Stay in touch!
Sign up to be updated with Evolve's latest stories, and for opportunities to get involved.
Students at the Cambridge University Conservative Association allegedly joked about a fellow student, Ronald Coyne (pictured), burning a £20 note in front of a freezing homeless man earlier this year by saying “it should have been £50”.
Coyne, who was the subject of national scorn earlier this year, was caught on video goading the homeless on the streets of Cambridge and burning a £20 note in front of rough sleeper Ryan Davies. It has been widely reported that Ronald Coyne is also a member of the Cambridge University Conservative Association (CUCA).
Immediately after the shocking act, a petition to expel Coyne from Cambridge University gained national momentum, while a fundraiser from EvolvePolitics raised over £4,500 for Jimmy’s Shelter in Cambridge.
Student newspaper The Tab has revealed a secret recording of a CUCA event shortly after the vile incident took place. Coyne’s actions were on the agenda, and the recording reportedly shows one Tory student shouting “it should have been a £50 note”, followed by 11 seconds of “raucous laughter” from the entire room.
The Tab claim that this audio recording was from a Q&A session with Conservative MP for Havant, Alan Mak. Mak was asked what the worst part of Ronald Coyne’s behaviour was – leading to the obnoxious outburst from the baying Cambridge Tories. In response, Alan Mak MP said:
“Following a question from the audience, I quickly condemned Ronald Coyne’s actions. I believe his behaviour was totally inappropriate and not representative of the Conservative Party, CUCA or Cambridge University.”
What Alan Mak MP neglects in his statement is that this heckle actually disproves his theory. While it was posited that Coyne’s actions were not representative of Cambridge Conservatives at the time of the event, the fact that they are making light of such a despicable act shows that they are living in a different world to the rest of us. It proves that Coyne’s actions are representative of the Cambridge University Conservative Association, who funnily enough, declined to comment in response to this story.
A spokesman for the University of Cambridge said:
“The dinner was a private event therefore it would be inappropriate for us to comment.”
When questioned about an update on Ronald Coyne’s disciplinary proceedings for the initial act, the spokesman said:
“This incident has been referred to the University’s disciplinary process. We cannot comment further while this process is underway.”
Looking after your own, guys?
Your subscriptions go directly into paying our writers a standard fee for every article they produce. So if you want to help us stay truly independent, please think about subscribing. We literally couldn’t function without the support of our fantastic readers.Subscribe
Or a One-Off Donation to Evolve Politics
If you don’t want to subscribe, but still want to contribute to our project, you can make a one-off donation via the donate button below. All your donations go directly to our writers for their work in exposing injustice, inequality and unfairness.Donate