags, and gloves and disposable face masks for you and your helper. A hoover will also be available to borrow.
    • The Duty Porter will direct you to your room following a designated route and will open any access gates necessary, e.g. back drive gate at College. Please clean touch points (door handles, bannisters) along the route as you go.
    • At the main site please do not use shared wcs in the residential areas.
    • At either site, if you are collecting from an occupied area, only you and not your helper should enter the shared kitchen; time spent in the shared areas should be kept as brief as possible and no contact with residents indoors please. (You may meet outside and distanced, after your visit, as per published government guidelines).
    • Once you have packed, and cleaned your room, leave any rubbish inside your room, securely bagged and tied.
    • Limited storage is available for international students only. If you are packing for a friend who is abroad, please phone the Lodge when you are ready to place labelled (with the owner’s name) boxes in storage and the Porter will direct you to the storage area. Up to 3 boxes may be stored.
    • Please leave any library books (ours and any from other CU libraries) in the lodge collection boxes*
    • Ask the Porter to check your pigeonhole and the parcels register.
    • Collect your bicycle if you are taking it with you (you may leave it locked on site, we are not doing a bike cull this summer).
    • Return the hoover if you borrowed one and leave it as directed by the Porter.
    • Return your key (and your unicard if you are a finalist) at the Lodge and check out.
    • Once you have checked out, you must not re-enter the building.
    • If you are packing and collecting on behalf of another person, as well as yourself, you may collect both keys at the same time if both rooms are in the same flat/corridor, otherwise please do one at a time and follow the Porters’ instructed route to the second room. Please note that you are responsible for your friend’s possessions once removed from the room and they will not be the responsibility of College.
    • Foodstuffs: All perishable items, opened packets and items past their ‘sell buy date’ have been disposed of. Please do not leave usable items behind in the kitchens, donate these to a foodbank if you cannot use them yourself.

    To protect the College’s staff and resident students, published government social distancing rules will apply at all times. Students collecting their belongings are expected to:

    • Limit the number of ‘helpers’ to one person per student.
    • Bring food and drink provisions with you, and eat outside please or in your car, and don’t interact with staff more than necessary.
    • Use the WC designated for visitors* and wash your hands both on arrival and as you leave.
    • Depart promptly – the next person can’t come in to site until you have left. If you wish to have a last look around the gardens and take photos etc please do this after you have handed your keys in to avoid delaying the next person on the list.
    • If you are unable to come to Cambridge and have difficulty with options 2-6 on the list above, or the end deadline then please contact the Accommodation Manager.
    • If you are a finalist and still have your room key and unicard at home please arrange for these to be posted back to College by June 30th.  Replacement key charges apply after this.
    • Books etc. for any library (College, faculty/department, UL) can be posted to the UL, who will then return them to the appropriate library.