Thursday, 1 October 2009

Mike Bailey of AVS has died

I'm obviously a bit slow with this particular bit of news from the Surrey alumni news obituaries section:

"Mr Mike Bailey (Retired Manager of Audio-Visual Services), April 29, 2009. Mike is remembered for his good natured and willing attitude and as an active member of the Wates House Committee in the early 90s."

A generation of OFU staff and committee members will remember Mike as the examiner for the Projectionists' Licence, the little yellow laminated cards that were issued up until 2001 and which authorised use of OFU's Fumeo and AVS's slide projectors and portable 16mm projectors. At the time I suspect we hassled Mike into doing the tests as though it were somehow our right to be let loose on university-owned equipment; in retrospect he must surely have been giving up his own time, willingly and regularly, in order to support us.

Thursday, 13 August 2009

An arts cinema for Guildford?

There's quite a bit of momentum - online, at least - behind plans for a new arts cinema in Guildford, within the shell of Guildford's first cinema, West's Picture House, latterly a bookshop and furniture store. The Facebook group has over 600 members, which isn't at all bad.

However, there doesn't appear to be much, if any, support from the local authority, according to the local rag.

Thursday, 23 April 2009

You wait years for a filmsoc, and then two come along at once

Despite The Shadowrooms apparently having state-of-the-art digital projection, 3D films and a nice comfortable theatre (these kids today, they don't know they're born) - USSU is apparently running a second film society called Front Row.

As is now de rigueur, there's next to no information on USSU's website but it's all organised via Facebook instead. The Shadowrooms does the exact same thing.

Of course, as any ex-OFU committee member will tell you, having two competing groups is a recipe for society vs. union fights and meaningless quibbles over the differences between a "society" and an "amenity". Or was that just us?

Tsk. Back when I were a lad it were fields as far as the eye could see; you watched films by all crowding around a flick-book. (Well, near enough.)

Thursday, 26 March 2009 OFU's home since 1999

The domain name that points to this blog ( has been in use by OFU on and off since 1999. It originally pointed to the actual OFU website [now archived here]. Following the demise of SSC it lapsed briefly, until 2005, when we re-acquired it to point to this blog. (2005 also saw an unexpected flurry of other OFU-related activity, including the launch of our anthology DVD.)

Why bring this up now? Several reasons. The OFU "community" has been quietly dwindling away for some time, as the relative silence on this site and our Facebook group attest. I am currently consulting with ex-OFU techies over the value of our domain name, in historical, emotional, practical and financial terms. If you'd like to contribute your thoughts, get in touch.