St Andrews found itself on a desert island last week,
Professor Louise Richardson, former St Andrews University principal and now the first female vice-chancellor of Oxford University, was on the Radio 4 show Desert Island Discs, on which guests have to choose eight ‘discs’ they would want with them on a desert island.
Her first choice was ‘St Andrews Girls’ by the university’s a cappella group The Other Guys, who had performed it at her farewell party.
She said she had been better prepared for Oxford after the pitfalls she experienced because of her gender at St Andrews.
Asked about the former men-only policy of the R&A Golf club, which prevented her from joining as previous principals had, she said: “It didn’t bother me personally that I couldn’t join these particular men and have lunch with them but it bothered me that women who wanted to be members of the oldest and most prestigious golf club in the world could not be.”
Reports that she had been mocked by members had been exaggerated she said, adding it had been “individual members waving their ties in just this puerile way that boys sometimes do.”
‘St Andrews Girls’ raised £1000 for Breast Cancer Care when it was released in 2012.
A parody of Katy Perry’s ‘Californian Girls’, it has lyrics such as “Never been happier in all my life since the day that I moved to Fife”, describes St Andrews as “where the grass is really greener” and says “You can travel the world, but nothing comes close to the east Fife coast”.
You can hear Professor Richardson at the Desert Island Discs section at www.bbc.co.uk.