Cambridge students defy Covid rules for boozy 'Caesarian Sunday'

Thousands of Cambridge students defy Covid rules for booze fuelled ‘Caesarian Sunday’ as they celebrate start of summer term by funnelling wine, urinating in bushes and drinking until they are sick

  • Cambridge University students gathered in their thousands on Jesus Green, Cambridge, for annual tradition
  • Eight-decade old event is seen as ‘the final blowout’ on bank holiday before they take exams in summer term
  • Students went ahead despite it going against the Covid restrictions which ban large outdoor gatherings
  • It has been criticised and faced ban threats in the past years for causing antisocial behaviour and littering

Thousands of students turned up at a park for an annual drinking event – with some seen urinating up trees and others vomiting.

The booze-fuelled ‘Caesarian Sunday’ event shouldn’t have happened on Jesus Green in Cambridge because of Covid restrictions – but crowds gathered anyway.

Witnesses said there was chaos as students lit barbecues, ignored social distancing rules and drank until they were sick.

The event is at least eight decades old and usually takes place on the Sunday of the first May bank Holiday weekend.

In the past, the gathering has been criticised for causing havoc, with masses of litter left lying around and people becoming ill from the amount they have drunk.

Pictures taken on Sunday show thousands of students stood and sat in groups on the green, with men urinating into waterways and up against trees while the grass was strewn with plastic bottles and beer cans.

Cambridge University students descended on Jesus green in Cambridge for Caesarian Sunday

This eight-decade old tradition which sees students party for the last time before exams begin

Event went ahead despite Covid-19 restrictions which ban outdoor gatherings of more than six

Witnesses estimated that up to 3,000 students gathered on the green this Bank Holiday

Several police officers can be seen talking to people in the crowds, but one witness said not enough had been done to move people on.

Current restrictions ban outdoor meet-ups of more than six people or two households.

One witness said the event was ‘like a rave’ with loud music blaring out and drunken people dancing.

Another said: ‘Police were doing absolutely nothing to move people on. It was a joke.

‘There were lots of men and women urinating by the trees on the path in front of passing public.

‘Young women were vomiting from too much drink. I spoke to two police officers who said as you can imagine we can’t exactly get involved.

Cambridge University students drinking on Jesus Green as part of Caesarean Sunday

Event has been criticised historically due to amount of litter left over and antisocial behaviour

People letting their hair down at the Caesarean Sunday in on Jesus Green in Cambridge

Council bosses have threatened to cancel the event in the past due to problems it causes

‘At the peak maybe 3,000 people there and there were no masks and no social distancing.’

The event – which often attracts undergraduates in fancy dress – has previously been criticised due to the antisocial behaviour associated with it.

Named after the university’s Caesarean drinking society, the event used to see the Caesareans descending on Jesus Green to have a brawl with the Girton Green Monsters – one of Cambridge University’s most notorious drinking societies.

The brawl was officially banned about seven years ago but the event lives on and has hit headlines in recent years for the students’ antics. 

In 2016, a student dressed up as a sheep suffered severe burns after his fancy dress costume was set on fire, reportedly as part of a drinking society ‘initiation’.

He threw himself into the river to extinguish the flames before an air ambulance rushed him to hospital.

Event was named after Jesus College’s Caesarean drinking society who would brawl with the Girton Green Monsters society

Students often don fancy dress to attend the event which has taken place in Cambridge for the best part of eight decades

While the event used to see students fight each other in the name of tradition, this was banned about seven years ago

Cambridge University students descended on Jesus Green in Cambridge for Caesarian Sunday yesterday afternoon

Students enjoy a drink on Jesus Green in Cambridge as part of the annual Caesarian Sunday party to mark the start of summer

City council leader Lewis Herbert has since threatened to ban the event, which is seen by some students as a final blowout before the summer exam season.

Attending in 2017, he said: ‘From being there Sunday afternoon, it is clear that the spirit was good this year and the vast majority of the large crowd of partying students were behaving sensibly.

‘Students should be able to regulate their behaviour as a group, assisted by Cambridge University and colleges reinforcing expectations, and the local police team there just in case.

‘While welcoming that most antisocial behaviour seems to have been avoided, there is still a significant clean-up cost every year and revellers need to better consider other users of Jesus Green.

‘We also want to thank in advance our cleansing teams who will now follow up to ensure that Jesus Green is spick and span and recovers as soon as possible.’

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