The University of Kent has a long standing rivalry with its neigbour Canterbury Christ Church University.
Noisy Neighbours filmEdit
The video to the right is a good way to explore the rivalry, albeit from a slightly bias viewpoint. The film covers views of the rivalry and varsity from both sides.
Examples of the rivalryEdit
The rivalry between the students is mostly a tame affair with few cases of it going too far. However the rivalry seems based upon the perceived difference between the student bodies; with Kent students being seen as a privileged, middle-class and somewhat snobby group, that primarily stay on their campus or 'up on the hill', with little use of the city itself. On the other hand, Christ Church students are stereotyped by their lower ranking on university league tables and their origin as a teaching college that only recently became a certified university. Many of the jokes in this case are to do with their coursework being colouring in books and spelling mistakes on signs or in books being from Christ Church graduates. Due to the nature of Kent having a full campus and Christ Church being located more in town many venues found in the city are seen as Christ Church places; the most notable example of this is the Jolly Sailor, there is often slight trouble or 'banter' when Kent students attend Christ Church events such as wednesdays in Club Chemistry.
Perhaps helping to perpetuate the rivalry is the yearly week long sporting event, Varsity, where the many sports teams of the two universities compete with often large and vocal crowds supporting their respective teams. The first ever Canterbury Varsity match took place at Canterbury Rugby Club in February 1999, Men’s Rugby 1st XV.
Since Varsity's growth to include the majority of sports, UKC now holds one every year using sports facilities at both campuses. Sports that compete in Varsity include; Volleyball, Badminton, Cycling, basketball, Netball, Football, Rugby, Hockey, Tennis, Swimming, Equestrian, Snow Sports, Trampolining, Lacrosse, Cricket and a variety of others. As of 2015, UKC has won the Varsity 17 years consecutively, winning the most recent Varsity (2015) 13:21 to Kent.
The official view of the Student Unions (as seen in the letter) is that varsity is an enjoyable event but swearing, pranks and general bad behaviour are not acceptable.
There is a third university in Canterbury the University of Creative Arts that has a campus not far from that of Christ Church. However, due to the low number of students it is often forgotten or ignored by the students of the other universities.