Information for Members
The key facts about Darwin
Darwin is a postgraduate College: the majority of our students are reading for Masters or PhD degrees. Darwin provides an international community in which graduate students, postdoctoral workers, senior visitors, and College Fellows can interact with colleagues across a broad spectrum of research interests.
Darwin, like most Cambridge Colleges, is co-educational and has almost no restrictions on the subjects of study. It has around 50 Professorial and Official Fellows, including a Master (the Head of House elected by the Fellows), most of whom are University Teaching Officers in their subjects. There are also about 20 Research Fellows. The Adrian and Finley Research Fellowships are stipendiary, and in addition 4 to 6 non-stipendiary Research Fellows are elected each year.
The College has almost 800 students and a striking feature of the College is that approximately 70% of the students come from some 75 overseas countries. Darwin also has Associate Members, who are usually academic visitors from abroad, and Research Associates who work in the different Departments of the University.
A particular aim of the College is to broaden the experience of the students, and activities for this purpose are co-ordinated by the Education and Research Committee. Two academic groups, one focused on Arts & Humanities and the other on Sciences, organise seminars, lectures, colloquia and field trips outside Cambridge.
Darwin College is committed to providing an environment which respects the needs of all its members. No member of Darwin shall be discriminated against with regard to national origin, physical disability, race, religion, creed, gender, sexual orientation.
As with all Cambridge Colleges, Darwin is legally constituted under a Royal Charter and governed by its Statutes and Ordinances, which can be viewed via the Governance and Policies on the homepage.
Contact Details - Accommodation
All routine matters concerned with the allocation of rooms and the day-to-day administration of College accommodation are handled by the Accommodation Manager, Sue Beckwith.
The Accommodation Office is located in the Rayne Building, adjacent to the Porter’s Lodge, and is open Monday – Friday
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: 01223 335682
Accommodation General Information
There is accommodation for 114 members in the main body of the College. Some rooms on site have river views whilst the remaining rooms either overlook Queens' Meadow with Silver Street intervening, or have garden views. A further 160 graduates can be housed in rooms in College hostels and graduate houses offsite.
Properties range in style and facilities, offering a range of choice at different prices.
There are 26 self-contained flats for couples, and a small number may be suitable for families with one child.
The allocation of particular rooms, types of rooms, and locations is determined by the Accommodation Manager. Where possible this will take into account any personal preferences that members have expressed such as price, location and facilities.
Residents of flats located off-site are themselves responsable for the Council tax duties for themselves and any partner or family member living with them. Students are exempt from paying Council tax under most circumstances.
At the beginning of each term the Student Registry provide the City Council with a complete list of all postgraduate students on the Register. This should mean that your bill is adjusted prior to being issued. However, for some students this does not happen in time so you may require a letter (proof of enrolment) from the Deanery Office (email: email@example.com).
For any queries regarding Council Tax please contact the City Council direct.
It is your personal responsibility to purchase a TV licence for any television receiver brought into College, including for the use of your computer to watch certain broadcast and streaming services programmes. Your home licence will not cover you and there is no College-wide cover. TV licensing authorities make checks on a regular basis and you are personally liable for any fines imposed.
Wireless network access is also available in most public and residential areas through the eduroam network. Initial access can be made to the Darwin Wireless network using the username and password issued to members when they first arrive but all members are encouraged to configure their devices for eduroam as soon as they can, since this is available across the University and beyond. Further information about the use and configuration of eduroam is available directly from the Darwin Wireless login screen.
All internet access within the College is governed by the rules set out by the College and University.
Accommodation on the main college site is normally allocated for one year only to give as many members as possible a chance to benefit from living for a period on or near the Domus. A waiting list is held in the Accommodation Office for students seeking to change room or to apply for accommodation in further years; please contact the Accommodation Manager for details of eligibility and to apply.
Please note that any room changes part-way through a contract will be subject to a £75 cleaning and administrative fee.
Guests in your Room
College rooms are provided for the sole use of the designated College member who has signed the contract; sharing or sub-letting is not allowed and is expressely mentioned in your accommodation licence as grounds for cancellation of your contract.
Occasional overnight guests are permitted, providing your guest is signed in using the Guest Book in the Porters’ Lodge. 'Occasional' means just that: once in a while or now and then. For example, once or twice a term for one or two nights would be 'occasional'. Only one guest per room is allowed. Long-term or regular sharing beyond what is described as occasional is not allowed and is in breach of your license conditions. You must register any overnight guests with the Porters' Lodge in order to comply with fire evacuation procedures.
Additional beds, mattresses (including blow-up mattresses) and futons are not permitted in student rooms and will be removed without warning if discovered.
The College has a number of rooms available for Guests and for the short-term accommodation of current members including part-time students. These rooms are often in short supply and should be booked as early as possible through the Accommodation office.
Guest rooms are for shorter stays and may be booked by Current members and Fellows for themselves or close relatives – rooms are available for up to a maximum of three nights. Alumni may only book guest rooms for their own use. The rooms are not suitable for children under 12 years of age or for babies.
All rates apply to the guests occupying the room not the member booking the room
A continental breakfast is available from the servery or cafe during normal operating hours. Check in time for guest rooms is from 2pm and check out on the day of departure is by 10am..
Cancellations: Any booking cancelled less than 48 hours before the expected time of arrival will be charged in full.
Payment methods: Availaible here
ANUK Approved Accommodation
Darwin College is a member of the ANUK/Unipol National Codes and follows a distinct set of standards for our student accommodation which is regularly inspected by independant external visitors. The purpose of these Codes, membership of which is voluntary, is to ensure that we provide students with professional housing services.
The standards chosen for the Codes reflect a balance of common sense obligations and responsibilities between landlords and tenants. They also reflect established best practice in the sector and are based on what an average student and their parents would expect of a good quality housing supplier. The standards are supported by the voice of students themselves through the National Union of Students.
What does being a member of the codes mean?
• both parties can enjoy the benefits of good standards of housing management and practice
• misunderstandings and disputes are reduced
• where problems do occur, they can be promptly resolved, and where they are not the Codes operate an independent complaints procedure.
Guidlines for Parties in Hostels
These guidelines are useful to avoid problems with the College, your neighbours and flatmates. Darwin College is first and foremost an academic institution and we therefore ask you to think of others before organising a party. Only residents of a hostel may host a party.
The College expects every member to behave in a responsible manner. Please remember that you have colleagues who may be studying and neighbours who may have good reasons for objecting. The host(s) is/are responsible for ensuring that Fire and Safety regulations are fully complied with throughout the event.
Hosts are also responsible for cleaning up the residue left after a party and for any intentional/unintentional damage to hostel property. Any extra cleaning or damage costs incurred by the College will be levied on the host or hosts.
Animals in College and Residences
Animals and pets are not allowed to be brought onto the main College site nor into any of the residences.
Requests to bring a registered Emotional Support Animal (ESA) onto Universityand/or College property will not normally be granted but will be considered on a case by case basis.
Decisions to allow (or not to allow) an ESA onto University and/or College property will take into account relevant factors such as the reasons for the request and supporting medical evidence, the health, safety and welfare of members of and visitors to the University and/or the College, arrangements to ensure the health, safety and welfare of the ESA and of other animals, adequacy of training, insurance arrangements, the cost implications of any agreed arrangements and, where appropriate, laboratory requirements, licence conditions and any other relevant considerations.
Any request to bring an ESA onto College property should be made in advance to allow the case to be considered. Any ESA which has not been through the process of approval will be subject to a request for immediate removal.
Please be aware that the most common causes of fire or fire alarm activations are:
1. Cooking in student rooms – this is not permitted.
2. Steam from kettles hitting the alarm.
3. Wedging fire doors open while cooking in Gyp Rooms – smoke from cooking then sets off the smoke detectors in corridors.
4. Heat and smoke from candles – use of candles is forbidden in all College properties.
5. Illegal smoking anywhere in the College whether in rooms or in corridors can set of the alarms – smoking is forbidden in all College properties.
6. Smoke or sparks caused by the overloading of electrical circuits by operating too many electrical appliances and using too many adaptors.
7. The use of aerosols near smoke detectors.
WATER (Red Label)
Suitable for wood, paper and textiles (not electrical).
FOAM (Red/Yellow Label)
Suitable for wood, paper, textiles and flammable liquids (not electrical).
POWDER (Red/Blue Label)
Suitable for wood, paper textiles, flammable liquids, live electrical equipment & gases.
CARBON DIOXIDE GAS (Red/Black Label)
Suitable for flammable liquids and live electrical equipment.
FIRE BLANKETS (in Red Container)
Suitable for extinguishing burning clothing and small, contained fires involving burning liquids.
