Selwyn College


Selwyn College

Photo by Chris Huang.

About Selwyn College

Selwyn College was established in 1882 at Cambridge University. The Selwyn Memorial Committee founded the college to remember the Reverend George Selwyn, who rowed on the varsity team at Cambridge. He also served as the Bishop of New Zealand and Lichfield during his life.

The student atmosphere at Selwyn fosters a sense of inclusion and offers several societies for members to participate in. One, the Hermes Club, helps athletes at the college gain support for their sport. The club offers financial grants and lobbies for support from the college.

Notable alumni of Selwyn College include actor Hugh Laurie and Nigel Newton, the founder of Bloomsbury Publishing.

The Selwyn Family Crest

In addition to being the college’s namesake, the Selwyn family’s crest also is the official Selwyn College coat of arms. It incorporates the arms of the Selwyn family in addition to the Diocese of Lichfield.

Amongst college coat of arms traditions, the Selwyn College coat of arms is rather untraditional. It merges two hard metals – gold and silver – and is unique because it is also loosely based on a hardwood Maori staff (natives of New England).

The History of Selwyn College

Selwyn originally opened with the intent of educating the sons of clergymen in the Christian faith and accepted only those baptized. When Arthur Lyttelton, the college’s first master, approached the university about officially accepting the institution, many questioned the consideration because all other colleges decreed students must come from the Church of England, a requirement not listed for Selwyn.

However, Lyttelton won them over as a sensible and godly man. Now, the university opens its doors to both male and female scholars wishing to study.

In an effort to make religious and academic education available to all, Selwyn College initially offered a low-rate price. At the time of its establishment, most could not afford education and the founders wished to open education to the poorer community. That friendly, welcoming nature still exists in the college’s community today.

Selwyn College Grounds & Architecture

Selwyn’s Old Court is built in the Victorian Late Perpendicular Gothic Revival style with red brick offering a bold presence on the campus. It boasts seven staircases, Master’s Lodge, a kitchen, music practice rooms, Chapel, a hall, and archives.

Selwyn College Contact & Location

Grange Road, Cambridge CB3 9DQ
Tel: +44 1223 335846
Fax: +44 1223 335837

[pw_map address=”Grange Road, Cambridge”] is not affiliated with the University of Cambridge.