Deans across Oxford have been especially frosty in the past week after numerous students have committed offences of walking on snowy quads.
The Magdalen Home Bursar, Mr Mark Blandford-Baker, felt it necessary to emphasise that “lawns are off limits at this time of the year and the arrival of snow does not change that.”
The email, which was sent to all undergraduates and postgraduates of the college, also highlighted that “someone has even been careless enough to trample through a flowerbed last night.”
A second-year from Magdalen said: “It seems to me a little too Scrooge of the college to get so tied up about this. The message probably didn’t do much good anyway because we were all too busy building giant snow penises to be checking our emails.”
The note did, however, end with the threat: “Please stay off the lawns – infringements will attract fines or community service work.
“If you wish to play in the snow please stick to Bat Willow Meadow or the lawn behind the Waynflete Building. Stay out of the Water Meadow.”
Meanwhile, notices appeared around Keble titled: “Reminder: Do Not Walk on the Grass!”
The note continued: “Following the snowfall, someone defaced the quads with puerile obscenities. The Deans would be grateful for any information leading to their identification.”
The confessed purveyor of the “puerile obscenities”, who requested anonymity, seemed anxious to abdicate all sense of responsibility:
“It was the ghost of John Keble. It is a well known fact that he had a phallic obsession. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.”
John Keble was unavailable to reply to this accusation.