Inside a chilly, six-bedroom Dunedin student flat video

James Gunn

Three Otago University students invited us around to their place to talk about Scarfie life in 2017

Stuff's Dunedin reporter, Hamish McNeilly, returned to his old student neighbourhood with a box of Speight's under his arm for the One in Five Million project.

In Dunedin's student quarter, back in the day, the infamous Castle St was crowned by the Gardies bar.

It's a study centre now but the two-storeyed pub used to arc around the corner onto Brook St, which quickly becomes Leith St.

Almost everyone who lives on Leith St is a student. It's a five-minute walk to the closest lecture theatres.

Among them, Tom Caughley, 19, Henry Sullivan, 19, and Sam Chandler, 20 are on their balcony reading the quiz questions off the bottom of Speight's caps.

The trio, who are studying law and commerce, are half of a six-bedroom flat of five young men and a woman.

The flatmates weren't all immediately comfortable with the student lifestyle.
HAMISH McNEILLY/STUFF

The flatmates weren't all immediately comfortable with the student lifestyle.

They each pay $145 a week in rent, including internet, and $30 each towards flat food. Caughley says that leaves him with $70 a week to cover bills, personal food, and beer.

Their Leith St flat has only been visited by authorities once, when a noise control contractor warned them over loud music during a party. The flatmates simply turned their large speakers to face a different direction. Problem solved.

But from those parties the flat sports several holes in the ceilings and walls, which reveals a complete lack of insulation.

One in Five Million
Find out where you fit in NZ
Supported by
No information you enter is saved or reused by Stuff. All questions are optional
FUN
Free time
Do you have too much, not enough, or the right amount of free time?
Recreation
How often do you take part in sport or recreation?
Arts events
How many arts events did you attend in the last 12 months?
CALCULATE
RESULTS
Free time
Too much
The right amount
Not enough
50%
40%
30%
20%
10%
0%
% OF PEOPLE
Recreation
5-7 days a week
3-4 days a week
1-2 days a week
Every 2 weeks or less
40%
30%
20%
10%
0%
% OF PEOPLE
Arts events
0-3
4-10
10 or more
40%
30%
20%
10%
0%
% OF PEOPLE

"That's our ventilation system," Sullivan explains.

Ad Feedback

And so how do they heat the place?

"We don't is the answer," Caughley says.

Your flatting horror stories

Share your stories, photos and videos.

"It is very chilly when you wake up."

Their power company offers an hour of free power at off-peak times, which means at 9pm the heat pump is turned on to 30 degrees and the dryer and dishwasher are cranked up.

"I think you'll be hard pressed to find a boys' flat that puts their heat pumps on," Caughley says.

The flatmates aren't at home much during the day, and at night often head to the library to keep warm, and study of course.

Flat rules include chipping in an extra dollar if anyone uses a heater or dryer outside the allotted free power slot, and if you cook, you clean.

The boys all take part in flat cooking days, but not their female flatmate, as "we eat lots of carbs and meat ... and she doesn't eat carbs and is pretty healthy," Chandler says.

Their respective specialities are chicken katsu with peanut sauce and rice (Caughley), roast lamb or beef sourced from his Southland farm (Sullivan), and nachos ("my childhood fantasy" - Chandler).

They say they could all cook before coming to Dunedin and were stunned when one of their flatmates asked "how do you know when water is boiling?".

"That was a bit of a red flag," Chandler says.

The unnamed flatmate has now mastered a range of mince-based dishes, including nachos, spaghetti bolognaise, tacos, burritos - "the list is endless", Caughley says.

The three aren't too worried about their student loans - they're all confident of getting jobs that could eventually clear their debts, which after five years of study may reach six figures.

Sullivan says future debt was not a consideration when choosing what he wanted to study - "we will worry about the loan later".

They weren't always so comfortable with the student lifestyle.

Chandler, who came from Wellington in search of "a better time", admits to finding his few days "a big culture-shock". That included loads of young people drinking on the streets and "broken glass everywhere".

Caughley: "I had no idea what was going on".

Last year, as first-year students (or "freshers") the group met at a hall of residence.

They were at the Six60 concert on Castle St when a balcony collapsed, injuring 18 people.

Chandler says he understands why authorities want to end antisocial behaviour like couch burning and bottle smashing. But he says he was "outraged" by plans to roll out more CCTV cameras in the area. (He's not sure why students seemed relatively apathetic on the issue, only narrowly opposing the move in a referendum run by the Otago University Students Association.)

