I was sent the link to this website by a couple of friends I went to KEGS with, years ago now. All three of us girls joined in the sixth form – new school, we knew no one. We met in art class and we do have great memories of art trips away to Paris and Barcelona. And all three of us agreed that at the time we felt uncomfortable but it’s only when you look back you realise how disgusting and humiliating the culture was.
I’ve read a number of the testimonies already submitted and it makes for truly upsetting reading. And yet at the time, it was all fine because it was passed off as “banter”. Being rated by your looks – banter. Your supposed relationships and sexual acts being openly discussed in the common room – banter. Receiving an award, that you had to go up and collect in front of the entire sixth form – for being a slut – banter. Being voted the most likely to become a housewife – banter.
All of it was called banter and it was okay because it was funny? No? And if you didn’t find it funny then there was something wrong with you. You didn’t get it because you just joined in the sixth form, you’re an outsider. You have to fit in with the boys or you’ll remain an outsider for your entire time there.
So no, it’s not banter. And it’s not funny. And I think I speak on behalf of a lot of the girls in my year, certainly we three – it took years to rebuild the confidence that cocky Kegs boys saw fit to destroy. I hasten to add not all Kegs boys are the same, we all met a number who were genuinely lovely people – but they were firmly the exception to the rule.