In the light of the Browne report and the CSR it is clear that universities are going to be asking their customers to hand over more of the paper stuff before they are allowed to step through the hallowed portals. Of course this is only fair. However I concede that some tyro scholars will be inconvenienced and will not have the ready cash available nor possess a convenient stash of family silver that can be pawned to tide them over. Of course universities must do all they can to help those in this position even if the root cause of their distressing state is the improvidence of their parents who instead of becoming teachers, social workers and care-assistants should have known that investment banking and stockbroking was a securer career choice.
Be that as it may the solution is obvious. At our elite universities there are many fine upstanding young men and women from good families and schools who are used to having things done for them and have the wherewithal to pay for it. Likewise there is a pool of impoverished tykes clamouring at the door but without the obvious means to pay for anything. In the spirit of enterprise (so sadly lacking in our institutions of higher learning) we should let the market produce the solution. Universities should immediately create employment agencies through which more affluent students can hire the services of their less fortunate colleagues. There is no shortage of honest and useful work that can be done, beds to be made, houses to be cleaned, letters to be delivered, meals to be cooked and no suggestion that such arrangements should be put to immoral purposes. If the term was not already appropriated I would suggest that FAGS might be a good name for the new "servant" class. Charges for services rendered could be added automatically to termly battels and offset against the servant's university fees. This would have the added advantage that no actual cash would change hands thus removing all temptation of the servant spending it on frivolity and frippery.
I remain Sir your most obedient servant,
Major-General Bufton-Tufton (rtrd.)