 - Stuff

Comments

Ad Feedback
special offers
Auckland

'Business as usual' soon video

Tanker HMNZS Endeavour is back on standby because of Auckland's ground fuel re-supply efforts, Judith Collins said.

Energy Minister Judith Collins says Auckland airport's fuel crisis is coming to end.

Connecting through memories

Year 5 Albany Primary School pupil Yash Arora, 10, said the game was fun for residents and students.

Albany Primary pupils are taking part in a programme to form connections with older adults with dementia.

Te Papa to go fully solar

The Age
News
04/04/2013
picture Justin McManus.
Hoppers Crossing has the highest number of Solar Panel instillation in ...

Wellington museum plans to power itself entirely by sunlight within a decade.

Waiting for help

Ten per cent of children between 0 and 19 are made to wait more than two months for mental health support across New ...

One in 10 young people in NZ seeking mental health help will be on a waiting list for more than two months.

Wellington

Parties for the nearly departed video

Ken Turner and partner Sarah Angus.
Ken has terminal cancer and held a "living wake" for family and friends last weekend.

"Living wakes" have become a final festivity of life in the face of death.

Fire victim's protest

A cordon was put up outside Parliament after the man set himself alight.

Man who died after setting himself alight had been in dispute with Family Court.

Road projects hit Kāpiti housing

John and Julianne O'Kane watch their former family home in Paraparaumu being carted off to make way for the expressway ...

Market not delivering what community needs, taskforce tells council.

How the sevens were lost

In total, less than 18,000 spectators attended the Wellington Sevens across both days - the stadium's capacity is 32,500.

Organisers were in losing battle for an event Wellington had fallen out of love with, emails show.

Canterbury

New shops and foodcourt planned

A new foodcourt and seating areas for diners will be added at the southern end of Northlands mall.

Christchurch's Northlands Mall is planning to embark on another extension.

Fire coms broke down

Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel says more regular updates were needed from the Selwyn District Council during ...

Selwyn council didn't update Chch mayor's office for nearly eight hours during Port Hills fires.

No charges over fatal crash

Christchurch man Bruce Imrie says it is a "big relief" not to be charged over the crash that killed his wife.

Tough five months for man who "blanked out" moments before a crash that killed his wife.

Upset at noisy basketball court video

The court is about 30 metres from the nearest property.

A Christchurch woman claims the constant thumping of basketballs from a nearby half-court is turning her into a wreck.

Waikato

Footbridge a priority

A footbridge across the Waikato River could connect central Hamilton to Parana Park and Memorial Park. Pictured is an ...

There's a push for more work on plans for a pedestrian bridge to link central Hamilton and Parana Park.

Tyre pile warning

Waikato Regional Councillor Kathy White said used tyres need to be made a priority under the Waste Minimisation Act.

Industry insiders say they're shocked at a tyre stockpile growing by "thousands" each day.

Mack cheats death, again video

Sharla Pearce was terrified her dog would die after falling down a Waikato River bank. Fire rescue came and rescued Mack ...

After surviving death row, a "goofball" pooch found himself in another spot of trouble.

Killer highway's $6m salve

Two people were killed on SH3 between 2005 and 2014.

Rumble strips, side barriers and intersection improvements on the way for SH3.

Taranaki

Unlocking dementia's secrets video

11092017 News Photo ANDY JACKSON/STUFF.  The Ticking Timebomb, a series looking at the rising issues of alzheimers ...

Dementia has a terrible effect on many Kiwi lives, and the situation will get worse. 

Sir Richard's award

Sir Richard Faull holds up his "second brain", as he explained to the students at New Plymouth Boys' High that they were ...

"If you're a plumber, be the best plumber in the world, if you're a jet pilot, be the best jet pilot in the world."

Armed cops in street

Firefighters don hazmat suits at the scene on Turakina St.

Officers who entered a suspected clandestine lab have been put through a decontamination shower.

Justice 'not being seen'

A Taranaki lawyer claims his legally blind client's access to justice is under threat because the man can't get his ...

Lawyer argues legally blind client's "access to justice" at risk because no-one is helping him to get new glasses.

Manawatu

Welcome to town: Colyton video

Dairy cows and cattle make up a good portion of the Colyton population.

The small settlement isn't a dream destination for tourists, but it keeps good time.

Teachers investigated

One teacher has been struck off and two others are under investigation after behaving inappropriately towards students. ...

One teacher struck off and two others investigated for inappropriate relationships with students.

