Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge

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Fitzwilliam College

Established: 1869

University: University of Cambridge

Address: Storey's Way, Cambridge, CB3 ODG

Telephone: +44 1223 332000


Student Union/JCR website:

Graduate/MCR website: no

Admittance: Undergraduates and postgraduates


Alternative Prospectus

The Fitz JCR have material for prospective students, including an alternative prospectus (soon-to-be-updated), on its website:

Student Statistics

  • Total Undergraduates in 2007-8 = 496 (304 men + 192 women)
  • Total Undergraduates in 2006-7 = 502 (300 men + 202 women)
  • Students admitted to their current course in Oct 07: 157 (100 men + 57 women)
  • Students admitted to their current course in Oct 06: 166 (102 men + 64 women)

Source: The Reporter Special Issue: Student Numbers 07-08

Fitzwilliam Application Statistics See College applications and admissions statistics

Fitzwilliam Application Statistics per subject See Appplication Statistics

The proportion of state school to private school backgrounds at Fitzwilliam is approxiamtely 60:40 (58% of acceptances in 2007 and 62% in 2006 were from state school students (source)).


Fitzwilliam is considered to be one of the 'far away' colleges. However this is 'far away' to Cambridge standards. In fact, everything is within easy reach on bike. In fact, for some subjects such as maths or computer science, it's one of the nearest colleges to your faculty, and it's probably about the same distance from the Sidgwick site as most of the town colleges.

  • Next door to Murray Edwards (used to be called New Hall) and up the road from Churchill.
  • 0.43 miles (about a 10 minute walk) to the Maths Faculty (Centre for Mathematical Sciences) on Wilberforce Road.
  • 0.79 miles to the West Cambridge Site (with the Cavendish Physics Laboratory and the Computer Laboratory)
  • 1.14 miles (about a 20 minute walk) to the Sidgwick site (where most of the arts departments are)
  • 1.01 miles north west from Market Square (the town centre)
  • 1.25 miles to the Downing site (Geography, Arch and Anth, Psychology, Biochemistry) and the New Museums Site
  • 2.10 miles from the Chemistry department on Lensfield Road
  • 2.05 miles (about a 45 minute walk) from the railway station.

(All distances measured on gmaps pedometer)

Bus stops: The Uni 4 stops on Madingley Road every 20 minutes. This goes past the Sidgwick Site on West Road, through Silver Street and Trumpington Road in the city centre to Addenbrookes Hospital. There is also a bus stop on Huntingdon Road where you can catch busses to the bus station on Drummer Street in the city centre.

College Map

See more -


Fitz has 408 rooms on the main college site and 167 rooms in college-owned houses. College gives accommodation to all undergraduates meaning that you avoid the higher prices of renting privately.

First years are housed on the main site. In terms of size, first years' rooms at Fitz are at the lower end of Cambridge's room standards. However, they are clean and warm (the heating system has recently been repaired). Half of the fresher rooms have been recently renovated (in the summers of 2015 and 2016) and all rooms have showers in them - you have to say whether you want to pay (slightly) extra for the newly refurbished rooms shortly before arriving at Fitzwilliam. Apart from this, rooms are allocated to first years at random so you will be surrounded by people doing all sorts of different subjects. Most of the first year accommodation is in Tree Court which is good because everybody really gets to know one another. A, B, C, E and F staircases (all in Tree Court) and also M staircase (a 2 minute walk away in the next lawn over, Fellows' Court) are for freshers only. All rooms have wash basins, showers and internet access. Most corridors are mixed, except for a few (you can specify separated corridor if you want). All rooms have access to a small shared kitchen (gyp rooms) for self-catering (though most students use the Buttery for meals). You'll only find out what room you've been given when you arrive on the first Saturday.

Those students who have lived in the older accommodation recognised that the rooms are at the "lower end" of Cambridge's room sizes/standards, but they're not bad rooms and have everything you need as a first year - and this is reflected in the price you pay compared to other colleges. The newly renovated rooms are very well-finished and have much larger communal/gyp spaces.

Second and third years are allocated rooms by ballot. The rooms are generally bigger (and a lot nicer, since those who live in College live in the newer Courts (e.g. Gatehouse Court, Wilson Court (image), New Court)) than the first year rooms. Second years are also given the opportunity to live out-of-site in college-owned houses, and around half of second years do this. All third years then return to live on the college site.

