The Grove

History of the Grove


The Grove is Fitzwilliam’s central feature. Built in 1813 its architecture contrasts harmoniously with the more modern buildings surrounding it. Originally the home of the architect who built it, it was later the home of Charles Darwin’s widow Emma, who was born into the prestigious porcelain manufacturing family Wedgewood. Later it became the home of the Armstrong family. Their crest can be seen along side the Fitz shield in the lobby, the stair hall of which includes original William Morris wallpaper. Other rooms house the SCR, the Master’s dining room and various college offices.


The Grove is in the centre of the college, and MCR life revolves around the MCR common rooms inside (also called the MCR).

The MCR rooms have recently been expanded and refurbished. From a comfortable place to study to a cosy area where you can take a break and spend time with your friends (and maybe even throw a small party), the new MCR rooms provide an excellent environment for our students to fully enjoy the graduate experience in Cambridge.

The two original rooms are the reading room, with its beautiful bay window seating area perfect to study a bit or read a paper, and the back parlour, with comfortable sofas, photo wall, complete collection of boardgames, TV with Netflix and Prime, it is perfect for a relaxing board game or movie night. During the evening it is the perfect place to finish the day (watch out for occasional movie nights). During the day many find it a good place to work or have academic discussions. For those looking for a more quiet space to fully concentrate, we also have two study rooms upstairs (the Blue and Green room). Comfortable and nicely decorated, these rooms feel like you are completely somewhere else – excellent for working to meet looming deadlines, or just to fully concentrate on your research.

At the heart of the MCR there’s also a large garden room with a kitchenette/bar. Whether grabbing some tea or an afternoon snack, this area is excellent for mingling and chilling whilst enjoying the great views of the gardens. The large glass doors in this area also open onto the patio – great for a summer barbecue!

These rooms all come together to form a lively hub for our graduate students. The MCR Committee also organises multiple events here: welfare tea and cake, pre and post-Formal dinner drinks, academic three-minute thesis competitions, a party – there’s always something to look forward to! Take a look inside!

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