12 April 2018

Heriot-Watt revisited

For my birthday this year I decided to indulge in a bit of nostalgia by visiting my old university, Heriot-Watt University on the outskirts of Edinburgh. I'd only been on campus once since graduating in 1995 (that was when I finished my MSc in Human Computer Interation, just in case any of my BSc Chemistry classmates are reading this and thinking I've got my dates wrong!), and that was 15 years ago to the day, when I was there for a meal in the evening, so I didn't see much of the place that time.
Considering that I'd spent a whole year travelling all the way there from Glenrothes each day, it's bizarre that I've then spent decades thinking of it as somewhere that would take a lot of effort to visit! All I needed to do was catch the train at Markinch first thing in the morning, as I used to do, then get off the train at Haymarket after a 40 minute journey, and hop straight on a bus for another 40 minute journey.
The campus itself was my home for 3 of the years that I was at uni, so it was very strange to see how it looks now that the halls of residence and campus flats I lived in have been demolished. It really opens up the area around the loch.
I was really surprised to hear that they are thinking of demolishing what I think of as the "new" students' union building, which opened when I was in second year. Before that we would go drinking in what was known as the TU (Temporary Union), which was little more than a hut!
I really enjoyed walking round the buildings and campus, and even though I spent more than half a day there I didn't see everything I wanted, so I will definitely be going back. I loved seeing the new things, like some of the new sculptures around campus, and the places I felt particularly nostalgic about like the sunken garden and the green doors of the Computer Centre.

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