By RICHARD HARTLEY-PARKINSON
The morning after: Walking seems to have got too much for the girl in the red dress, while the chap on the right seems to be feeling a little warm after a night of partying
They've finished their exams, they're about to venture into the big wide world, and they've just spent hundreds on the hottest night in town.
So no wonder it all proved a bit too much for some Cambridge University students, staggering home after partying all night to celebrate the end of term.
Even at £200 for a couple, and on top of the cost of a new ball gown and tails, revellers at the Trinity May Ball were far from reserved - perhaps savouring their final carefree days of student life.
Bleary-eyed after a night of partying, as the sun rose the youngsters carried on the celebration with drunken punt rides on the River Cam or breakfast in college gardens.
Relaxed: As the sun rose, students who had paced themselves continued to drink bubbly as the sun rose
The ball is a tradition dating back 145 years that is among the largest events in the Cambridge student social calendar and is as famous for the morning after events as the big night itself.
After dinner and dancing the night of official events was brought to a close with a spectacular fireworks display, but for some it was a sign that the night was still young.
The morning after the night before: These students look like they're up for continuing for some time with two bottles of Pimms
One guest said: 'The champagne was flowing, but if you want to be among the survivors the next day, you learn to pace yourself.'
The Trinity May Ball is normally held on the first Monday of May Week - the traditional end of term at Cambridge University.
This year, however, it took place in June and is one of a series of balls taking place across the campus.
The ball has continued every year since 1866 and has only had two breaks. Once in 1910 when King Edward VII died and again during the Second World War from 1939 to 1945.
Class, style and some high jinx: One couple looks like they've stepped out of a Dickens novel as they make their way home while another share a laugh with friends
The only trouble that was reported in the town was three calls from residents who complained to Cambridge City Council over excess noise.
Robert Osbourn, the council's environmental protection team leader, told the Cambridge News that some complaints were inevitable.
He said: 'You are never going to be able to guarantee that nobody hears anything.'
The students also do their bit for charity. With 17 balls and major events being held in Cambridge this academic year, the total funds from all college May Balls is likely to reach tens of thousands of pounds.
Having a punt: These party goers decide to have a more leisurely ride along the River Cam with cups of coffee
Home time: Students file out of the Trinity May Ball in an orderly manner
Friendships made: Students lie on the lawns in front of King's College as the sun rises over the spires of Cambridge
Glamour: A group of women look as splendid as they did the night before as they set off home in their ball gowns
It's a busy day for punters in Cambridge with hundreds of students to transport along the Cam
Wednesday, 22 June 2011
By RICHARD HARTLEY-PARKINSON