World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Hughes Hall, Cambridge

Colleges of the University of Cambridge

Hughes Hall

Hughes Hall and the University Cricket Pitch
Full name Elizabeth Phillips Hughes Hall Company
Named after Elizabeth Phillips Hughes
Established 1885
Previously named Cambridge Training College for Women Teachers
President Anthony Freeling
Undergraduates 60
Graduates 500
Sister college Linacre College, Oxford
Location Mortimer Road
Hughes Hall heraldic shield
Disce ut Servias
(Latin, "Learn in order to serve")
College website
MCR website
Boat Club website

Hughes Hall is a constituent college of the University of Cambridge in Cambridge, England. It is often informally called Hughes, and is the oldest of the four Cambridge colleges which admit only mature students. The majority of Hughes Hall students are postgraduate, although nearly one-fifth of the student population comprises individuals aged 21 and above who are studying undergraduate degree courses at the University.

Hughes Hall was founded in the 19th century with the purpose of providing a college of the University dedicated to training women graduates for the teaching profession. Since then it has enlarged and expanded to support a community of students and researchers, both male and female, working in all the academic domains encompassed by the University of Cambridge.

The college is housed in a number of 19th and 20th century buildings at a main site immediately adjacent to the University of Cambridge's Cricket ground, and between the City Centre and the railway station.


  • History 1
  • College Site 2
    • Buildings 2.1
    • Location 2.2
      • Transport Links 2.2.1
  • Student life 3
    • Societies and Sports 3.1
      • Music 3.1.1
      • Boat Club 3.1.2
    • May Ball 3.2
  • Lectures 4
  • Notable members 5
    • Principals/Presidents 5.1
      • Principals 5.1.1
      • Presidents 5.1.2
    • Fellows 5.2
    • Alumni 5.3
    • Honorary Fellows 5.4
  • Gallery 6
  • References 7
  • Further reading 8
  • External links 9


In 1878 the University of Cambridge established a Teachers' Training Syndicate to develop a training curriculum in education for students of the University intending to become teachers. Hughes Hall was established in 1885 as a college for women graduate students taking the Teacher Training curriculum. Key amongst its early supporters and founders were Rev. G.F. Browne, fellow of St Catharine's College, Miss Frances Buss, headmistress of the North London Collegiate School, Miss Anne Clough, first principal of Newnham College, and Professor James Ward, fellow of Trinity College.[1]

Margaret Wileman Building, Hughes Hall

The college was initially founded as the Cambridge Training College for Women, and it began with 14 students in a small house in Newnham called Crofton Cottage. The first principal was a graduate of Newnham College, Elizabeth Phillips Hughes (1851-1925), who was in post from 1885 to 1899. In 1895, the college moved to a distinguished purpose-built building, designed by architect William Fawcett, overlooking Fenner's Cricket Ground - which continues to be the main college building to this day. One of the first matriculants, Molly Thomas, recounted the experience of the first class of students in A London Girl of the 1880s, published under her married name, M.V. Hughes.

Following recognition of full membership of the University for women in 1947, the college formally became a recognized institution of the University in 1949 and was renamed Hughes Hall in honour of its first principal. The college became an approved foundation of the University in 1985, and received a Royal Charter marking its full college status in 2006.[2]

The college's first male students arrived in 1973, making Hughes Hall the first of the all-female college's to admit men, and from that time students began to study a wider range of affiliated post-graduate degrees.[3] Student numbers gradually increased in the 1980s and 1990s. Today, Hughes Hall has about 500 graduate students and around 90 undergraduates, all students are "mature" (aged over 21), and the college accommodates study in the wide range of studies taught in the University. The college is one of the most international Cambridge colleges, with its students representing over 60 nationalities.

College Site


Entrance and Fenner's, Hughes Hall

The college's main building, known as the Wileman Building, was designed by architect William Fawcett and built in 1895. It was opened by

  • Hughes Hall website
  • College MCR website

External links

  • Margaret Bottrall, Hughes Hall 1885-1985 (Cambridge, 1985).
  • M.V. Hughes, A London Girl of the 1880s (Oxford, 1936).
  • Ged Martin, Hughes Hall Cambridge 1885-2010 (Third Millennium Publishing, 2011).

