Student accommodation
Undergraduates sitting in the Fellows' Garden
Undergraduates in the Dining Hall

Welcome to Sidney Sussex

A message from the Master

Many of you will have seen the stories in the news regarding the significant changes being made to teaching and learning at Cambridge in 2020-21. As social distancing is likely to remain in place in some form for a significant part of the next academic year, the University has made the difficult decision to suspend mass lectures for the whole year. Instead lectures will be made available online. Small group teaching, tutorials, seminars and individual tuition, which is at the heart of Cambridge’s educational provision, will continue in person as much as possible. The University’s plans will be kept under regular review and their objective is to restore the full teaching programme as soon as possible. We will, of course, do our very best to keep you updated with any further developments in relation to this issue or any other matters concerning to the challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic.

Sidney has commenced planning for the most effective restoration of on-site activity from October 2020, as well as the further development of the virtual College community which has emerged during lockdown. We will continue to review any plans in accordance with Government and medical advice and communicate these to you as soon as possible. Our first and foremost priority during this uncertain time will always be protecting the health, wellbeing and safety of our students, Fellows and staff, and to that end, Sidney remains closed to visitors and our staff are continuing to work from home wherever possible.

The College has done its upmost to ensure that students still in residence have had the support they need. With Easter Term now underway, and teaching and assessment having moved online, it is enormously encouraging to see how all our students, Fellows and staff have adapted to these difficult circumstances with their customary good humour, creativity and dedication.

I would like to wish all our students taking their exams in these trying conditions the very best of luck. I would also once again like to thank everyone who has worked so hard to keep College operations running within the constraints of these challenging circumstances.

Next year marks 425 years since the College was established by Lady Frances Sidney. We have weathered difficult times before and I remain confident we will do so again, with the enthusiasm of our students, the commitment of our Fellows and staff, and the support of our alumni and friends.

My sincere thanks to you all for your patience, kindness and generosity. I hope you and your loved ones are safe and well, and that we will be able to return to a sense of normality in the not too distant future.

Professor Richard Penty FREng


We regret that the College will be closed to all guests until further notice. Scheduled events are currently under review. Please contact the event organiser for more information.

The College was founded on St Valentine’s Day in 1596 by legacy of Lady Frances Sidney, Countess of Sussex. Sidney Sussex College is renowned across the University and Cambridge Colleges for its warm community spirit, fantastic city centre location, and unpretentious and friendly atmosphere.