General Health & Safety
In accordance with Health & Safety legislation and the College’s Health & Safety Policy, you are required to: take reasonable care for your Health & Safety and for that of others who may be affected by your actions; and not intentionally or recklessly interfere with or misuse anything provided.
A breach of any of these or other instructions may result in disciplinary action. Residents should make every effort to ensure that their property and surroundings are used in a manner that maintains its safe condition.
In the event that First Aid is required please contact the Porters’ Lodge (3) 35660. There are trained first aiders in various departments and the Porters’ Lodge is a central source of information. There are also a number of members of staff who have trained to become Mental Health First Aiders, a list of First Aiders and Mental Health First Aiders can be found on the noticeboard outside the Porters' Lodge.
Petty theft is unfortunately not uncommon in all Cambridge Colleges, mainly because it is difficult to establish whether all visitors are bona fide or not. Therefore it is essential that rooms and windows are always locked when left unoccupied, and valuables should never be left unattended in public rooms. Keep valuables hidden and out of sight of the main door and/or window.
Members should be on their guard at all times against intruders in College Premises. Doors should be kept locked and admission permitted only to known persons. Intruders and security breaches should be reported to the Porters’ Lodge and details entered in the Incident Log.
Members should avoid walking or cycling in poorly lit parts of the City after dark. Where possible they should not travel alone, particularly off the main roads, late at night.
Personal Alarms are provided free by the DCSA to all members who request them. Helpful tips on personal safety for students can be here.
The security of property and personal possessions belonging to all persons resident in College property is the responsibility of the resident. The College does not accept liability for loss or damage to such property.
You should arrange your own insurance for the contents of your room (the DCSA may have details of reputable companies). Please be sure that it offers the appropriate form of cover. Some companies will not pay compensation for items stolen from your room unless there is physical evidence of a break in. There may also be a clause insisting that all losses are reported within 21 days from the date they occurred – this could present problems if losses occur during vacations.
Room and Property Keys
These are issued to you personally and they should not be given to other people under any circumstances. Doing is a breach of your accommodation terms and conditions.
Please ensure external doors to properties are firmly closed and locked at all times for the safety and security of all residents.
Please ensure your door is locked when you are not in your room.
Reporting a maintenance fault or repair
Any emergencies should be reported by calling the Porters lodge immediately.
Please report any other faults or maintenance issues in your accommodation by:
- Filling out a maintenance request slip in the Porter’s Lodge and placing it in the Maintenance pigeonhole.
- Call the Porters’ Lodge on: 01223 (3) 35660 or Maintenance on: 01223 (3) 35688 – Monday to Friday from 8.30am to 5.00pm or
- email the Clerk of Works directly on firstname.lastname@example.org
Housekeeping issues should be reported using the book in the Porter’s Lodge. Alternatively the College Housekeeping team may be contacted by telephone on: 01223 (3) 35686 or by email: to: email@example.com
We endeavour to resolve all Priority One emergency issues immediately. This normally means that they are in hand within the hour. Priority 2 urgent repairs are normally dealt with within 12 hours except at the weekend where we may need up to 48 hours. Priority 3 non-urgent repairs will be assessed within 48 hours and will be resolved within 14 days. If for any reason a room becomes uninhabitable due to the issue, or due to the disturbance caused by the repair, alternative accommodation will be offered either temporarily or permanently at the same rate as the original accommodation.
We strive to inform occupants of the time of any works to be carried out in room at least 24 hours in advance, except when an emergency issue requires immediate entry. Records are kept by the Clerk of Works as to when any room has been entered, the work that has been carried out, and whether further access will be needed.
Any complaints about outstanding or ineffective repairs may be made in the first place to the Accommodation Office who may then escalate the issue to the Head of Domestic Operations.
The operational staff will normally carry out room checks several times a year, including in the first term. Whenever possible students will be told in advance when access to their rooms is required to ensure privacy. Any possessions not allowed in rooms, as detailed in the accommodation license will be removed.
College staff and College authorised contractors will occasionally need to enter your room to carry out essential duties such as emergency repairs, replacement or cleaning of fixtures/fittings and for inspections. Prior notice will be given by email whenever possible.
Candles and incense burners, shisha or hookah pipes, explosives, fireworks or firearms (including air-guns) may not be kept in any College property under any circumstances. The use or storage of paraffin heaters or any other forms of flammable liquids, including barbecue lighter fluid and coals, etc. is forbidden, as is the use of barbecues on College property (inc. in gardens).
No cooking equipment (e.g. microwave, rice cooker, toaster, kettle etc) is allowed in College rooms; these items should only be kept and used in kitchens.
Failure to obey these prohibitions will be regarded by the College as a serious disciplinary offence.
All appliances used in College properties (inc. kitchens) should conform to a British Standard and should be PAT tested before use. If you are unsure of whether any electrical equipment you have conforms to this standard please speak to the Clerk of Works. The College arranges PAT testing to be carried out in October on all electrical appliances, including student owned equipment. The Maintenance Department will issue details of PAT testing arrangements. The College reserves the right to remove unsafe electrical items from student accommodation
Students who purchase electrical equipment after the October PAT testing week are to contact the Clerk of Works to arrange PAT testing of that equipment. A charge may be levied for this testing.
Items such as fridges & freezers (in addition to those supplied by the College), microwaves, hobs or rice cookers are not permitted in individual rooms. Washing and drying (condensing) machines are allowed in certain areas subject to prior permission from the Clerk of Works.
Square electrical adaptors are no longer legal for use in College properties – 4-way extensions are allowed but Fire Regulations ban multiple usage (i.e. extensions plugged into extensions). If you are travelling from overseas, you are advised to bring the minimum of personal electrical equipment because it may not conform to British Standards. This applies to leads, adaptors and plugs as much as to appliances
Do not replace or remove any furniture from your room unless you have the prior written permission of the Clerk of Works or the Head of Domestic Operations. Any furniture or soft furnishings that are introduced into rooms must comply with current Fire Safety Regulations in respect of fire-retardant materials.
Heating and Hot Water
Central heating will be provided in residences for a period of time that spans the winter season (hot water is provided all year). The start and end dates for heating provision is set annually depending on weather conditions and apply to all properties.
Heating and hot water times may vary from property to property but are usually 6.30am to 11.00am and 3.30pm to 11.50pm. Heating is generally maintained 24 hours a day in the Study Centre during the winter.
The use of electric radiators and/or fan heaters is not permitted in College accommodation, except with prior written permission from the Clerk of Works or Domestic Bursar.
Please see the College Heating Policy for further details.
Remember to turn off all lights and electrical equipment when not in use or when leaving your room. Replacement low energy bulbs are available free of charge from the Porter’s Lodge or from the Clerk of Works office. Bulbs which are difficult to reach or in public areas will be replaced by the Maintenance Department; please report any which are not working.
Bedding & Bed Linen
You must provide your own bedding & bed linen but please use the mattress protectors provided by the College. A ‘Get You In’ pack of basic bedding can be purchased from the Housekeeping department (or Porter’s Lodge outside of office hours) at a cost of £30. Hard boards are available on request from the Clerk of Works to support mattresses if you find them too soft. Additional beds, mattresses (inc inflatable) and futons are not allowed in College rooms.
Housekeeping staff are employed by the College to carry out cleaning of public areas, kitchens/gyp rooms & bath/shower rooms on Monday to Friday mornings, however it is expected that residents take responsibility for the day-to-day cleanliness of both their own rooms and the shared facilities.
Cleaning of rooms and accommodation
Please check your room or flat inventory on arrival, any discrepancies must be put in writing to the Accommodation Manager within the first four weeks of occupancy.
All residents are responsible for the cleaning of their own accommodation and for ensuring that they leave all public areas clean after use.
Hoovers are available to use and must be returned to the appropriate landing/corridor after use, with the wire rewound and ensuring that all corridors and fire exits are kept clear.
All residents are responsible for leaving their room, and any public accommodation they share, clean.
Please note – if you do not clean your room before going on vacation, or if you do not clean and clear your room before handing back your keys, housekeeping charges will be placed on your College account – a list of these charges is available from the Housekeeping Office.
There is a strict ‘no smoking’ policy throughout the College buildings – this includes bedrooms.
Bath and Shower Rooms
These rooms should be left clean and the floors must be left dry at all times so please always pull the shower curtain closed when showering. Empty shampoo bottles will be removed by housekeeping staff. The Dossil (small blue rubber mat) must remain over the shower drain at all times – this is to prevent blockages.
Ensuite rooms are descaled and the shower curtains changed by your cleaner in the first week of each month.
Used toilet paper must be flushed down the toilet not put into bins. Conversely, paper hand towels should be put in the bin, not down the lavatory. Toilet seats are for sitting on; lift them up if you do not wish to use them. Sanitary disposal bins are provided in each property – please do not dispose of sanitary products in waste bins. Toilet tissue is only provided in accommodation on the College site, in the Old Granary and in the Malting House.