Histories of the College were written in its Centenary in 1985, and the 125th anniversary of its foundation in 2010:

Further reading

  1. ^ Martin, Ged (2011). Hughes Hall Cambridge 1885-2010. London: Third Millennium Publishing Limited and Hughes Hall.  
  2. ^ Varsity on Hughes Hall achieving full college status
  3. ^ Martin, Ged (2011). Hughes Hall Cambridge 1885-2010. London: Third Millennium Publishing Limited and Hughes Hall. p. 146.  
  4. ^ Kamm, Josephine (2012) [1958]. How Different From Us: A Biography of Miss Buss and Miss Beale. Abingdon: Routledge. 
  5. ^ Mill Road Conservation Appraisal (PDF). Cambridge City Council. June 2011. p. 22. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  6. ^ "Hughes Hall - History of Hughes Hall". 
  7. ^ Mill Road Area Conservation Area Appraisal (PDF). Cambridge City Council. June 2011. p. 27. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  8. ^ "Hughes Hall - History of Hughes Hall". 
  9. ^ "Hughes Hall - History of Hughes Hall". 
  11. ^ "Hughes Hall plans graduate accommodation block next to Fenner's Cricket Ground in Cambridge". Cambridge News. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  12. ^ "Hughes Hall - History of Hughes Hall". 
  13. ^ "Punt". Hughes Hall MCR. Retrieved 5 July 2015. 
  14. ^ "Music at Hughes Hall". 
  15. ^ "Lectures and Talks". Hughes Hall. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  16. ^ "Lectures and Talks". Hughes Hall. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  17. ^ "Lectures and Talks". Hughes Hall. Retrieved 13 June 2015. 
  18. ^ "Cambridge University - Department of Pathology - Professor Nabeel Affara". 
  19. ^ "Hughes Hall - Nabeel Affara". 
  20. ^ "University of Cambridge - Judge Business School - Professor Michael Barrett". 
  21. ^ "Hughes Hall - Professor Michael Barrett". 
  22. ^ "Hughes Hall - Mary Buckley". 
  23. ^ "Cambridge University - Department of Psychology - Professor Anthony Dickinson". 
  24. ^ "Hughes Hall - Professor Tony Dickinson". 
  25. ^ "Cambridge University - Department of Pathology - Professor Ming-Qing Du". 
  26. ^ "Hughes Hall - Professor Ming-Qing Du". 
  27. ^ "Hughes Hall - Ian Hodge". 
  28. ^ "University of Cambridge - Department of Pathology - Professor Jim Kaufman". 
  29. ^ "Hughes Hall - James Kaufman". 
  30. ^ "Cambridge University - Centre for Science and Policy - Professor William Nuttall". 
  31. ^ "Hughes Hall - Professor Jonathan Powell". 
  32. ^ "MRC - Human Nutrition Research - Prof Jonathan Powell". 
  33. ^ "University of Cambridge - Faculty of Education - Kenneth Ruthven". 
  34. ^ "Hughes Hall - Gordon Smith". 
  35. ^ "Cambridge University - Department of Obsetrics and Gynaecology - Professor Gordon Smith". 
  36. ^ "University of Cambridge - Faculty of Law - Professor Marc Weller". 
  37. ^ "Hughes Hall - Marc Weller". 
  38. ^ "Hughes Hall - Nigel Brown". 
  39. ^ "Hughes Hall - John Dingle". 
  40. ^ "Hughes Hall - Terence English". 
  41. ^ "Hughes Hall - Hermann Hauser". 
  42. ^ "Hughes Hall - John Hopkins". 
  43. ^ "Hughes Hall - Cleo Laine". 
  44. ^ "Hughes Hall - Peter Mansfield". 
  45. ^ "Hughes Hall - Janet Smith". 
  46. ^ "Evan Wallach resume". 
  47. ^ "Evan Wallach". 