Turbos surge late to beat Northland

Manawatū's Newton Tudreu races in for his intercept try in the first half.

Manawatū Turbos turn on a strong finish to beat Northland 39-25.

Right but wrong

Horowhenua District Council chief executive David Clapperton refuses to acknowledge any wrongdoing over his email snooping.

OPINION: Horowhenua council officials refuse to admit fault - then change their snooping practices.

Nelson

Makos legend back in the fold

Robbie Malneek last played for the Tasman Makos during the 2015 Mitre 10 Cup season.

Robbie Malneek, the only player to reach 100 caps for the Tasman Makos, has been handed an unlikely recall.

Car-free summer

Kerry and Garry Ford of Ford's restaurant and bar in upper Trafalgar Street, which will become a pedestrian zone over ...

The top of Nelson's Trafalgar St is going to be traffic free for four months this summer.

New SHAs approved

12072017 NEWS PHOTO MARTIN DERUYTER/ STUFF

The former Green Grocer Store on the corner of Grove St and Tasman St in The ...

Seven new SHAs approved by the Nelson City Council including a tiny house project.

Bugged by litter bugs

Ali Lawley and her son Charlie Calderbank, aged 10, on Franklyn St next to Nelson College.

Braemar Eco village residents want littering outside Nelson College to stop

Marlborough

Environment judge called in

Leachate run-off and ponding from grape marc dump sites in Marlborough. (File pic)

A prominent winemaker and a new company he is linked to - dubbed the "complete solution" to grape marc - are to be dealt with by the Environment Court.

'Stupid thing to do'

Blenheim District Court.

A man has admitted shooting out a window at the health hub in the central business district.

Leap in rateable values

New capital values across Marlborough show a big increase for Picton properties. (File pic)

Some properties have seen their capital value incease by a whopping 28 per cent.

Whale carcass washes ashore gallery video

A blue whale carcass washed ashore at Glenburn Station in Wairarapa on Wednesday.

A blue whale suspected to be the same one spotted dead in the water near d'Urville Island has washed ashore.

South Canterbury

Hydro 'dangerous'

Timaru's Hydro Grand Hotel has been assessed as being a dangerous building likely to cause injury or death.

Damning report says Hydro Grand is dangerous, likely to cause injury or death.

Time to spring forward

Butcher Jim Bower's early mornings will be even darker and busier when Daylight Saving kicks in on Sunday.

Dust off the barbecue, it's time for long evenings as Daylight Savings starts.

Gully change approved

An aerial view of Broughs Gully, in the Timaru suburb of Oceanview.

The Brough's Gully site could yield at least 180 sections if the decision survives appeal.

Timaru's next tourism attraction?

In May a High Court Judge ruled the Rangatira be sold to pay off more than $170,000 owed to PrimePort.

Fisherman hopes community will save ship with Hollywood connection from the scrap heap.

Otago

Woman rescued, police thank app

A Christchurch woman was found on Ben Lomond, near Queenstown, about 12am on Friday.

A Christchurch woman was rescued from a Queenstown mountain after her husband tracked her location through a phone app.

Eyes to the sky in Alexandra

Neil Sutherland, who lives at the Alexandra Airport at his hanger, will be displaying his home-built plane at the Wings ...

It's not every day planes down the main street of Alexandra.

Budding booze baron busted

Richard Gray in the Dunedin District Court

A Dunedin man says he feels better after he was busted for selling home brew to two teens who later ended up in hospital.

Six-figure golden handshake

Aurora Energy boss Grady Cameron's exit package means he will make nearly $1 million in a year.

Otago lines company boss's 'excessive' exit package means he'll make nearly $1m this year.

Southland

Prendergast wants dialogue before ministerial review

John Prendergast, former chief executive of the Community Trust of Southland.

"An independent set of eyes transparently reviewing and reporting publicly on this matter would be very beneficial ..."

Where is Amber-Lee?

Amber-Lee Cruickshank, pictured age one, went missing on October 17, 1992.

Police travelled to Australia looking for answers about what happened to toddler Amber-Lee Cruickshank 25 years ago.

Fighting for those who can't

Southland Boys's High School student  Malachi Agnew, 12, in front, has organised students at his school to have a mufti ...

When Malachi Agnew is rasing money he's trying to save the lives of his mates.

Ballet etiquette 101

I've seen Romeo and Juliet, I don't need the story narrated to me.

OPINION: I love a trip to the ballet but not when the person behind me can't stop talking.

Ad Feedback