After two of the students escaped and were able to call the police, they were told to “file a report online”Keira Quirk

Content note: this article contains discussion of homophobia and violence

Police did not come when called to the scene of a suspected homophobic attack against four Wolfson students.

The assault, which resulted in one student being hospitalised, occurred in Market Square in the early hours of Wednesday morning (23/2) after the students had attended Glitterbomb, Cambridge’s only weekly LGBTQ+ club night.

After two of the students escaped and were able to call the police, they were told to “file a report online”. A spokesperson for the Cambridgeshire Constabulary said that they believed those assaulted were “already safe”, although the victims told Varsity that the attack was still “ongoing” at the time.

The police spokesperson confirmed to Varsity that they are “investigating assaults … which are alleged to have taken place between 1am and 3.15am on 23 February in Market Street and Market Passage, Cambridge” including “exploring CCTV opportunities.”

They continued: “The assaults had ended by the time they were reported, and the victims were no longer in danger…the suspects had left the scene”.


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Student hospitalised after suspected homophobic attack

After the assault, the victims also tried to get help to call a taxi home from St. Catharine’s College porters’ lodge.The students say they were in “obvious distress”, outside the college, visibly injured and with one student having lost their glasses. St Catharine’s told Varsity that a porter was unavailable to help the students because he was on a comfort break.

After getting home to Wolfson, students submitted a police report online and were told that they will be provided with rape alarms.

The victims believe the attack was “targeted”. One student, when asked about whether he would return to Glitterbomb the following week, said that it wasn’t his responsibility to feel like a martyr: “I didn’t get socked in the face for a cause, I got socked in the face because I was just standing there, being gay.”

He continued: "I’m coming out of shock now. I felt a lot of anxiety yesterday and I still feel that a bit. I think when I go back to the market square it’s going to hit me more."

Cambridge SU LGBT+ Campaign released a statement on the assault, signposting resources for those who have been “affected in any way by the incident and would like someone to talk to”. The campaign wrote that they were “shocked and saddened to hear of the incident” and extended their “support and solidarity to the victims.

Ella Hawes contributed reporting.