Kitchen facilities are provided primarily for the preparation of hot drinks and snacks. The kitchens must be cleaned promptly afterwards. All electrical items in the kitchens must have your room number on or they will be removed. Cooking is not allowed in bedrooms; this includes the use of kettles, toasters, rice cookers and microwaves.
NEVER leave cooking unattended and check that you have SWITCHED OFF the cooker after use.
Do not leave dirty crockery or cutlery around the sink, nor food on cookers and work surfaces. Your cleaner is not responsible for your washing up. Do not leave rice, pasta, tea leaves and remains of other foods in the sinks or basins – please use the kitchen waste bin provided.
Contract cleaning charges will be made if public areas are left in an unreasonable condition after entertaining. Kitchen rubbish must be removed if the bag is full and replaced with a clean one.
Your accommodation provides a refrigerator and kitchen cupboard storage. Out of date and mouldy foods will be removed regularly from fridges. Any cases of pilferage of others foodstuffs will be treated as theft.
All kitchens are provided with a blue or black box for recyclable waste and one bin for landfill waste. Clear signs are provided to say what can and cannot be recycled. You can also take most items for recycling to Recycling Points around the City.
Food recycling compost bins and liners are avilable on request from the Housekeeping department. Students are encouraged to keep these in a clean area of the kitchen and regularly change the liners to avoid smells and insects.
If the wrong waste is put in the recycling boxes the Council will not collect the waste so please read the recycling posters carefully. Everything in the recycling boxes must be washed and clean and not put in bags. No foods or liquids should be put in the recycling box (remnants of foods or liquid will attract vermin and insects, as well as smelling, especially in warm weather).
You can recycle the following items in the boxes situated in the kitchens:
Paper – not shredded
Envelopes (including window envelopes)
Cardboard (broken into small flat pieces – no big boxes)
Tins and cans
Glass bottles and jars (with lids removed)
Plastic bottles - including drinks, shampoo and detergent bottles (with lids removed)
Drink soup cartons (e.g. tetra packs)
Lids and caps must be removed and put in the landfill waste bin to enable the bottles and cartons in the recycling box to be sorted correctly.
All broken glass must be wrapped carefully in several layers of newspaper before it is put in the recycling box (or alternatively it should be wrapped carefully and put in a plastic bag in the landfill bin. This will avoid cuts to students and staff when dealing with the recycling. Be careful not to leave tins with sharp lids sticking out – once the tin is rinsed please fold the lid back into the tin so it does not risk harming anyone.
If you have any questions about, or problems with, recycling in your kitchen please contact either: The Darwin College Green Committee by email on firstname.lastname@example.org or the Housekeeping department email@example.com
In the event that First Aid is required please contact the Porters’ Lodge (3) 35660. There are trained first aiders in various departments and the Porters’ Lodge is a central source of information. There are also a number of members of staff who have trained to become Mental Health First Aiders, a list of First Aiders and Mental Health First Aiders can be found on the noticeboard outside the Porters' Lodge.
You must register with a Doctor (General Practitioner – GP) as a priority when you arrive in Cambridge. A list of GP surgeries can be found in your registration pack and also here.
Students already registered in the UK will need to know their National Health Service (NHS) number when transferring to a Cambridge practice from elsewhere.
In cases of emergency it is important that the College can identify your medical practice. Therefore, we ask all students to enter the contact details of your GP & Surgery onto your Self-Service account on CamSIS. If you experience any problems with this please email the information to the Deanery Office and they can do it for you: firstname.lastname@example.org
In order to offer timely assistance it is important that any member who is ill, whether living in College accommodation or elsewhere, and has nobody to help or assist them should inform the Deanery Office (email@example.com) as soon as possible.
For those who may experience a stomach virus (norovirus; winter vomiting bug) please ensure prompt contact is made.
Students are also advised to keep a supply of hand gel, antiseptic wipes and everyday medicines in their rooms (paracetamol etc); just in case.
Healthcare for overseas students
The National Health Service (NHS) is the UK's state healthcare system providing a wide range of services including appointments with a doctor (GP), hospital treatment and dental care. You are advised to register with a doctor/GP practice as soon as you arrive in Cambridge.
Student visa and immigration health surcharge / six months or longer
Overseas students coming to the UK for six months or longer will pay an immigration health surcharge as part of their visa application fee. This will entitle you to access the NHS at no additional cost and in the same way as a permanent UK resident. Like UK residents, additional changes may need to be paid for optical treatment, dental care and prescriptions.
Short Study periods
If staying for less than six months or making occasional study visits to the UK you may need to take out medical insurance as you will be liable for NHS charges.
Further information on all of the above is provided by the UK Council for International Student Affairs
Support/Mental Health/Student Wellbeing
As a member of Darwin, you have access to a Tutor - a College Fellow - who is here to give you confidential advice and support on non-academic problems you may experience and, aided by the Deanery, can direct you to specialist support if necessary. Regular academic queries should be directed to your Supervisor / Department / Director of Studies, but your Tutor may advise in case of difficulties. If you need urgent advice, you may wish to contact the Deanery directly; the Dean provides support and advice to Tutors and is available to take over complex issues as required.
Get to know your Tutor - they will email you either before you arrive in Cambridge or shortly thereafter. Keep all relevant contact details to hand, and update your Tutor with your progress and any difficulties you might encounter. You should aim to see/make contact with your Tutor at least twice each academic year, either in a group or individually as necessary.
Your Tutor is a source of general advice and support. He or she is always happy to listen to your experiences of studying and research, to offer advice where appropriate, and to help you to find academic staff and students in College with similar interests. Your Tutor will have access to reports submitted online by your supervisor concerning your academic progress, and to any self-assessment exercise you complete via CamSIS and will liaise where necessary with academic supervisors and Departments/Faculties, particularly if you are experiencing any difficulties. If you are worried about what a report says, or want a different perspective on your work, talk to your Tutor.
More commonly, if you fall ill or your work has been disrupted or you need to take time out for personal reasons, your Tutor will help you ensure that your application is presented properly to the relevant University bodies.
The University of Cambridge's student wellbeing pages also contain a vast amount of helpful information.
Click to the next tab for counselling information.
Darwin College-Based Counselling Service
In addition to the University Counselling Service (UCS), Darwin College provides a free and confidential College-Based Counselling service for all postgraduate students registered at the College.
College-Based Counselling is a scheme at the University Counselling Service and subject to the same policies and procedures, including confidentiality.
How do I make an appointment?
Many people sort out problems by talking to friends, family or staff in their College or Department. Sometimes looking up some information about things that are concerning them is helpful and UCS has a large selection of self-help information available on their website. However, there are times when this is not enough and you may wish to speak to the College-Based Counsellor in a private setting in College.
The College-Based Counsellor is available on Mondays during Full Term between 9am and 5pm. Please be sure to indicate that you are a member of Darwin when you apply for counselling.
Students completing the online form are encouraged to apply to UCS and College-Based Counselling simultaneously for the shortest possible waiting time.
For more information and to apply, please go to: College-Based Counselling at Darwin and complete the online form.
Please note, that during peak times, your application will be acknowledged and your details may be placed on a waiting list until a suitable appointment becomes available.
Student Drop-In Sessions at Darwin College
Drop-in sessions are available to all Darwin College students who have concerns about their emotional well-being. These sessions are not suitable for students who are feeling at risk or in crisis. In these situations the student should contact their College Graduate Tutor, who can arrange an appointment with a Mental Health Advisor at the University Counselling Service, or they can call NHS 111 option 2 to speak with a Mental Health professional or Samaritans on 116 123.
The sessions are short appointments which last for up to 20 minutes with the College Counsellor. They provide an opportunity for students to talk about their concerns and to find out more about the emotional support available.
University Counselling Service
The University Counselling Service is situated at 2-3 Bene't Place, Lensfield Road, Cambridge CB2 1EL (Tel: 01223 332865) and is mainly intended to assist with major problems of a personal nature. There are full-time counsellors employed and appointments can be made either by telephone or by email. It is open from 9.00am to 5.30pm on Mondays and Fridays and from 9.00am to 7.30pm on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.
This is a fully confidential service. Full information can on the UCS website.
Nightline is a listening support service, run by students for students, every night of Cambridge University full term. It is based in Cambridge and is available to students at Cambridge and Anglia Ruskin Universities. Nightline won’t tell you what to do or give advice, but they will provide you with the time and space to chat and talk things through in confidence. Nightline website
Tel: 01223 744444
Pigeonholes for students, Fellows and staff are located in the Porters’ Lodge. Please check your pigeonhole regularly for any mail or notices.
