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Change is inevitable in life: Summer gives way to Autumn; large, unstable nuclei decay; and heads of physics societies move on and nominate their successor. Unsurprisingly, it is the latter that I’ll be discussing here.

Rory Whelan, the previous head of G.U.T.S (Grand Unified Theorist Society), has successfully completed his PhD (congratulations!) and ownership of the society has fallen to me, James Pallister, a second year PhD student in the Theory Department. In his time leading the group Rory achieved a lot and put on some truly memorable events such as: a pub trip. And…err…another pub trip. Oh, and also another pub trip but to a slightly different pub than the first time.  

Ok, look, I’m going to level with you, this society is mainly about going to the pub. It’s a place for staff, postgrads and undergrads alike to sit down and talk. About anything. It doesn’t have to be physics related or even, god forbid, theoretical physics but it can be if you want. This semester I even managed to organise one such pub trip myself. 40 of us – consisting of physics lecturers, PhDs and a large student cohort marched down to the Selly Park Tavern for a few hours and enjoyed a drink (non-alcoholic or alcoholic) and a chat. Topics ranged from the obscurest areas of physics to who would win in a fight, Einstein or Feynman? (Spoiler, its Feynman). Everyone thoroughly enjoyed themselves and I intend to put on a lot more trips in the New Year. 

In the spirit of change, I have made the decision to rename our society. We are now Theoretical Physics at the University of Birmingham Society, or The.P.U.B for short! Our old name was good, but it didn’t quite reflect our values: curiosity, introspection and having a drink of whatever with your favourite physics lecturers. 


For those interested in joining, please feel free to reach out to me via email: I hope to see many of you in the New Year for more great times.


James Pallister
Head of the Theoretical Physics at the University of Birmingham Society
Aka The. P.U.B. 

To find out more about The.P.U.B visit their society website.

There are 41 student groups in the College of Engineering and Physical Sciences. To learn more about their projects and activities head to the EPS Societies homepage.