Brit student pub-crawls come under fire over booze-induced mayhem

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London, November 8 (ANI): A firm that arranges drinking events for students in the UK may face a ban after an undergraduate urinated on a war memorial during an event organised by the organisation.

Student unions are seeking to put a lid on Carnage UK that organises parties for an estimated 350,000 undergraduates in 45 towns and cities every year.

"The expectation of a bar crawl is that everyone will have at least one drink in each bar on the route," the Observer quoted 19-year-old Jo, who attended an event in the north of England last year, as saying.

"But because there are up to 2,000 people on the same route at the same time, there is a massive crush at every venue, which leads to people mass purchasing drinks so they don't have to queue again.

"Carnage might not explicitly encourage binge-drinking but the impact of these factors is inevitable. It is pretty much what the name of the organisation promises," Jo added.

The outrage comes after 19-year-old Philip Laing was left facing a jail sentence following a seven-hour drinking binge organised by Carnage after which he relieved himself on a wreath of poppies at a war memorial.

He told District Judge Anthony Browne in Sheffield that he had been "the drunkest I have ever been at uni" and did not remember any of his actions on the night of the incident.

While the judge slammed Laing for his "disgusting and reprehensible" act, he also held Carnage partially responsible.

Richard Budden, vice-president of the National Union of Students (NUS) said: "There is an acute and real danger to students who get caught up with these nights, not to mention the danger to members of the local population, and the harm done to town and gown community relationships.

"An increasing number of campuses want to see the end of these events and are doing all they can to stop them by prohibiting ticket sales and banning all publicity.

"They take students on pub crawls that degrade the participants, put students' welfare at risk and lead to antisocial behaviour. They make their money and then disappear, leaving student unions, police, and sometimes even the hospitals to pick up the pieces."

But Varsity Leisure Group, owner of Carnage UK, denied the claims of encouraging irresponsible drinking.

A spokesman said: "This is completely untrue. Student unions do not like Carnage UK events because they clearly compete with their own, less well-resourced events."

On its website, the company stated: "At the forefront of our mindset is student safety." It cites measures such as free soft drinks at all venues and on-site medical services." (ANI)

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