The Best Student Life. Bristol SU

Start a new group

Football in a grassy field

Start Something New

I want to start a club or society, what should I do?

All you need is an idea and 30 people willing to join your group. Just follow the steps below:

  1. Research the currently affiliated groups, checking that they aren't already covering your proposed aims and activities. If in doubt, contact the group to explain your idea and see if they are OK with it, and let us know if this is the case on your application. 
  2. Read the New Group Guidance and the Bristol SU Code of Conduct - this will help you to understand what is expected when running a student group. 
  3. Collect your membership list - you'll need the name, student number and email address of 30 people who would like to join your group.
  4. Write a constitution - make sure you your aims are clearly laid out and that the committee positions are clearly defined. Groups need a minimum of a President, Secretary and Treasurer.  Please use our sample constitution.
  5. Complete the Student Group Affiliation Form  and email the constitution and members list to  
  6. Attend New Groups Guidance training (you will be contacted to confirm this). 

KEY DATES: Please note that your request will be considered at the next scheduled Societies Network meeting. Please submit your form and documents at least seven days ahead of the meeting and make a note of the timeline below. 

These documents will then go to the Societies Network who will decide whether or not to recognise your society. The Societies Network may ask you to attend this meeting to answer questions about your proposed society.

Affiliation submission deadline: 6th April 2018
Societies' Network meeting: 16th April 2018
Committee response expected by: 20th April 2018
New Groups Guidance training (compulsory): 25th April, 2-4pm


Under what criteria will the decision be made?

  • Originality - If an existing group already offers the same experience as the one you are proposing, then the application will be rejected. Student groups require a lot of administrative support and we cannot have two groups doing the same thing.

  • Long-term sustainability - You need to have thought through what your group will do if affiliated: What events will you put on? How will you make money? Once you have left University, will the group be able to carry on? The more prepared you are, the more likely we are to affiliate the group.Students playing basketball

  • Community Benefit - As stated by Byelaw 9.4 ‘Clubs and Societies must be expressly set up with the intention of advancing education for the public benefit, as defined by Charity Law’. To what extent do your aims (set out in the constitution) fulfil this function?

  • Inclusivity - How will you respect and promote the Bristol SU values of equality, diversity and inclusivity? What actions will you take to make sure your activity is accessible?

  • Passion - We want student group leaders that are genuinely passionate about something and can inspire others to do it with them.

If the Societies Network approves your new club or society then there's lots of support available to help your new group to go from strength to strength.