The College address should be used for your mail, rather than your hostel address - this helps you if any packages are delivered as these can be signed for by the Porters’ and it also helps the College to forward any mail which arrives after you have completed your studies.
Large packages or letters will be kept at the Porter’s Lodge and a card asking you to collect them will be put in your pigeonhole. Packages that are being couriered should be delivered or picked up from the Porters’ Lodge. Please make sure the address is clearly marked on the package (preferably typed).
Visitors to Darwin
We would invite all visitors to sign in at the Porters Lodge when visiting Darwin College. Here you will have access to general information as well as our health and safety procedures and fire evacuation plans. If you require any help evacuating in an emergency, please advise the Porters Lodge request a PEEP form which you can return prior to your visit.
If you are attending an event, all information should have been provided to you prior to your arrival by the organiser.
If you are hosting an event in College, please ensure you have advised the Porters Lodge or the College organiser ahead of time if any of your attendees require a PEEP.
If you are a contractor, please ensure you report to the Porters Lodge regardless of whether your work is on or off-site to receive a safety and orientation briefing
The Deanery comprises the Dean, Dr Duncan Needham, and the Deputy Deans, Dr Matthew Jones and Dr Simone Weyand. They are assisted by two members of staff, Mrs Karen Knight and Miss Gillian Davies who are very approachable and can deal with many straightforward enquiries.
In conjunction with the Graduate Tutors, the Deans maintain an oversight of the admission, registration, health, and general welfare of all graduate members and carry out all the functions associated with a Senior Tutor in other Colleges. Although the Faculty/Department and the University as opposed to your college are mainly responsible for your studies, the College is concerned about the welfare of its students. The Deans are aware of the difficulties experienced by postgraduates, and are willing to talk to you if you are experiencing problems in getting started or at other times. All postgraduate members may see the Dean and the Deputy Deans on any matter (be it academic, financial, welfare, personal, etc.) by appointment through the Deanery Office (see contact details below).
Postal address: Deanery Office, Darwin College, Silver Street, Cambridge CB3 9EU
Mrs Karen Knight (Deanery Office Manager) firstname.lastname@example.org
Miss Gillian Davies (Deanery Administrator) email@example.com
Tel: +44 (0) 1223 (3)35675 (during normal office hours)
Tel: +44 (0) 1223 (3)35660 (Porters’ Lodge for emergencies)
Conduct in College
The College is an international community of scholars whose members are admitted without discrimination irrespective of nationality, gender or subject of study. The Governing Body expects all members to uphold the good standing of the College as a place of education, learning and research, and to obey the Master's decision on all matters within her authority.
The College hopes all members will make full use of the lunching and dining facilities provided by the College; members are encouraged to dine in College at least once a week during Full Term. Academic Gowns should be worn to Formal Hall Dinners, Guest Nights and Official Dinners.
In general, the College is run with as little internal regulation and as few rules as are necessary for the general comfort and wellbeing of all. However, as the Vice Masters and Dean are responsible for discipline, it is appropriate that certain guidelines should be followed. Where relevant, these guidelines also apply when using social media.
1. Every graduate member is entitled to a private life, and there is a genuine desire to stay out of personal matters unless the member concerned would like help. On the other hand, if asked to help, the Vice Masters, Dean and their staff will do all they can to provide confidential assistance.
2. It is important that members do not disturb the lives of others. There are many ways in which this can arise. Noisy parties for example, that go on until the early hours, or loud music played privately during the night, can disturb the sleep of members in adjacent rooms, or neighbours near to College hostels. Communal facilities, such as kitchens, must be kept clean and tidy by those who use them. (See also Guidelines for Parties in Hostels)
3. College rooms are provided for the sole use of the occupants; long-term sharing is not allowed. Occasional overnight guests are permitted – please do not abuse this dispensation. The Guest book which is kept in the Porters’ Lodge must be signed on each occasion to comply with fire regulations. (See also Guests in Your Room)
4. It is College policy that, when members become involved with the civil or criminal law, the College will intervene only in exceptional circumstances.
5. The Vice Masters and Dean will not excuse any physical action directed against College staff, other members, or College or personal property, and will take appropriate action as required. Fortunately, since its foundation, Darwin has been largely free from unpleasant episodes of this type.
6. Following a DCSA campaign and referendum, Darwin has adopted a no-smoking policy throughout the College which also includes all student accommodation.
The Vice Masters and Dean hope that all members will endorse these principles as fair and reasonable. They are always willing to discuss their application with any member.
Two sources of limited support are available for academic travel. The grants are distributed by competition (either termly or yearly) with corresponding deadlines. Further details and an application form are available here:
The College has no funds to provide financial assistance to off-set the costs of research, and travel grants are not available for work or travel that is essential to a candidate’s studies.
Darwin College Sports Bursaries
Darwin College offers Sports Bursaries to student athletes who represent the College at a University level (Blues and Half Blues). Those with significant other sporting commitments may also be considered in exceptional cases. The Darwin College Blues Sports Bursary is awarded annually at the end of Lent term.
Please note that we can usually only cover subscription fees and in some cases we can contribute to equipment costs. We are not in a position to reimburse for travel to training camps. All applicants are required to submit a brief summary of expenses plus original supporting documents (relevant receipts or invoices). Please keep your receipts in a safe place so you can apply for the Sports Bursary in Lent term.
We will circulate another message in Lent, announcing when the applications are open, and the deadline (usually end of Lent term). For any further questions or queries, please contact the DCSA Sports Officers firstname.lastname@example.org
Childcare & Childcare Bursary Scheme
The University Childcare Office provides helpful information for students with children. They provide information on the University and College provision for student parents, advice on financial issues, help with finding appropriate accommodation and health care as well as suggestions for places to visit and activities for children in the area.
Visit the Childcare Office website for information about University Nurseries, University Holiday Play Scheme, Information Service for Student Parents, and Support with Childcare Costs.
Darwin takes part in the Central Childcare Bursary Scheme, assisting with childcare costs. The awards are means-tested and depend on family income, expenditure and are only available to eligible EU and overseas students. Details of how to make an application can be found on the Childcare Office website.
If you have any further questions about childcare as a student parent please contact the Deputy Dean at Darwin (Dr Sara Baker, email@example.com).
COVID-19 information for members
University of Cambridge COVID testing
UK government stay at home guidance for households with possible or confirmed COVID-19 infection
Darwin COVID FAQs
Vaccination advice for incoming and current students
University guidance on exceptional circumstances for remote study in 2021-22
UK government guidance for international arrivals
Self-isolation guidelines following contact with a positive case
You will receive a University Card upon your arrival at the College; however, in some instances, the card may be handed over by a Faculty/Department. Your card will have many functions during your time at College and the University, including Library services, door access, purchases in Dining Hall, etc.
Damage, Loss, or Theft of University Cards
All applications to obtain a replacement student card should be made to the Deanery Office via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
A charge of £12 is made by the University Card Office for each replacement and this charge will be added to your College account. . There is no charge for the replacement of a damaged or faded or expired card, but the card must be returned to the Deanery.
In the case of theft please try to obtain a crime reference number as this may negate the charge altogether.
CamSIS - The Cambridge Student Information System
The University manages student records through a web-based system known as CamSIS. You will need to use CamSIS via your own self-service account (referred to as a Student Centre on CamSIS) in order to manage your life data while a student at Cambridge. CamSIS, along with the manage your student information pages, are your most important sources of information.
All students have access to their own record through their online self-service. This service will be familiar to most of you already through the application process. Students are responsible for managing various aspects of their interactions with the University and its staff though their self-service, for example:
- notification of changes in contact details
- exam enrolments
- applying for allowances, intermission, leave to work away
- supervision reports
BA and MA Status
All registered graduate students automatically have BA (Bachelor of Arts) status if they are under the age of 24, and MA (Master of Arts) status if they are over 24. BA or MA status confers the privileges of a BA or MA respectively in relation to the University Library, the various Museums and the Botanic Garden, and governs the type of gown that should be worn. The College claims the appropriate status for those who are entitled, but who do not acquire it automatically.
Student Certificates & Forms
The Deanery should be approached if you need any of the following documents:
· Confirmation of study letters or degree approval letters
· Council Tax exemption certificates
· An introduction to UK banking facilities
Please note that at busy times, certificates may take up to three working days to be provided.
Matriculation is the formal on-line process of enrolling in the University of Cambridge and specifically at Darwin College. At Darwin, all new members (except those who have matriculated before either at Darwin or another Cambridge College) matriculate by completing the University Matriculation form. Details of how to complete this and a live link will be emailed out to all new arrivals at the beginning of each term.
Every candidate for matriculation must subscribe to the following declaration: "I promise to observe the Statues and Ordinances of the University as far as they concern me, and to pay due respect and obedience to the Chancellor and other officers of the University."
