University College London Union (UCLU), founded in 1893, has a credible claim to be England's oldest students' union. It was formed with the following objectives: "the promotion of social intercourse and of the means of recreation, physical and mental, of the students of University College, and the financial successes of students' clubs". UCL Union was the first of its kind as it was formed for both athletics clubs and social activities alike.
Since its formation, the Union has taken on responsibility for many aspects of student life. Events for example were seen as a key element hence the establishment of an Ents Committee. A student magazine known as the Gazette was formed a few years later and the Somers Town sports venue was also acquired.
UCL Union is affiliated to the National Union of Students.
== Organisation ==
UCL Union runs over 200 clubs and societies for its members. It runs commercial services including 3 bars, 4 cafés, two shops and a fitness centre. UCL students, through the Union have nine weeks free access to put on student shows and events in the UCL-owned professionally run Bloomsbury Theatre.
The Union's sports clubs have access to several different venues including Astor College Gym, Bloomsbury Fitness, the Somers Town Sports Centre and the Shenley Sports grounds, which Watford Football Club rent for training purposes. Arsenal F. C. rented it as training grounds until 1998. In 1999 they opened the purpose built Arsenal Training Centre on a neighbouring 143 acres. On the other side is the de Havilland Aircraft Heritage Centre.〔(【引用サイトリンク】title=The UCL Sports Ground )〕
UCLU provides support to students through Jobshop and the Rights & Advice Centre, and has a highly active Volunteering Services Unit, providing volunteering opportunities for over 1400 students a year.
As well as the magazine "Pi", the Union's media output includes the radio station Rare FM, the "alternative" magazine The Cheese Grater and a number of smaller publications.
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