PPE Society has been forced to apologize to its members after some were denied entry to an event they had been promised ‘guaranteed entry’ to.
John McCain was speaking at the Oxford Union in conjunction with the PPE Society.
Queues reportedly stretched back onto Cornmarket Street and some PPE Society members who arrived later in the evening were turned away, much to their surprise.
One second year, who choose to remain anonymous, said, ‘The only reason I became a member of PPE society was to gain entry to this event. I cannot describe how distraught I am about not being able to see such an eminent statesman. A once in a lifetime opprtunity has been lost.’
An email from PPE Society President, Evan Lum, apologized profusely for the debacle. The email explained, “In short, a grave miscommunication with the Union denied you the priority spaces we had told you were yours […] explanations are good, but they aren’t the same thing as an apology, and you deserve one of those as well: we’re sorry.’
On the Facebook page of the PPE Society, it was claimed that members could visit the wesbite ‘to to register your place.’
It continued, ‘Anyone can become a member within minutes, and can then put their name down for guaranteed entry to the event – no worrying about whether you have a place or not.’
This, however, was not what the Union understood, as they had thought that PPE Society wanted 150 guaranteed places in the queue, not ‘guaranteed entry’. Both parties blamed unfortunate miscommunication, rather than each other, for the confusion.
Lum’s email went on, “there was a disjunct between what the PPE Society committee thought the Union had promised society members (150 seats) and what the Union were in fact willing to offer on the ground (150 places in the main queue)”. He ended his email asking those who thought they had a place but were denied to come forward and email him, “so that we can both get a sense of the scale of the mistake and work out a solution”.
There was no written contract between the societies for the event, and this is thought to have contributed to the mix up.
Union President John Lee said it would have been unfair for his Union members if 150 PPE Society members had arrived just before the event and been able to go in ahead of those who had queued for far longer. He explained that the standard policy at the Union was “first come first served”.
Many members signed up to PPE Society at freshers’ fair in order to see Senator McCain. Lum explained, ‘We’re sorry that you, our members, missed out on entry to one of the four keynote speakers of this term, and probably the one many of you wanted to see most. There’s no getting away from that fact, and we don’t intend to.’