Daniel and Michael masquerading as toriesFamke Veenstra-Ashmore

After not being invited to any cool parties, the only logical solution to your Saturday night social abyss is to go to Cambridge University Conservative Association’s Port and Policy evening, Cambridge’s premiere concentration of chronically eligible bachelors.

It’s an evening that promises lively debate and unlimited port for the low, low price of £11. We did at first baulk at spending a hard-earned £11 at CUCA, instead of on a half-pint at The Eagle, but we soon learnt it is apparently a mere drop in the ocean for the average CUCA member, with one speaker later in the evening calling people who earn less than £80,000 a year low class.

We made the decision to reschedule our original Saturday evening plans as soon as we first saw the exciting debates that CUCA’s esteemed committee had lined up for us. The prospect of hearing some of Cambridge’s most respected future GB News pundits debating the return of capital punishment and expanding UK gun rights was an opportunity that simply could not be missed.

Walking into the event, we immediately realised we were horrendously under-dressed. We put on our red chinos and quarter-zips in an attempt to fit in, but this conformity was swept away as soon as we saw a number of CUCA boys who were donning their finest dinner jackets, bow-ties, and dress shirts. There was a twist however, their smart top half wasn’t matched with normal trousers and loafers. Instead they made the rogue decision of wearing a pair of shorts. It was then that we discovered this wasn’t just any normal Port and Policy, it was Shorts and Policy - say what you want about CUCA, but at least they know how to dress.

“I can’t wait until this guy is chancellor of the Exchequer”

After making awkward small talk with Cambridge’s brightest and best Tories, we were thrilled to see that the association had jokes! Well, one joke as their comedy started and ended with a statement about being asked what their pronouns are — but at least they found it funny.

Like seemingly every other political society, CUCA hold their Port & Policy at Little St Mary'sDaniel Hilton

The evening then began with a rigorous debate on raising MPs’ pay. The more cynical amongst you may think such a debate is fruitless in a room full of future Tory backbenchers with significant conflicts of interest. Regardless, the debate was nevertheless an intellectually demanding experience with as diverse arguments as “who would want a government full of McKinsey consultants?” and “I would like a government full of McKinsey consultants”.

After a brief break (to refill port glasses and continue networking) the debate moved on to the big one: “This House would bring back hanging”. Looking like Paddington Bear’s Tory cousin, the first speaker triumphantly rose ready to bless the world with his groundbreaking thesis that the only way to stop criminals coming into your homes and killing you in your sleep was to hang them. He even cited that the government balances the budget by simply buying a £10 rope on Amazon instead of keeping criminals in prison for life sentences. I can’t wait until this guy is chancellor of the Exchequer.

Throughout the evening we were continually reminded that arguments are made at CUCA with tongues firmly in cheeks. Student speakers do not want to be associated with comments they make in such an environment fuelled by alcohol and loathing, for fear they may U-turn in their future and decide that, in fact, hanging should not be brought back to be used on Scottish nationalists, republican protesters and Union hacks.

Following the lively debate on whether or not the state should kill people, we were gifted with yet another break and meandered around the room trying to find a refill of what was described as the cheapest port they could get their hands on. Among the tweed blazers and bow ties, there were a number of illustrious CULC and CULA members. Who would have guessed that Cambridge’s favourite socialists would happily spend £11 to be in a room emblematic of everything they hate while minimally challenging the speakers. Perhaps they too were on Tory safari.

Glad to see that we weren’t the only ones who came to Port and Policy as a night out, we returned to our seats and got ready to enjoy the final debate on gun rights in the UK. By this point, the novelty of seeing bespeckled bachelors stand up and speak to a room of people whose political opinions started and ended with calling something ‘based’ or ‘cringe’ started to wane and so we turned to drinking as a coping mechanism.


Mountain View

Coffee, cake, and conversation with Michael Wells

Unfortunately, as I reached for my port glass I realised that it, like my dreams, was shattered by a very apologetic CompSci. To his credit, he was absolutely lovely about it and didn’t hesitate to jog over to the bar to get me another drink. At that moment I think I became the first person in history to have his heart warmed by a CompSci.

The debate itself was frankly quite dull with relatively uninspiring speeches and awful chat, but its saving grace was seeing the effect that industrial amounts of port had on the room with words becoming increasingly slurred and gaits becoming less civilised than their public schools had taught them.

Overall then the night was disappointing, with the novelty of seeing CUCA boys as caricatures of themselves waning exponentially as the evening progressed. My perception of CUCA was then shattered — these people aren’t Jacob Rees-Mogg and future political heavy-weights, they’re simply people who want to express outdated views while wearing black tie. Maybe we should have just gone to Northern Soc instead.

When approached for comment, CUCA's Chairman said: "As a society we will never shy away from difficult topics, we aim to make Port and Policy an enjoyable event for all with both serious and satirical debate. At every event many students from across the political spectrum join us and enjoy themselves, but don't just take my word for it we'd love to welcome even more people to our next Port and Policy on the 7th of March at St Paul's Church."

Undercover with Hilton and Hennessey will return...