There's plenty of storage space in the rooms (even if they are quite small), under beds and in cupboards/the wardrobe. All rooms have a chest-of-draws-cum-desk, a wardrobe and a lamp.

Bedders (cleaners) clean the communal spaces (toilets/bath/gyp) daily during weekdays and bedrooms once weekly, including your shower and sink basins, so you don't need things to clean them. You don't need to buy/bring toilet roll either.

More examples of rooms -


There's an iron in the laundry room for use by students. Washing machines, which last 37 minutes, and dryers, which last 10 minutes, are token operated (can be bought from the bar/cafe or the Porters' Lodge and cost £1.50 for the washing machine 40p for the drying machine). Students often find they need 2 or 3 drying tokens for the load to be fully dry. Alternatively many students bring a clothes horse/rack.


When you arrive at college, you'll be given a CamCard which is your access card to your department, the UL and also around Fitz. You can also use it as a credit card to make purchases in the bar, cafe and "buttery".

Buttery: The buttery serves lunch between 12:00-1:30pm and dinner between 6:00-7:00pm during term time (times are shorted out-of-term). Most students tend to eat here at least once a day.

Formal Hall: Formal hall is a 3 course, sit-down meal where you are served by waiters. You can attend as many formals as you want. There are special formals throughout the year (themed - known as superhalls where everyone can go in costume - or subject formals organised by your DoS) and standard formals that people organise going to for their birthday or for other events. You buy a ticket a few days in advance and then you can just turn up. You can also buy tickets for friends at other colleges (limit varying on type of hall you book onto). Tickets can be bought online (the same place that you can find your purchase history and outstanding payments). Students at Fitz tend to go to around 3 per term.

You wear a gown to formal hall, but you can get away with just a shirt for most formals.

Buttery menus can be found on the homepage of the JCR website:

Social Spaces

If you want to invite people for meals, you can use the Stretton Room which has a bigger kitchen than the ones in the corridors. Otherwise, there's the Society Room where you can relax with a newspaper or check your email and the JMA with pool table, table football and sky TV. In summer you'll be able to take full advantage of the beautiful gardens (and all the squirrels) which not that many people out of college know about. Fitz is off the tourist route so it's a very peaceful college where students can go about their activities undisturbed.

Library and Computing

The Olisa Library (2010) has 4 floors and 40,000 books as well as wired and wireless IT network connections.

There are undergraduate and graduate computing rooms plus computers in the Cyber Cafe and Societies Room. College rooms have broadband internet. The college charges students £35 a term for this (?) plus £0.33 per GB for all traffic between the student's computer and computers outside the Cambridge Network. There are Student Computer Officers who you can contact if you run into any computing problems.

A student says: We don't get an 'allowance' at Fitz, but we do get an automated warning when we get to 1GB in 24 hours as a 'reminder', and get charged extra on our bills for anything in addition to that. To all intents and purposes bandwidth at Fitz is unlimited, but it can get costly.

Another student says: To clarify, there is no 'free' 1GB. It is 33p per GB no discussioand if you reach 1GB in 24 hours you get a reminder. It doesn't really mean anything (other than letting you know) and I've seen one person with a reminder for every single day of term with no action taken against them.

Check out the library links here -

Academic Performance

Fitzwilliam's ranking in the Tompkins Table (which ranks 29 colleges by their Tripos exam results): 23rd (2016), 20th (2015), 19th (2014), 20th (2013), 19th (2012).

The Tutors and Fellows at Fitzwilliam pride themselves on providing an environment which is both beneficial for students' welfare and also allows them to thrive in the difficult Cambridge courses. As such, it is often believed Fitz students don't tend to be as 'academically pushed' by their Directors of Studies as other more central colleges - however, excellent performances are regularly achieved by students.


There are plenty of people on hand if you have a problem or want a chat.

  • JCR Male and Female Welfare Officers
  • Your tutor (all students are assigned a tutor, a member of the academic staff who is not in your subject department, who is responsible for their welfare)
  • Your Director of Studies (if the problem is academic)
  • The College Chaplain (she is lovely!)
  • The College Nurse
  • University services such as the University Counselling Service or Nightline (used to be known as Linkline).

