Following reports a few weeks ago that the controversial sport of jelly-wrestling might be returning to the University of Cambridge, it has been announced that the past time will remain banned.
Until 2013, the Gentleman Wyverns, an all-male drinking society at Magdalene College Cambridge, celebrated the end of exams with a spot of spectator sport – jelly-wrestling. An event involving bikini-clad female students grappling for cash in a paddling pool filled with jelly, jelly-wrestling was branded sexist by many students and so was banned two years ago following a 1100 signature petition.
“These societies are endemic at Cambridge, and ridicule and berate women.“
– Organiser of the 1100 signature petition.
Jelly-wrestling was meant to be returning this year after a two year break. To fight the fears of sexism, the society claimed they would also invite male students to take part.
However, the return of jelly-wrestling at the University of Cambridge was not to be.
Dr Rowan Williams, ex-Archbishop of Canterbury and current master of Magdalene College, home of the Wyverns, cancelled this year’s bout of jelly-wrestling amid further cries of sexism. Had the master not stepped in, the event was due to take place last week as part of end of exams celebrations.
Dr Rowan Williams, Master of Magdalene College at the University of Cambridge
“The pressure came from the Master and the fellows of the college. It’s frowned upon that we get a bad name because of this drinking society.”
The sport first hit the headlines in 2008 when a losing participant was arrested for attacking a spectator and two security guards. It seems the controversy surrounding the Gentleman Wyverns at Magdalene College continues.