Alternative Workplaces: Outdoor Edition

Freya Sanders 11 May 2014

Easter term may mean exams for many, but at least it’s likely to yield a slight increase in temperatures. In light of that, perhaps it’s time to eschew the spots mentioned in last term’s guide to ‘Alternative Workplaces’, gather up your textbooks and embrace the great outdoors. After all, they say fresh air does wonders for the brain cells…

Coldham’s Common

Jesus Green may be more central, but anyone holing up there to work will find themselves besieged with Ultimate Frisbee players and startled by the bellows of coxes issuing from bordering boathouses. Moreover, the patch of land, like the rest of us, is unlikely to have entirely recovered from wanton debauchery of C-Sunday; it will therefore be haunted by stagnating vomit and shameful memories for the remainder of the term.

Instead, brave a venture past the freaky cows of Coe Fen (although take a selfie with them first #TCSbucketlist) and head for the peace and quiet of Coldham’s Common.


Proceed with caution                                                                                                                Credit: Rachel Kramer

Granchester Meadows

Unless it’s May Week, this classic punting destination is pretty much guaranteed to be devoid of students. Head down with a flask of tea and a chunky textbook, find a spot on the grass that’s out of the way, and appreciate the fact that the only distractions are the spiritually uplifting sounds of nature. Until the next punt full of tourists comes along, that is.


The perfect spot for a picnic… but maybe not one as elaborate as this                                                Credit: Rowena

St. John’s College playing fields

There are actually some good things about John’s. The playing fields is one of them. This vast expanse of land is a testament to the college’s enormous wealth; but it’s open to all. Though it’s squeezed between three of the busiest roads in Cambridge – Queen’s, Madingley and Grange – you only have to walk ten metres beyond the gate to feel as if you’ve utterly escaped the city. The tranquillity, the white-clad cricket players, the perfectly trimmed lawn: it’s like the grounds of a country manor, really. Except the imposing silhouette of the UL looms overhead as a helpful reminder of impending exams/doom.


So Cambridge yah                                                                                                                  Credit: Barry Skeates

So that's it, for now. Usually we would give you a list of 5, or 7, or 11, or 21. But it's exam term and well, degree…


Don't let this be you.                                                                                                                        Credit: CGP Grey

Got any better ideas? Send us a tweet #AlternativeWorkplaces