Further links for welfare and support can be found here:


It's a fairly modern college with lovely gardens. It has a bit of a high school feel to it because of the way it looks but it is very friendly. Also feels a bit like it's in the countryside, or a small town. The people have a reputation for being fun loving and friendly.


  • Porters' Lodge (image)
  • Buttery (canteen) and Hall (image 1image 2)
  • The newest library in Cambridge - the Olisa Library - with approximately 40,000 books (image 1image 2) opened in 2010. Also includes printer, photocopier and two computer rooms (as well as several computers around the library itself).
  • College bar/cafe - 4 draught taps (usally 1 cider, 2 lagers, and 1 bitter), serves coffee & snacks (e.g. paninis) during the day. Cafe during the day and a bar during the evening/night.
  • The JCR room (for undergraduates) with projector, pool table, table football table, board games.
  • TV Room (properly known as the De Smith Room) with Sky TV (including Sports), Wii and DVD/VCR player.
  • MCR (for graduates) with kitchen, a large patio, cable television, newspapers and magazines, hi-fi equipment, boardgames and a barbecue. In the Grove.
  • Undergraduate Computer room with 12 PCs, 1 Mac, laser printer and scanner.
  • Graduate Computer room with 6 PCs and 1 Mac and laser printer.
  • 3 music practice rooms (2 with upright pianos and one a harpsichord and a harmonium)
  • 1 groups music practice room with an upright piano and an electric piano
  • 1 band room with drum kit
  • Auditorium (250 seats) for plays and public concerts with a Steinway model B grand piano which can be used by advanced pianists (more information) (image)
  • College Chapel with a Bechstein grand piano and organ which can be used by advanced musicians (image1image 2image 3)
  • Laundry
  • Multi-gym (recently refurbished and being constantly added-to) with:
    • erg
    • bike
    • cross-trainer
    • treadmill
    • some dumbbells (only up to 25kg)
    • an assortment of resistance machines - chest press, rower, leg press, shoulder press etc.
  • 3 Squash Courts
  • 1 Badminton court
  • Dark Room
  • Playing Fields and Tennis Courts near the college site (image 1,image 2)
  • Gardens (image 1image 2Image 3image 4image 5image 6)
  • Bike racks (image)
  • New boathouse by the river with
    • 8 ergs
    • bench
    • squat rack
    • table for bent over row
    • loads of weights.


Hockey is one of the most active sports teams at Fitz, is very social and also does very well - particularly the Women's Hockey. In the last several years, Fitz has been in the first league, won a tournament against Oxford and Durham and other Cambridge colleges.

There is also a strong Boat Club (rowing) at Fitz, with a newly built Boat House on the river (prime position!), with 4 teams regularly being pitched for all levels.

Other sports such as: football (3 teams), cricket, swimming and badminton (the Auditorium doubles as a court when the chairs are collapsed) are also represented at Fitz.

A much bigger list of sports and societies at Fitz can be found on the College and JCR websites.

Fitz was declared the 7th sportiest Cambridge College in Michaelmas 2009 by The Tab. See The Tab article: The College Cup revealed


Past Productions:

  • Fri 27th - Sun 29th Nov 2009, The Critic by Richard Brindsley Sheridan, Fitzwilliam Auditorium
  • Mon 15th Jun 2009, Matinees 2pm, Tue 16th - Wed 17th Jun 2009, The History Boys by Alan Bennet, The Grove Lawn, Fitzwilliam College
  • Sat 14th - Mon 16th Mar 2009, Richard III by William Shakespeare, Fitzwilliam Auditorium
  • Thu 28th Feb - Sat 1st Mar 2008, Sweet Charity by Neil Simon, Fitzwilliam Auditorium
  • Thu 2nd - Sat 18th Aug 2007, Sweeney Todd by Stephen Sondheim and Hugh Wheeler, Ctoo, Edinburgh
  • Tue 7th - Sat 11th Mar 2006, Sweeney Todd by Stephen Sondheim and Hugh Wheeler, Fitzwilliam Auditorium
  • Thu 10th - Sat 12th Mar 2005, Jesus Christ Superstar by Andrew Lloyd Webber (FitzTheatre & Fitzwilliam Music Society), Fitzwilliam Autitorium.

Student-eye view

Look up Fitzwilliam in the CUSU Alternative Prospectus

A link to a video made by a student at Fitz about his time here:




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