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How do I join a club or society?

Where does the money from my membership go?

What should I expect as a member?

Once I’ve joined, what do I do next?

Do I need previous experience?

How big a commitment is joining?

When and where do they meet?

Can I get a refund if I don’t like it?

About the Student Activities reception

Who can use the student activities centre?

Can alumni/UCL staff/students from other unis join?

Question not answered here? Email us on su.activities-reception@ucl.ac.uk


How do I join a club or society?

The Clubs and Societies Centre, found on the 2nd floor of the Bloomsbury Building, sells memberships throughout the year. However, it’s often quicker and easier to buy your membership online. If you cannot buy memberships online please come to see staff at the Bloomsbury Building Reception, or the Lewis Building Reception which has recently opened to offer the same services.

If you are under 18 years of age please visit either Reception to purchase your membership as you will not be able to purchase it online. Please ensure you have a parental permission form  filled in before you visit us.

If you are not a UCL Student and meet our eligibility criteria (see application form), you can join a club or society by becoming a member of UCL Union.  You can find out everything you’ll need to know about this here.

Where does the money I pay for membership go?

It goes directly to the Club or Society that you join and contributes towards your chosen club/society’s activities. The amount you pay is set by the club/society treasurer each year and varies depending on the levels of activity they provide.

What should I expect as a member?

Every club and society is different but as a minimum each must provide its members with at least two events, such as sports fixtures, meetings, parties or lectures, per term. Most provide much more than this. You can find out more about what each Club or Society has to offer by checking the What’s on Calendar, or looking at their Club or Society page on the Directory.

Once I’ve joined, what should I do next?

  • The club or society should contact you via email. If they don’t, get in touch with them via Facebook, email or attend a meeting. The Reception can provide a contact email for the club or society.
  • Get involved in the club/society, turn up to their events and make sure you are getting your money’s worth
  • Hold the committee to account, make sure they are running your club or society in a clear and transparent way and are keeping you informed about what’s going on
  • Ask for reports and feedback on the finances – it’s your money, find out how it’s being spent.

Do I need previous experience to join?

The short answer is no. Everyone is welcome to join any Club or Society, no matter what your experience. Most sports clubs have trainers or coaches to help members of all abilities and levels. Some people will go along just for training, others so that they can compete. 

How much commitment do I need to put in?

How often you go is completely up to you, as you are the one paying for the membership. All societies meet at least once a week, normally the same day, same time and same location. However sports clubs may need more dedication, as they are competitive and have teams which play matches, although going just to train is often fine (check before you join). 

When and where do groups meet? 

Most clubs and societies meet at least once a week for training, rehearsals or their regular meeting, but they all set their own times. There are a few ways to find out when they meet:

  • Go to the Welcome Fair and meet the existing members of the club.
  • Go to the group’s page on the A-Z directory, which should direct you to their website or Facebook group, which will have all the information you’ll need about their meetings or contact details if you still have questions.
  • Ring up or visit the Students Activities reception – they should be able to tell you which societies are using our facilities for meetings, and they can also find out when and where sports clubs are meeting/training. 

If it’s not the right fit for me, can I get a refund?

Everyone who joins a club or society is entitled to a refund, with no questions asked, up to 30 days after the purchase date. So if you join a club or society, or too many, and decide that it’s just not for you, you can come to the Student Activities Reception to request a refund from us. If you have bought your membership online you can request a refund by getting in touch with us.

If it’s more than 30 days after purchase we only grant refunds on a case by case basis, and it must be approved by the President or Treasurer of the Club or Society. For example, if you joined a sports club, and 4 months later you have an injury that prevents you from playing the sport anymore, the President or Treasurer can authorise the refund of membership.

What is the Student Activities Reception?

The reception is your first point of call for all club and society enquiries. We have two Receptions that are open Monday to Friday, with Bloomsbury Reception also open on Saturdays.

2nd Floor Bloomsbury Theatre & Lewis Building Reception
su.activities-reception@ucl.ac.uk 
0207 679 723

Opening hours

Bloomsbury Reception, 2nd Floor:
Monday - Friday: 10am - 9pm
Saturday 11am - 7pm

Lewis’ Reception:
Monday to Friday: 10am - 5pm

These hours are term time only. Out of term, the reception is closed.

Can anyone use the Student Activities Centre?

Yes, we are open to all UCL students and the common room is available to everyone. The computers in the common room, however, are for club and society use only. 

Can UCL alumni/students at another university/UCL staff join a club or society?

Yes! Higher Education students from outside of the university, as well as UCL staff and UCL Alumni, are just some of the parties eligible to apply for Associate/Visiting Membership. All you need to do is go to Visiting and Associate Membership page for more information and an application form.

An academic year’s membership is £25 or you can also purchase three months’ membership for £15 and you will then have to pay the club’s membership fee on top of that.