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Strength to Strength: 1981 - 1993

23 October 2019

In the early 1980s, Reggie was finally wed. The ceremony took place in the Nelson Mandela Hall, now Tutu’s. The young bride blushed under her veil, Reggie looked dapper in a grey top hat. Then… nothing. Mrs Lion disappeared and has not been seen since. Was she the victim of a kidnap plot, or did she elope with Beaver, the LSE mascot? King’s kidnapped LSE Beaver in 1982.


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King’s vs Imperial

In 1991, Imperial kept their four mascots locked up, making them impossible to steal. This was clearly in breach of the rules of Mascotry. To provoke them, King’s students travelled to South Kensington and painted one of the two stone lions which guard Imperial’s Queen’s Tower bright red. More importantly, another target was spotted behind the Old Union Bar in Imperial’s Beit Quad. On a plaque on a shelf, amongst a clutter of other trophies and memorabilia, was Reggie’s most vital anatomical feature… Graeme, a King’s Mascoteer, takes up the story:

‘The honour of our mascot was at stake. In spite of his recent re-paint and temporary tackle, Reggie had to have his old bits back. After all, you can’t win a battle firing blanks! Over 30 enthusiastic (or was that drunk?) King’s students headed off by tube to South Kensington. The Imperial bar filled up quickly, much to the surprise of the bar staff. One of the King’s leaders walked slowly up to the bar: ‘Half a pint of Coke, and that trophy up there please’, he said, pointing at the mounted organ on the shelf. ‘What? No, you can’t have that!’ cried the bemused barman.

‘I suggest you give it to us or we’ll take it anyway,’ replied the leader. At that point, several people climbed over the bar, and with a shout of ‘King’s!’ the trophy was removed.’

Jeremy loses his head


One of the more bizarre sights of UCL is the mummified body of Jeremy Bentham, a founder of UCL and the University of London.

In 1989, King’s students ‘liberated’ the real head of Mr Bentham and took it back to the Strand. Legend has it that they played football with it as they headed back to College down Kingsway, resulting in severe damage and a formal complaint from UCL. Dark threats of expulsions and fines were uttered, but as far as we know the brave perpetrators remained beyond the long reach of UCL’s Provost.

In 1990, King’s stole Jeremy’s wax head, after the real one had been locked in the UCL safe. This drew very strong protest from UCL, who refused to have anything more to do with Mascotry, and they remain in such a state even today.

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