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St Catherine's College, Cambridge


Features of St Catherine's College include lawns, paths and a walled garden.

The original buildings formed a court with an entrance from Queens' Lane, and to the south were three small square gardens with a tree in each corner. By 1680, this court had been re-built with no central lawn and a narrow medieval passage connected the college to Trumpington Street. This is shown on the Loggan map of 1688.

Custance's map of 1798 shows Principal Court open ended to the east, with a central lawn set back from but looking through a double row of trees this gap along the street frontage is contained by new buildings. The fine gateposts set back from the street with iron gates and railings date from 1779. The college has changed its entrance, from the west to the east of Principal Court. The three small gardens to the south still remain.

The Ordnance Survey map of 1888 shows Principal Court with wide paths around the central lawn and two rows of trees between the iron railings; and Trumpington Street with posts at the back edge of the pavement. The three small gardens have changed to become the Fellows' garden with one lawn banked towards a shrubbery. At the corner of Queen's Lane and Silver Street is a new Master's garden, with a central lawn edged with a path and two borders of trees and shrubs to the south.

Today (2008) the entrance to the college has been modified, Woodlark and Hobson's Buildings have both narrowed the space along Trumpington Street. A central path leads to the main gates, flanked either side by lawns each with a fastigiate beech. The posts along the pavement have been replaced by stone posts with chains. Immediately behind the gate are formal beds of shrubs, edged with low box hedges. Also, Sherlock Court and Chapel Court have recently been landscaped, both have circular beds filled with plants. Some fine cedars appear over the Master's garden wall.

Visitor Access, Directions & Contacts

St. Catherine's College was founded in 1473 by the then Provost of King's College, Robert Woodlarke.

Features & Designations


  • Garden Wall
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  • Path
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  • Lawn
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Key Information





Principal Building






  • Cambridgeshire Gardens Trust