You can find the Statutes and Ordinances here.
By signing you will also be giving consent to the processing by the College and the University of your personal data for proper purposes (as described on the statement about the Data Protection Act 1998), and promising to observe the provisions of the Act yourself.
Keeping Terms By Residence
The University requires that all students ‘keep’ terms of residence in Cambridge before they can be awarded any degree. Residence during a term is normally taken as evidence of a term of research, provided that work is carried out to the satisfaction of the appropriate Degree Committee.
Graduation / Degree Congregations
General information about graduation and the celebration of degrees conferred 'in absence' during the Covid-19 pandemic
Degrees are conferred at Congregations of the Regent House, held in the Senate House. Normally, these are held monthly from October to July, although like many Colleges, Darwin does not present candidates at all of them. The College Praelector is responsible for presenting Darwin's candidates for conferral or "celebration" of their degrees. It is possible for your degree to be conferred 'in absence', without attending a Congregation, but graduands are encouraged to experience the ceremony and nearly all find the day enjoyable.
No guest ceremonies and live-streaming
During the continuing pandemic, Degree Congregations for 'in person' conferral of degrees have not taken place since February 2020, but students have been able to graduate 'in absence' if they wish. The University has now resumed 'in person' ceremonies for 23 October and 27 November 2021, but without guests. This is to make sure the occasions remain Covid-secure. These Congregations will be videoed and available both as a live-stream and on a catch-up basis for a limited period thereafter. By attending 'in person' you are giving consent to being included in the live-stream. It will not be possible to take part in the ceremony and not be part of the recording. A private link for this will be emailed to all graduands prior to the ceremony. It is also hoped that this will be available to view in Bradfield Court live on the day. A further Degree Congregation will be held on the 29 January 2022 but will be for "in absence" degrees only. Information on other dates for 2022 will be added to the web-site as and when they are finalised.
If you choose to have your degree conferred 'in absence, it cannot be conferred again, so normally there is no possibility of any ceremony later. During the Covid pandemic, however, those who graduate 'in absence' while normal 'in person' conferral with guests is not possible can have their degree 'celebrated' at a future Congregation. Celebration will be almost identical to graduation, with some small differences in the Latin words used.
Please note, however, that if you attend a 'no guests' Congregation, either to graduate in person or have a degree celebrated, you cannot attend any further ceremony for that degree.
Students who delay graduating or take their degree 'in absence' with the intention of having it celebrated when guests can be present will still be able to attend Congregations in 2021-22 and beyond, provided the College has the capacity.
Neither Darwin College or the University can predict changes made necessary by Covid-19 and must comply with public health advice and rules. An upsurge of infection may result in increased restrictions, the re-imposition of travel-bans and quarantine requirements and/or a change in Congregations to 'in absence' only.
Booking for a Ceremony
For most this can be done via your self-service access in CamSIS. Please click on the 'graduation' tile on your homepage and follow the instructions. If you no longer have access to your CamSIS self-service account, please download and complete this form and email it to the Deanery Office: email@example.com
Confirmation of approval for the degree must have been received by the College from the Student Registry at least ten days prior to the chosen date. If in doubt please check with your Department prior to submitting a booking. You can book in 'subject to final approval' but only do this if you are sure everything will go through in time.
All graduands must be clear of College debt. In common with other Colleges, Darwin declines to present for a degree those in debt to the College. Please contact the Accounts Office for further information: firstname.lastname@example.org to ensure that you have settled all bills before making arrangements to proceed to your degree.
For information on graduating, Degree Congregation dates, dress code, academical dress hire etc. please read these Guidelines for graduation.
"On the day"
The College will hold a Degree Lunch/High Tea for those attending, part of which will include a full dress rehearsal with the College Praelector. A full timetable will be sent out to all graduands approximately one week prior to the event.
Covid-safe measures at the Senate House
Social distancing will be observed in the Senate House Yard and in the Senate House itself. On arrival, students will queue, socially distanced, under marquees in the Senate House Yard before entering the Senate House in single file. Although lined up in pairs whilst waiting, you will be presented in threes (distanced at 2m) in the House. This will be explained more fully at the dress rehearsal in College on the day.
Collection of Degree Certificates
Certificates will be available on the day to those graduating 'in person' but will not be given out in the Senate House. A Student Registry representative will be just inside the gate with certificates and copies of the degree list.
This service continues, with social distancing measures and limited contact. As well as photographing inside the Senate House when degrees are conferred or celebrated, Tempest, the University's official photographers, will offer studio photography and certificate framing services on the day.
A live-stream of the event will be provided to allow family and friends to view the ceremony. A link will be emailed to all those graduating a week or so prior to the event.
In addition to a face covering, students should bring with them a means of payment if they wish to purchase photographs etc. Preferred payment methods (for reasons of hygiene) are card or phone payments. Ideally, students should not bring bags as they will have to be left on the Senate House lawn for collection after the ceremony. If the weather is wet, umbrellas an also be left on the lawn. Once finished, all students should exit via the South-East Gate (opposite Ryder & Amies).
For any queries please email the Deanery Office: email@example.com
Graduation / Degree Congregation Dates 2021/22
GRADUATION DATES 2021/22
Michaelmas Term 2021:
23 October 2021 (*)
27 November 2021 (*)
Lent Term 2022:
29 January 2022 (**)
26 February 2022 (***)
26 March 2022 (***)
2 April 2022 (**)
Easter Term 2022:
30 April 2022 (***)
21 May 2022 (***)
Long Vacation 2022:
23 July 2022 (***)
(*) Congregation for proceeding "in person" and "in absence"; no guests
(**) Congregation for "in absence" degrees only
(***) Details to be confirmed at a later date
UK Immigration and Visas
Students from outside the EEA or Switzerland are likely to need to apply for a visa in order to study at the University.
Students from within the EEA and Switzerland are likely to need to apply for a visa in order to study at the University if they are moving to the UK to study.
If you already have UK immigration permission in another category, you may be able to study on that without needing to apply for a student visa. You will need to provide evidence of this prior to starting at Cambridge.
Irish citizens are not subject to UK immigration control and do not need to apply for the EU Settlement Scheme or a visa to live and study in the UK.
The UK operates an immigration system underpinned by the principle of sponsorship. You must apply for a visa prior to travelling to the UK unless you are already in the UK holding a visa that permits you to make an application for further leave to remain under the student route. Further details can be found here.
For all other queries please go to The International Student Office web-site.
Collecting your BRP:
Wen your entry clearance student visa has been granted, you will be issued a time-limited entry vignette in your passport which will enable you to travel to the UK. You must arrive in the UK within the validity of the entry vignette to enter on your student visa.
Your actual visa, in the form of a Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) will need to be collected on arrival in the UK, either from your College or the local Post Office. Your BRP is the documentary evidence of your UK immigration permission.
If you are required to self-isolate on arrival you should not collect your BRP until after the required period of self-isolation has been completed.
Providing copies of your immigration documents:
After you have arrived in the UK but before you commence your studies in person, you are required to upload your immigration documents to your College for checking. An information sheet on this process will be in your registration pack. Please ensure you read the instructions prior to uploading any documentation.
The majority of students on a visa will need to undertake termly registration. At the start of Full Term you will receive an email from the Deanery Office asking you to confirm (within seven days) that you are engaged with study and are abiding by the terms of your student visa. At this time a check will also be carried out on your contact details.
Due to Covid-19 all checks are currently being done remotely.
The International Student Office provides specialist support to the University and Colleges to ensure compliance with student immigration legislation and has responsibility for the University’s Student Visa sponsorship of its overseas students.
Ways to Pay
PAYMENT OF YOUR COLLEGE ACCOUNT
By Bank Transfer / Internet Banking (Preferred method of payment):
Account Name: Darwin College — Bursar's Account
Account Number: 00298972
Sort Code: 20 17 68
Barclays Bank Plc, 9-11 St Andrew's Street, Cambridge, CB2 3AX
Reference: Please quote your College Account Number (located in the top right hand section of your invoice / statement) followed by your Surname (e.g. ABC1234 Bloggs)
IBAN: GB55 BARC 2017 6800 2989 72
Students with international bank accounts and debit/credit cards:
International students with an overseas bank account or card can pay their fees and deposits through TransferMate in their own currency with no currency conversion fees and beneficial exchange rates.
- No International sender/receiver fees
- Preferential exchange rates
- 24 hour online tracking of all payments
- 24 hour Customer Service
- Allows you to pay in your local currency & to a local bank account
TransferMate also accept China Union Pay.
UK Debit Card:
Payments can be made either in person or by phone as below. We do not accept payment by credit card or international cards.