Honorary Fellows

Name Birth Death Career
Gilberto Arias 1960 Former Ambassador of Panama to the United Kingdom
Annette Brooke 1947 Former Liberal Democrats MP for Mid Dorset and North Poole
Michael Gau Vice Chairman of Aviation Safety Council of the Republic of China
Michael Heron 1962 Solicitor-General of New Zealand
Theo Hobson 1972 British theologian and writer
Anne Hollinghurst 1964 Bishop of Aston, appointed as Birmingham’s first female Bishop
Johnny Hon 1971 Hong Kong born international businessman and founder of the Global Group
Damian Hopley 1970 England rugby player
Ian Lambert 1960 Principal of The Scots College
Alan Leong 1958 Member of the Hong Kong Legislative Council and Leader of the Civic Party
Liam Mooney 1972 Entrepreneur, Dubai
Paula Marcela Moreno Zapata 1978 Minister of Culture, Colombia; Hubert H. Humphrey Fellow, MIT
Andrew Murrison 1961 Conservative Party MP for Westbury and former Minister of State for Northern Ireland
Shane O'Mara 1982 American rower who represented the United States in sculling events in three World Rowing Championships and in two 2007 World Rowing Cup events.
Eric Peters 1969 Scotland rugby player
Tom Ransley 1985 GB Rower, World Champion and Olympic Bronze Medalist
Andy Ripley 1947 2010 England rugby player
Roxana Saberi 1977 American journalist for Al Jazeera America and former Miss North Dakota pageant winner. Held prisoner in Iran's Evin Prison for 101 days under accusations of espionage.
Gábor Scheiring 1981 Economist and Member of the Hungarian National Assembly
Chris Sheasby 1966 Former England international rugby union player, now turned commentator and coach.
Netta Syrett 1865 1943 English writer of the late Victorian period
Tony Underwood 1969 England rugby player
Alison Uttley 1884 1976 British author of over 100 books. Best known for her children's series about Little Grey Rabbit, and Sam Pig.
Daniel Vickerman 1979 Australian professional rugby union footballer who played for the Wallabies at the 2011 Rugby World Cup.
Evan Wallach 1949 Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, former judge of the United States Court of International Trade, and one of the foremost experts of the United States on war crimes and the law of war.


  • Nabeel Affara, University of Cambridge Professor of Molecular Genetics and Genomics[18][19]
  • Michael Barrett, University of Cambridge Professor of Information Systems & Innovation Studies[20][21]
  • Mary Buckley, former Professor of Politics at Royal Holloway, University of London[22]
  • Anthony Dickinson, University of Cambridge Professor of Comparative Psychology, Fellow of the Royal Society[23][24]
  • Ming-Qing Du, University of Cambridge Professor of Oncological Pathology[25][26]
  • Ian Hodge, University of Cambridge Professor of Rural Economy[27]
  • Nevin Hughes-Jones, haematologist, Fellow of the Royal Society
  • Jim Kaufman, Professor of Comparative Immunogenetics at the University of Cambridge[28][29]
  • Neil Mercer, Professor of Education in the University of Cambridge
  • William Nuttall, Professor of Energy at the Open University[30]
  • Jonathan Powell, Visiting Professor in the School of Medicine at King's College London, Head of Department (Cellular & Molecular Sciences) at MRC Human Nutrition Research[31][32]
  • Kenneth Ruthven, Professor of Education, University of Cambridge[33]
  • Gordon Smith, University of Cambridge Professor, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology[34][35]
  • Marc Weller, University of Cambridge Professor of International Law and International Constitutional Studies[36][37]



  • 1885-1899: Elizabeth Hughes
  • 1899-1902: Margaret Punnett
  • 1902-1908: Helena Powell
  • 1908-1933: Mary Hay Wood
  • 1933-1945: Henriette Dent
  • 1945-1953: Marguerite Verini
  • 1953-1973: Margaret Wileman


The college's head was titled as "Principal" until 1973, and subsequently as "President".


Notable members

The Honor Chapman Lecture was instituted in 2014 - the first two speakers were Dame Judith Mayhew Jonas, lawyer and academic, and Alison Nimmo CBE, chief executive of the Crown Estate.[17]

The Kathleen Hughes Memorial Lecture is given in association with the University of Cambridge Department of Anglo-Saxon, Norse & Celtic. Recent speakers have included Dr James Fraser on Iona and the Burial Places of the Kings of Alba, and Prof Nancy Edwards, on The Early Medieval Sculpture of Wales.[16]

The City Lecture invites speakers from the business and commercial worlds, it was established in 2000. Speakers in recent years have included Lionel Barber, the editor of the Financial Times, and Sir Martin Sorrell, chief executive of WPP plc.[15]

The college hosts a number of lectures and talks throughout the year. Amongst the most significant annual events are the City Lecture, the Kathleen Hughes Memorial Lecture, and the Honor Chapman Lecture.


Hughes Hall holds a May Ball each year, often with a global or international theme. In 2015, the theme was "Around the World in 12 Hours", and in 2014 the theme was "Terra do Brasil".

May Ball

The Boat Club houses its four rowing shells in the Emmanuel College boathouse.

Members of Hughes Hall have regularly been selected for the Cambridge team in the Oxford-Cambridge Varsity Boat Race. In 2015, the men's team included three members of Hughes Hall (Jasper Holst, Ben Ruble, Henry Hoffstot), and the women's boat was coxed by a member of the college (Rosemary Ostfeld). Henry Hoffstot also appeared for Cambridge in the Race in 2014.

