Magdalen refuses chicken rep

first_imgMagdalen JCR has been thwarted in its attempts to bring in a chicken rep to look after its College fowl. The motion had proposed to allocate £290 towards the upkeep of Magdalen’s chickens, out of concern for the creatures since students have taken to smuggling them into College property. It had been proposed by Josh Rhodes in response to the actions of three students, who had taken the hens onto College property to hide them, but were discovered when one fell off the roof. The students, Matthew Shribman, Henry Waite and Hugh Simpson smuggled the hens onto a roof of a building that they had secret access to and took turns to look after them. However, the porters decided to confiscate them after the Dean of Arts was alerted to their presence. Simpson said that he decided to take the chickens under his wing because, “It would be quite nice to have pets of some form, and people had complained about the College’s use of battery farmed eggs. The idea was to respond to both issues by getting pets that would provide us with delicious free-range eggs.” However the Dean of Arts, Rob Gilbert, allowed the chickens to stay and Simpson praised the actions of the College. He said, “The College responded pretty well to discovering that the chickens were on the roof. “Both the Junior and Senior Deans seemed quite enamoured with the chickens, and seemed impressed with the effort that had been required to put the chickens up there in the first place. To their credit, they did try and make it work – but the run which was built to house them after the chickens were moved off our roof was only suitable as a temporary structure.” Many students had hoped that Sunday’s motion would be the first step in establishing a permanent infrastructure allowing the hens to become a feature of Magdalen College. However as the Dean of Arts has reported, “It became clear from an early stage in the process that the ongoing commitment of the student body in general to maintenance of hens within the College was critical to the development of a workable long-term plan… the JCR felt unable to make such a commitment.” The chickens have been found a new home outside Oxford and will be moved this week.last_img