First and Third Trinity Boat Club May Ball
The First and Third Trinity Boat Club May Ball, informally known as Trinity May Ball, is an end-of-year party held annually during the month of June at Trinity College, University of Cambridge. It is notable as the first May Ball ever held in Cambridge. It originates from a celebration of the First and Third Trinity Boat Club, after which the Ball is named, for their win in the 1838 May Bumps: this consisted in a night of heavy drinking at a local pub, the Hoop Inn. Since the bumps were originally held just before the university exams in May, the name still remains traditionally even if the ball has been moved to the subsequent month, on the Monday of May week. The first official May Ball in Trinity College's grounds was actually held in 1866, and the tradition rapidly spread to the other colleges. The event takes place every year since then, but it was cancelled in 1910 due to King Edward VII's death and between 1939 and 1945 during the Second World War.
The ball's dress code is white tie preferred but black tie accepted and the event usually lasts from 9 o'clock in the evening to 6 o'clock in the morning, ending with a Survivor's photo. Highlights of the occasion include champagne being served all night long from an ice-filled punt, oysters and a fireworks display.
Over the years, Trinity May Ball has hosted performances of several famous acts including:
- Elvis Costello and The Attractions
- Pixie Lott and the Vengaboys (2012)
- Cascada (2011)
- Alphabeat and Wheatus (2010)
The Ball has also generated some controversy as students often spend a large amount of money to attend what has been called by some tabloid newspapers as "an excuse to get recklesly drunk" and allegedly misbehave on the streets of Cambridge once the event finishes in the early morning.[unreliable source?]
- "Trinity May Ball - A brief history". First and Third Trinity Boat Club May Ball. Archived from the original on 2013-09-05. Retrieved 15 July 2012.
- "St. Catharine's College May Ball, 1929" (PDF). St Catharine's College, Cambridge. Retrieved 15 July 2012.[permanent dead link]
- "Cambridge students enjoy oysters, hog roast and champagne at Trinity Ball". The Daily Telegraph. 19 June 2012. Retrieved 15 July 2012.
- "Drink". First and Third Trinity Boat Club May Ball. Archived from the original on 2013-09-05. Retrieved 15 July 2012.
- "John's and Trinity Announce May Ball Line Ups". Varsity. 14 June 2012. Retrieved 15 July 2012.
- "Cascada to headline Trinity May Ball". Varsity. 2 June 2011. Retrieved 15 July 2012.
- "Toff their heads! Cambridge students pass out on pavements and stagger about in top hats and ball gowns after £215 ball". Daily Mail. 19 June 2012. Retrieved 15 July 2012.
- "Trinity May Ball". 2018. Retrieved 8 March 2018. (official web site)