The Senate House, Cambridge


Great British Buildings

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The Senate House is the parliament building of Cambridge University. This baroque building, completed in 1730, is the ceremonial centre of Cambridge University where degrees are awarded and important decisions put to a ballot. Situated in the centre of the city between King’s and Gonville and Caius Colleges, it was designed by architect James Gibbs. It is based, to an unclear extent, on designs by the gentleman-architect Sir James Burrough, and built in 1722–1730 by Gibbs in a neo-classical style using Portland stone. The ceremony to lay the first stone was performed by Thomas Crosse, then Vice-Chancellor, on 22 June 1722. The site was previously used for houses, which were purchased by an Act of Parliament of 11 June 1720. It was officially opened in July 1730, although the western end was not completed until 1768. The Senate House was originally intended to be one side of a quadrangle; however the rest of the structure was never completed. It forms part of the Old Schools Site. It is a Grade I listed building.

Additional information

Weight 0.0311 kg
Dimensions 48.9 × 31.7 cm