Cherwell understands that a sign belonging to St. Catherine’s College has been stolen, allegedly as a reprisal for the college’s football defeat over the combined Keble/Hertford team in February’s women’s cuppers football final.
Although there is no confirmation from the thieves, who remain unidentified, it is widely believed that the sign was stolen in order to “avenge the loss in cuppers”.
One poster on Oxfess, who claimed to speak on behalf of “all of St. Catherine’s college”, told the thieves: “If you have a moral bone in your body, may we suggest you bring back the sign to its original location.”
They alleged that the college may have to “pay for a replacement” and hinted at further conflict: “threatening violence over a wooden sign to those trying to get it back is not bravery, it’s stupidity and cowardice.”
Since this was posted by the website, the signpost, which had been taken to Hertford’s JCR, has now been returned by two members of the college’s student executive committee.
In a Facebook post updating Hertford students on the situation, they stated: “Please don’t steal massive signs, and if you desperately feel the need, please return them.” They added that the sign was “so heavy” that they were helped to carry it by some “associate professors”.
The signpost in question gives directions to the college’s JCR, the Library, and the Bernard Sunley Building.
The St Catherine’s team beat the combined Hertford/Keble team (known as ‘Hertble’) in the final, held at Iffley on 15 February. The final score was 4-1.
The captain of the Hertford team, Eleanor Frew, told Cherwell:
“Hertble don’t take any responsibility for stealing this sign and would appreciate any future accusations to come in person rather than via a Cherwell article or oxfess.
Perhaps now it has been returned, we can get back to celebrating women’s sport instead of worrying about a sign.”
The St Catherine’s captain declined to make a statement.