Made payable to 'Darwin College' with your College account number clearly written on the back of the cheque and/or a copy of the invoice attached. Your monthly statement has a tear off remittance slip which should be returned with your payment. Please post all cheque payments through the accounts office door or send them to: The Accounts office, Darwin College, Silver Street, Cambridge, CB3 9EU.
Cash will only be accepted where the above methods are not readily available and the payment is under £20. (In person ONLY during opening hours — please DO NOT post cash)
If you are unable to comply with these arrangements or are having difficulties with your bank, please contact the Accounts Office as soon as possible firstname.lastname@example.org
Combined Graduate Fees are for tuition/supervision and College membership; they do not pay for housing, meals or personal expenses. Combined Graduate Fees are payable annually in advance, usually in October. Details of the Combined Graduate Fee can be found here
The Privately-funded Undergraduate Fee is currently payable only by overseas MASt students.
Fee queries should be directed to email@example.com Tel: +44 (0) 1223 335679
College Bills for Meals, Wine, etc.
Sundry charges are made monthly by statement for settlement not later than the middle of the following month.
Payment of a College Account can be made by internet banking/bank transfer (preferred method), UK debit card (we do not accept payment by credit card or international cards), or by UK cheque (see Ways to Pay above).
Failure to comply with these terms of payment will result in the withdrawal of relevant College facilities, and may eventually lead to the member's name being withdrawn from the College Register and thus automatically from the University's Register of Graduate Students. Click 'Next' below for the College's Bill Payment Policy.
Any queries regarding your College bill should be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: +44 (0)1223 335665
Bill Payment Policy
The College is sympathetic to students experiencing financial difficulties. Students encountering financial difficulties should consult their Graduate Tutor as soon as possible – support is available.
Accommodation charges are invoiced monthly or quarterly in advance (you may express a preference) by the Accounts Department and these are sent to your student email address. Accommodation invoices must be paid within 14 days of receipt unless otherwise expressly agreed in advance in writing. Failure to do so may result in a penalty charge (up to 1.5% per month) being made every 28 days on overdue accounts.
Any debts outstanding 28 days after the due date will be referred to the Head of Domestic Operations for action. If any accommodation charges remain outstanding at the start of the next calendar quarter, students may be given notice to leave College accommodation as detailed in the accommodation license agreement. Any student with outstanding debt will not be eligible to apply for any new accommodation term (e.g. continuing students will not be admissible for the ballot).
College Account – Meals / Formals / Photocopying / Keys, etc
Sundry charges are made monthly by statement and these are sent to your student email address. The outstanding amount must be paid within 14 days of receipt unless otherwise expressly agreed in advance in writing. Failure to do so may result in a charge (up to 1.5% per month) being made every 28 days on overdue accounts.
If College Bills remain outstanding at the start of the next term, relevant College facilities (e.g. Meals / Formals) may be withdrawn.
Academic fees are determined by the University and then invoiced for the full academic year (or the portion of that year the student is present for) at the start of the term that the student arrives. Continuing students will be invoiced at the start of Michaelmas term for the upcoming year.
Based on information provided to the Accounts Department regarding the funding of academic fees, students who are fully or partially funded by sponsors (eg. University Dept. / Embassy / Cambridge Trust) will be invoiced directly for their portion of the fees. For students who are fully or partially self-funded, the students will be invoiced directly for the amount due from them. Payment of this is expected within 28 days of the invoice being issued unless an installment plan has been agreed in writing with the Accounts Department to settle the bill in termly or monthly installments.
Self-funded students whose fees remain unpaid at the beginning of the following term will be referred to College Officers for further action.
Persistent failure to comply with these regulations may eventually lead to the withdrawal of exam results, the inability to attend a Graduation ceremony, or (as per College Statute XVIII.7) the member's name being withdrawn from the College Register and thus automatically from the University's Register of Graduate Students. The date for the purpose of Statute XVIII.7 shall be the end of the term following the term in which such payment initially falls due.
Payments of Grants and Bursaries
Authorised external grants and bursaries are paid by the Accounts Office and are paid direct into UK bank accounts around the beginning of October, January, April and July. Bank details will need to be provided prior to payments being made. Hardship, language learning, travel and sports grants by the College are paid shortly after they have been awarded. For details of these grants & other sources of financial support available to students please see Awards and Scholarships - Funding for current students.
Students are reminded that the University (Student Registry) does not permit any student to undertake paid work outside the University or College while studying full-time. In accordance with University stipulations any student employed by the College must work no more than six, or exceptionally ten, hours a week. Any student employed by the College will be issued with a formal contract by the Bursary.
The Bursar and the Second Bursar are responsible for the financial affairs and business administration of the College, for the maintenance, security, and operation of its buildings, grounds, and services and for the general supervision of the College staff.
If you wish to contact the Bursar or the Second Bursar please direct your enquiry to the Bursary Assistant in the first instance email@example.com Tel: 01223 335661
The following pages relate mainly to the use of College facilities, and, where required, how to book them through the Bursary or otherwise.
The Bursary administers bookings for College facilities including supervision and meeting rooms and the Island/barbecue.
Bookings can be made by College members, staff and parties external to the College, such as University Societies. All bookings are subject to final approval by the Head of Domestic Operations in accordance with the College's Code of Practice for meetings on College premises, the College's duties under s31 of The Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015 and the College's wider duties under PREVENT legislation.
Seminar rooms are primarily intended for educational use or for College business; the Head of Domestic Operations or the Bursar, consulting across the College if necessary, will make any decision required on permissible other use. Meetings and seminars held in College rooms must be apolitical and secular – if you are unsure about this policy please seek advice when making your booking. Resources such as projectors, screens & flip charts can also be booked for meetings.
Seminar rooms should be booked in advance with the Bursary. Because charges, including VAT, may be levied depending on the activity for which the room is booked, ‘last-minute’ access, especially after office hours, may be denied as the College cannot provide a quotation.
Those seeking to access to an unbooked seminar room after office hours will therefore only be allowed to use the room if the Porters (who hold the keys) are satisfied that the room will be used for private study only.
Only food provided by the College catering department in normal office hours is allowed in seminar rooms. This is because the College wishes to ensure food eaten in seminar rooms is as odorously neutral as possible and cleared away promptly. Because most seminar rooms are underneath or close to accommodation, bookings will only be taken up to 9pm for a meeting or up to midnight for private study. The Study Centre has 24/7 access for those who wish to work during silent hours.
There will, of course, be exceptional circumstances when these rules are inappropriate and can be waived, but those circumstances must be sanctioned by the Head of Domestic Operations or the Bursar.
The Common Room may be booked for periods up to two hours between 5.00pm and 8.45pm during the week and between10.00am and 8.45pm on weekends. Bookings are made with the Bursary - firstname.lastname@example.org.
Use of the Common Room is free for Darwin College societies, or events which are open to all Darwin members. Bookings for University societies or private groups will incur a hire fee, and are subject to availability – please contact the Bursary for further details - email@example.com.
Darwin College is lucky enough to occupy several fine late Georgian and Victorian houses, with gardens running along the River Cam. Students are urged to maintain the tranquillity and quality of these surroundings, particularly as regards no leaving any litter or waste, smoking only in the designated areas (and using the receptacles for butts), and not playing any amplified music.
For bookings of the Small Island, where barbecues are permitted, go to the next tab.
The gardens may be used for private social events by arrangement in certain circumstances. A request for any such event must be made to the Head of Domestic Operations. If a request is agreed, the person who makes the reservation must be present throughout the entire period. Such a reservation will not, however, mean that other users of the garden may be denied access.
Barbecue & Island Booking
Barbecues are not allowed within College accommodation or in hostels but you can book the DCSA barbecue for use on the Small Island, in the area to the left of the bridge. Island bookings are usually taken from 1 May to 30 October, depending on weather conditions.
Booking forms and the terms of conditions of use for the Island & DCSA barbecue can be found on the DCSA website http://www.dcsa.dar.cam.ac.uk/bbq-island To check availability and confirm your booking please email the Bursary - firstname.lastname@example.org
The Small Island can only be booked by a current member or alumnus of Darwin College, and the member should be present on the Island throughout the booking.
The maximum capacity for the Island is 30 people. There is no charge for current members (students or fellows) hosting a private party, however all other bookings (for alumni, University departments, societies or private companies) incur a hire charge to be determined by the Bursary
The College bar – known as ‘DarBar’ - is located in the Hermitage (next to the Common Room) and staffed by students; these staff are from the graduate membership of the College and are listed on the Bar Rota. Only those so listed are permitted to serve behind the bar.
DarBar is a lively social hub for resident and non-resident students with table football and pool tables, music and events often organised. More can be found out at their Facebook page or their own website.
The bar is traditionally open seven days a week and the opening hours are from 21:00 to 23:59. The bar will be closed promptly at 23:59 each evening (unless an extension has been granted by the Head of Domestic Operations). Last orders are called at 23:40 and the stacking of drinks near to closing time is not permitted.