The Club has been successful in the May Bumps with the men's first crew winning blades (a distinction accorded to a boat bumping each day of the bumps) in 1993, 1995, 1996, 1997, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2013 and 2014. Uniquely, the Club has been recipient of the Pegasus Cup, awarded to the most successful college boat club competing in the May Bumps each year, three times (2007, 2009, 2014).

Hughes Hall College Boat Club is the rowing club of the College, in 2003 there was an official merger with the boat club of Lucy Cavendish College (a graduate women-only college of the University) creating the "Hughes Hall/Lucy Cavendish Combined Boat Club".

Hughes Hall rowers, Lent Bumps 2012

Boat Club

The college's main performance space is the Pavilion Room which hosts a number of regular musical groups and organizations. The Stradivari Trust, the Cambridge Graduate Orchestra, and the College's Margaret Wileman Society use the space on a regular basis. There is also a program of ad hoc student recitals and concerts, including by the college choir which incorporates students and fellows of the college.[14]


There are a number of college societies, including a Chess Club, Film Society, Writing Group, and Law Society amongst others. The college's "Hat Club" organises events where students and fellows present papers on their research and study to an audience of college members, and the Enterprise Society supports and encourages students with an interest in starting their own business.

Hughes Hall has an active student sports calendar with college teams in Athletics, Badminton, Basketball, Cricket, Football, Rowing, Rugby, Squash, Table Tennis, and others. Members of the college are also active in sports and teams at University and national level.

Societies and Sports

The college punt is called "Buffyfish".[13]

There is a secret society known as Hughes Academy. This intellectual society brings together members from the college and the university, where different issues are discussed.

The college's historic establishment in the 19th century with the purpose of supporting graduate study in Education has continued and developed over time with a significant number of students each year taking courses in professional and applied fields, alongside those studying and carrying out research in more traditional Arts and Humanities subjects. With a mainly postgraduate student body, undergraduates share facilities and an intellectual culture with PhD researchers and MPhil students.

Students and fellows of the College take part in research and study across the full spectrum of the University of Cambridge's fields of activity. Hughes Hall is known for its international and egalitarian ethos, the college does not have a high table and allows students to walk on the lawns throughout the college.

Punting in Cambridge

Student life

Hughes Hall is the nearest of the University's colleges to Cambridge railway station and to the main city center arrival-departure point for long-distances coaches at Parkside. The most direct access route from the college into the center of Cambridge for cyclists and pedestrians is across Parker's Piece, an open park where the rules of football were first codified (1848).

Transport Links

The main college site is near the middle of Cambridge, halfway between Cambridge railway station and the Market Square. The college is located in the Petersfield area of the city, close to Mill Road and accessible from Mortimer Road. The main site is in a mainly residential area, and it is immediately beside Fenner's, the Cambridge University Cricket ground, and across the road from Parkside Pools and Kelsey Kerridge Gym, which are the main public sports facilities in the city. A short walk from the college is the Mill Road Cemetery where a number of the University's renowned historic figures, including astronomer James Challis, Isaac Newton's editor Percival Frost, and historian John Seeley are buried.


In 2014 the college acquired the former Cambridge University gym building on Gresham Road, which is directly across the cricket ground from the main college site, to develop as a new facility - construction began on the site in 2015.[11][12]

More recent buildings on the college site, all of which provide accommodation and other facilities for students, include Chancellor’s Court, inaugurated in 1992 by the then Chancellor of the University, HRH the Duke of Edinburgh, and the Centenary Building, which opened in 1997. In 2005 Hughes opened a new residential, dining, and meeting building, the Fenner's Building, which is immediately beside and overlooks the University cricket ground, also named Fenner's.[8] It is possible to see the spire of the Our Lady and the English Martyrs Church – the tallest church spire in Cambridge - from the building's west-facing windows and terraces.[9][10] The college also owns a number of houses in the nearby area which provide additional student accommodation.

Wollaston Lodge and the Margaret Wileman building, Hughes Hall

that provides further student accommodation. [7] Next door to the Wileman Building is Wollaston Lodge, a fine symmetrical early-20th century building in buff brick, designed by E S Prior,[6] who funded much of the construction cost as part of their mission to support and develop women's education. The building, and its various more modern wings, contains student rooms, the college library, social areas and study spaces, and various college administrative offices.Emily Pfeiffer One wing of the Wileman Building is named the Pfeiffer Wing, after husband and wife Jurgen Edward Pfeiffer and [5] The building is Grade II listed, red brick in Neo-Dutch style, and has an especially notable terracotta porch.[4]

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.