Members of College may bring a maximum of three guests into the bar on the strict condition that they must enter their name and those of their guests into the guest book held behind the bar. Failure to do so will result in the non-registered guests being asked to leave the premises for the evening. The guests remain the responsibility of their host and must leave the bar when their host leaves. Guests must be over the age of 18.
No person shall be served at the bar that is not known by the person in charge to be a member of College, or to have been signed in by a member of College. Persons not known must produce acceptable identification, such as a University Card, to prove their eligibility to use the Bar. Any person who refuses to comply with the request for identification shall be refused service at the bar.
The Head of Domestic Operations is the College Licensee and on his behalf the Porters will ask anyone who is drunk or disorderly to leave the bar if the Bar staff have not already done so.
Study Centre and Library
Covid-19: During the pandemic it has been necessary, exceptionally, to operate a booking system for using the Study Centre. Book via this link.
The purpose-built Study Centre occupies the narrow site (formerly the Darwin Family kitchen garden) between the Old Granary and the main Silver Street bridge across the Cam. The building was designed to provide members with a quiet working space, to house the College Library, and to provide members with computing facilities. Access to the building is by plastic security card available, on payment of a deposit, from the College Accountant.
The library contains a general collection of about ten thousand books, displayed along one curved wall of shelving in the Study Centre. This collection consists of works of reference and a selection of literature, with the aim of helping to stimulate and satisfy members' curiosity and to encourage wide reading. No attempt is made to provide a comprehensive resource for members' specialised research. For that, members will turn to the excellent University Libraries and Faculty Libraries
Information on finding and borrowing books, DVDs, supporting the library via Amazon, and on our special collections is on the Library Information Pages
The Library strongly encourages members of the College to recommend books for purchase within the Library's general acquisition policy; books can be recommended here or by emailing email@example.com. Interested members of the College are also warmly invited to sit on the Library Committee.
The open-plan design of the interior of the Study Centre produces an attractively light working space, but the openness also means that members must be considerate and avoid disturbing others while moving around and while working. In addition to keeping the building as a quiet area, members are asked not to eat while in the Centre.
Front Door & Lockers Keys
Front door keys, allowing access to the College via the main door when it is closed, are available to current students who have moved out of College accommodation. Front door keys are issued by the Porters' Lodge there is a £10 key deposit which is charged to your College account and will be returned when you return the key.
College has a number of lockers that can be rented by current students. Lockers are allocated on a yearly basis, to register your interest please email firstname.lastname@example.org. You will be assigned a locker and issued with the terms and conditions to read before being issued a key by the Porters. A £20 key deposit will be charged to your College account and will be returned when you return the key.
Normal Lunchtime and Dinner Meals
Breakfast, lunch and dinner in the Hall are normally self-service meals. Formal Halls are organised in the evening during Term in the Hall and form part of the tradition of dining in College.
The Servery is open seven days a week but operates at reduced service during the Summer vacation and Christmas periods.
A plant-based option is availble at every meal, and the Catering team to their best to accommodate all dietary requests.
The Servery menu is published online here and displayed on the Catering notice board in The Rayne Building. Charges depend on the items selected; a price list is available online and on the notice board.
All meals are subsidised by College funds for members and so guest and visitor meals are charged at a higher rate.
The College uses an EPOS system (Electronic Point of Sale), operated by your University Card. The tills are located at the end of the servery. You will be invoiced via your College account for food consumed by you and any guests at the end of each month.
Etiquette & Dress Code
Other than at Formal Halls, dining at Darwin at is an informal, social occasion, with interactions between all members encouraged. Fellows and College Officers eat with students and staff, fostering a sense of community amongst all the membership.
There is no dress code for normal lunch and dinner service, however the standard of dress should be reasonable as there may be College guests being hosted in the Hall at any mealtime. Thus, for example, beach footwear, sports clothing, and hats or caps are never appropriate items to be worn in the Dining Hall during meals.
Conversation should be kept at a reasonable level, so avoiding the need for anyone to shout. College members are expected to act with respect and courtesy towards other diners and staff.
Lunchtime Research Seminars
All students at Darwin are encouraged to present their research at informal seminars held on Tuesdays and Thursdays during term. All members are welcome, whatever your degree or discipline. These talks are an excellent opportunity for members to become acquainted with the enormous breadth of research that is undertaken by Darwin Students. Members on two or three year courses are encouraged to present a talk at some time in the duration of their study.
Darwin members pick up lunch from the Servery at 12.45pm as normal, taking it into the Richard King Room (on the left at the top of the stairs leading to the Dining Hall). Non-Darwin members are welcome to attend, although lunch is only available to guests of members. The talk begins at about 1.15pm and lasts for about 20 minutes and is followed by questions over coffee. The seminar will finish by 1.45pm at the latest. Everyone is welcome to attend both groups. Please return your trays to the clearing station in the Hall by 1.50pm.
Tuesday lunchtime is generally devoted to topics in the Humanities and Social Sciences.
Thursday lunchtime is generally devoted to topics in Technology and the Natural Sciences.
The current programmes are available from the talks.cam service. There is also an archive of past programmes from years predating the talks.cam service.
On most Wednesdays and Fridays a formal dinner is served.
Bookings are made through Upay, available in an app or desktop version. Please follow the instructions in the information book to reguster. Alumni should contact the Development Office who may make bookings on your behalf.
In addition to yourself, you are permitted to book places for up to three guests using the online booking system (except on especially busy evenings such as Burns Night or the Christmas Formal Halls, when only one guest is permitted); however if you wish to bring additional guests, owing to family or special guests visiting, please apply to the Catering Manager at email@example.com for permission.
Full names of all guests must be completed in the online booking system. Any dietary requirements must also be added to your online booking – the Kitchens work from this list and it is the member’s responsibility to ensure the booking has been made correctly. Please note that you cannot bring your own wine to Formal Halls. Wine must be purchased through the Upay account at the time of booking.
Wednesday Formal Halls usually take place in the Richard King Room for a maximum of 30 guests; on Fridays they are held in the Dining Hall for a maximum of 120 guests. A drinks reception will be held from 7.00pm with dinner at 7.30pm. The dinner will be announced by the sound of the College gong and diners will following the senior member present to the dining area. Diners must remain standing by their seat until the College Grace as been said. Diners may then be seated.
You may cancel or amend your booking any time up to 2.00pm on the day before your meal is booked in for. After that time your payment will not normally be refunded.
Formal Hall Etiquette
By definition, Formal Halls are formal meals often used for the entertainment of special College guests. As such they are governed by certain guidelines, customs, and rules set out to ensure all college members enjoy the occasion. Failure to observe these guidelines, customs, and rules may result in the individual(s) being asked to leave the Dinner.
The College member is responsible for hosting their guests and for their behaviour, for introducing them to the Master or Presiding Fellow, for ensuring that they are aware of the dress code, informing them of the customs and procedures, and for guiding them through the evening. Therefore you are not permitted to ask other college members to book guests into Formal Hall on your behalf.
All guests attending Formal Hall must be accompanied by the host who made the booking. Any guest who is not so accompanied will not be allowed to dine.
Diners should arrive in good time for the pre-dinner reception. At 7.30pm the College Gong will announce dinner, the Master or senior member and their guests will enter the Dining Hall first followed by the rest of the diners. Members and their guests should not delay in moving into Hall once called.
On being called to table, diners remain standing behind their seat; the gong will be sounded and once those present are silent, The Master (or deputy) will give The College Grace. At the end of the meal, the gong will again sound and all diners stand for Grace and during The Master’s (or Deputy's) departure. Members and their guests should then follow on.
Diners should leave the Hall reasonably quickly after the gong has sounded and make their way to the relevant area; this allows the catering staff to clear the Hall. Coffee and port (to purchase) will be availblein a pot-dinner reception room.
As these dinners are more formal than normal meals, it is expected that members and guests will remain seated throughout the meal; moving around the tables particularly during service creates a safety problem for the staff and other diners. It is also not usual to leave the table during the meal unless a member or guest feels unwell. If you do need to leave at any point, you should exit the room, and return if recovered, as discretely as possible. Please note that this dispensation is not intended to be used for taking cigarette breaks.
The use of electronic equiment is not allowed in the Hall at any time. Please ensure that your and your guests' mobile phones are switched off before entering the Hall. Conversation should be kept at a reasonable level, so avoiding the need for anyone to shout.
Photos may be taken after the Master or her Deputy has left the table at the conclusion of dinner. Diners are expected to show respect for guests, other diners and staff. The Butler on duty has been instructed to ask any member or guests exhibiting unsociable or unacceptable behaviour to leave the room.
Formal Hall Dress Code
There is a dress code at all formal dinners defined without reference to gender identity or expression. At Formal Halls and Supervisors' Evenings this is a lounge suit/jacket with a tie or appropriate equivalent attire. College Members, and guests who are members of the University, are encouraged to wear gowns. Persons wearing a shirt without a jacket and tie, or appearing in jeans, training shoes, beach footwear, and/or hats or caps, will be refused entry. If you are unsure of the requirements – please consult the Butler before the event.
Formal Hall bookings
Please read the Formal Hall Etiquette before making any Formal Hall bookings. Please be aware that all guest names must be completed for the booking to be made. Failure to do so may result in no admittance on the night.
Once you have registered, you may then purchase Formal Hall tickets as follows:
· Choose the date of the Formal Hall you wish to book,
· Choose the number of tickets you wish to purchase,
· Enter your guests’ names,
· Click on ‘Event Options’ to choose your ticket type and tick your ticket option, please ensure you purchase the correct ticket for your guests, student statuses will be verified before admittance to the dinner.
Make your wine or drink choices
· Click on ‘Confirm and Pay’,
· Please at this stage add any dietary requirements e.g 1 x vegetarian meal, 1 guest has a gluten and nut allergy,
· Click on ‘Place Booking’,
· Confirm payment with cashless card.
· You will be emailed confirmation of your booking. If you have not received a confirmation email, the booking has not been completed.
· Cancellations or amendments must be done via Upay and before 2.00pm the day before the date of the booking
You will now be able to view your current statement on-line or though the apps.
Guest Nights are special occasions to which College Members and students are able to invite non-College members in to dine and are normally held once a term. Dates for Guest Nights can be found on the College Calendar.
At Guest Nights a tasting menu is served. As this is a special formal occasion, the dress for a gentleman at a Guest Night is a dinner jacket/black tie (or dark suit with a tie), with the appropriate equivalent for ladies. College members are expected to wear academic gowns.
Bookings for Guest Nights are administered by the Catering Department (firstname.lastname@example.org)
These are held periodically, in the Michaelmas, Lent and (if required) Easter Terms. Groups of supervisors are invited to join their students, and others, for dinner; afterwards coffee, wines and dessert are served in the Richard King Room. Bookings for Supervisors’ Evenings are administered by the Deanery (email@example.com)
Catering Department payments (Upay registration)
Upay is an online booking system where you will be able to purchase your Formal Hall tickets. You will need to register an account before you are able to make a booking.
Note that this facility is available to current Darwin members only. If you are an alumnus of the College please contact the Development Office to be booked into Formal Hall.
Please note that in order to set up an account you will need the Affiliate ID along with your unique user ID
The Affiliate ID is: DARWINKITCHENS
If you do not know the user ID, please refer to your last statement which will have your account details on it.
The UpayChilli website is mobile-friendly but you can also download a mobile app, but note that to have it work with Raven you should first:
• Download the appropiate the app, do not register yet.
• Go to the UpayChilli website (http://www.darwin.cam.ac.uk/upay) in your mobile browser, Raven authenticate and then launch the app for the first time using the "Load UpayChilli App" button resulting page. The app will then be linked to your Raven credentials for future use.
For further information on UpayChilli please refer to the Upay User Guide & FAQ available online at
Then follow the details below:
- Once these details have been obtained, click on the link above for UpayChilli;
- You will be asked to confirm a Raven affiliate terms and conditions, please confirm;
- Click 'Yes or No' to remain logged in on the device you are registering from;
- Click 'Return to Log In';
- Click ' Register My UpayChilli Account';
- In the next page, you will be prompted to enter the Affiliate ID 'DARWINKITCHENS' ;
- You will then be asked for your user id, please use the account code from your Catering Meals Statement
- You will the be asked for your email address - please use your @cam.ac.uk address
Once you have completed these steps an email will be sent to you confirming your user account details.
You must register your bicycle with the College (either via the Porter’s Lodge or the Bursary) so that is it not removed from the premises and disposed of. Bicycles racks are available in the area under the Dining Hall, in front of the Rayne Building or near the Old Granary/Study Centre. There is also a bicycle shed in the basement of the Old Granary. Bicycles left elsewhere on College grounds will be removed by the Maintenance team or Porters. Please do not take bicycles into the College gardens, or cycle in College grounds. If you are in accommodation such as Newnham Terrace which has bicycle racks in the front gardens, please use them. Bicycles must not be kept in your rooms or brought inside any College properties.
Please note that the College insurance does not cover bicycles; it is the responsibility of member to have them adequately insured. Since theft of bicycles is common in Cambridge, it is advisable not only to mark them but also to buy - and use - a very strong lock. Take care, cycling in Cambridge can be dangerous. You are urged to wear a cycle helmet and other safety equipment (i.e. reflective belt or jacket), and to make sure your cycle is in good repair, with functioning front & back lights. Cycling at night without lights is against the law and can incur a fine if you are stopped by the Police.
There are several bike shops in Cambridge and the DCSA will be happy to advise on where to purchase either a new or second hand bike.
The use of skateboards, scooters or rollerblades is not permitted within College grounds.
Darwin has very few parking spaces available for student use (currently four at Frank Young House). Preference for these will be given to those with a disability or a need to commute on a daily basis to their school/work placements. If you would like to have your name put on the waiting list then please email the Deanery Office (firstname.lastname@example.org) as soon as possible.
Students over the age of 24 (MA status) do not require a licence but students under this age are only permitted to keep a car in Cambridge if their vehicle is licenced with the Senior Proctor. Full details including the on-line application can be found at: https://www.proctors.cam.ac.uk/motor-control
Members are reminded, however, that a licence will not be issued unless the applicant has arranged to garage the car in an approved place. Public car parks and the streets, for example, are not approved places.
The car park under the Dining Hall is entirely reserved for those people whose duties bring them frequently into and out of College, i.e. College Officers and members of staff, and access must be kept clear at all times.
The College has four parking spaces at Frank Young House which can sometimes be allocated to students. Priority for these will be given to those who need a car to enable them to carry out their research/coursework.
Cambridge Universal Bus - The University bus for all
The Universal bus service links Eddington with West Cambridge, the City Centre, the railway station and the Cambridge Biomedical Campus (Addenbrooke's Hospital).
This service runs every 15 Minutes Monday to Friday, every 20 minutes on Saturdays and every 30 minutes on Sundays. The nearest stop to the College is just outside the Study Centre (toward West Cambridge) and just opposite outside Queen's College if you are heading into town or the Bio-medical campus.
For further information, including a full timetable please go to: https://www.environment.admin.cam.ac.uk/travel/travel-bus
Further information on The Cambridge Green Challenge and sustainability can also be found on this page.
Alumni and Development Office
The Alumni and Development Office is the primary contact point for all alumni of the College. The Office organises regular events for alumni, including reunion dinners, drinks receptions, and the annual Old Darwinians’ Garden Party. It publishes The Darwinian, specifically for alumni, which is mailed to all Old Darwinian’s across the world. An e-bulletin with news from the College is also sent periodically .
The Darwin College Society was set up in 1987 to encourage Old Darwinians to maintain contact with the College and with each other. Membership of the Society is free and automatic for all former graduate members, former Fellows and members of the Governing Body. The Society is run by a committee of Old Darwinians and Fellows, and assists the College Alumni and Development Office in its work.
See further Alumni and Supporters
The College tie, scarf, and other apparel, cuff links, College shield, teddybears and other items can be purchased from Messrs Ryder & Amies, online here or at their shop at 21 King's Parade, Cambridge. The DCSA, the Development Office, and the Porters' Lodge also offer a small selection of similar items for purchase.
The College Photograph is usually taken on a Friday lunchtime in October. Once the date has been decided it will be advertised around the College and in the DCSA What’s Up email newsletter. All members are invited to take part in College photograph. Copies of the photograph can be purchased from the Bursary.
Cambridge University Careers Service
The Careers Service provides careers advice and information to all current University of Cambridge undergraduates, postgraduates, postdocs and alumni. They are impartial and can work with you from day one to explore options, connect with employers and navigate the complex job market – saving you time and maximising your employability prospects.
The services offered include one-to-one guidance consultations; major careers events each year; an extensive programme of briefings and skill sessions; coordinated employer presentations; CV and application resources; and a job vacancies database.
Register and access a wealth of resources at www.careers.cam.ac.uk
Wolfson - Darwin's Sister College in Oxford
Like most Cambridge Colleges, Darwin is twinned with a sister College at Oxford, Wolfson, which is also a Graduate College. There is an annual Sports' Day held in the Lent term which is organised by the DCSA Sports Officer, where one College hosts the other in alternate years. In addition, each College offers hospitality and accommodation to visitors from its sister College.