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The following page provides information for students and their guests. If your query is not answered on this page then please do contact and we will endeavour to assist you further with this.


If you are graduating in person you may invite guests to attend the ceremony. The Senate-House has limited capacity so admittance is strictly by ticket only, this includes entering the grounds of Senate House. Only two tickets per graduand can be guaranteed. Tickets are issued by your college free of charge and you should contact them directly for your allocation.

If you are going forward for an MA and do not have a college, you will receive your guest tickets directly from the Student Registry.

Frequently asked questions

Do my guests need a ticket to get into Senate-House?

Yes. All guests require a ticket to get into Senate House and/or the Senate House grounds, this includes children and babies in prams. This is to ensure that the rules around numbers of people in the venue is adhered to.

We ask that all guests have their tickets in their hand whilst queuing or waiting as opposed to keeping them all in one envelope. This means that people can be easily spotted if they are in the wrong queue and that no-one gets left behind etc.

I am graduating in person. How many tickets can I have for my guests?

The Senate House has limited capacity and therefore strict health and safety rules around numbers are enforced. Graduands are only guaranted two tickets each.

Please contact your College directly for further information on ticket allocation and what is specifically available to you.

Is there a fee for tickets?

Tickets for the Senate House are free of charge.

If tickets are required for other events that your College might be hosting on the day of the ceremony then these may have a fee so please liaise with them directly for this information.

Where do I collect tickets from?

Your ticket allocation is issued by your College and you should contact them directly to make arrangements for the collection of these. Please note that if your guests do not have tickets then they will be unable to enter the Senate House.

I need extra tickets. How can I get these?

The Senate House has limited capacity and as such additional tickets cannot be guaranteed or assumed to be available.

If you find that you would like additional tickets then you will need to contact your College directly. If numbers permit then you may be allocated the additional tickets but this is in no way guaranteed. You should plan your ceremony on the assumption that you will only be able to have two tickets.

Members of the University

Members of the Senate may attend graduation ceremonies without tickets, but only if space is available on the day. This concession does not apply to the Honorary Degree Congregation.

I’m a member of the University. Do I need a ticket to attend?

No. If you are a member of the Senate then you can attend a graduation ceremony without a ticket. However, this is very much subject to available space on the day – you are not guaranteed entry. This concession does not apply to the Honorary Degree Congregation.

All members of the University must wear their gowns at ceremonies in the Senate-House. Only Cambridge academic dress is worn, unless it is a Scarlet Day. Caps are optional and are only worn inside the House by officers taking part in the ceremony. At most congregation ceremonies only graduands and official participants are required to wear hoods.

Arrangements on the day

As Cambridge is a collegiate university, graduands are presented alongside other members of their college rather than members of their faculty or department. Guests are asked to remain seated until the end of the session that they are admitted to.

There will be University Constables in attendance to support both guests and graduands inside the Senate-House and Senate-House Yard. The Constables are easily identifiable by their top hats and tailcoats and will be happy to help. If guests need assistance at any time they should approach the nearest Constable.

Can guests take photographs inside Senate-House?

No. Photography is not permitted inside the Senate-House and mobile phones/pagers must be switched off or muted. Professional photographers hired by graduands are not allowed in the grounds of Senate House.

Are there toilets at the venue?

Yes. Please ask a Constable on the day of the ceremony for directions to the facilities. For those who require disabled facilities it will also be necessary to speak to a Constable for access.

Can children attend a ceremony?

Yes. Children are of course welcome at the ceremony – please ensure that they are treated as guests and that a ticket is allocated to them (this applies even if they are in a pram). Prams and pushchairs are allowed inside the Senate House.

Are there any bag restrictions?

Yes. To ensure that your visit to the University is as safe as possible, enhanced security procedures are in place. Rucksacks, holdalls, shopping bags or bags larger than 35cm x 25cm are not permitted in the Senate House or surrounding grounds. If you bring larger bags then you will be asked to make alternative arrangements for their storage or you may be denied entry to the event.

If you need to keep your bag with you, for instance on medical grounds, you must seek assistance from a Constable who will need to check the contents prior to your entry to the Senate House.

Disabled Access

Those using wheelchairs can access the Senate-House via the East Door where there is a ramp.

What are the disabled access arrangements?

Those using wheelchairs or with poor mobility should speak to a Constable at the gate of Senate House in the first instance on the day and they can then be directed to the queue for the ramp located at the East Door. It is not necessary for guests using wheelchairs to arrive especially early, however those keen to be seated near other guests should arrive in good time. At General Admission (June) this reserved area only allows for one carer guest with each wheelchair user, this is due to very limited space at these busy ceremonies. Other guests must join their respective queue depending on their ticket (Floor or Gallery as applicable).

The Senate House is on a ground floor with an upper gallery; the gallery can only be accessed by stairs. Please advise your College at the time of booking your graduation if a guest in your party has a disability which will require them to have a ground floor seat or wheelchair space reserved.

For any enquires relating to disabled access and special arrangements, please contact the University Marshal's Office.


Information about getting to Cambridge, along with links to the online version of the University map, are available in our visitor section.

Where is the Senate House?

The Senate House is located on King's Parade, opposite Great St Mary's Church and adjacent to Senate House Passage.

How do I get to Cambridge and the venue?

Information about getting to Cambridge, along with links to the online version of the University map, are available in our visitor section.

Is there any parking nearby?

No. Unfortunately parking is not available at Senate House but the Grand Arcade car park is nearby.

You might be advised to discuss parking further with the College who may have specific arrangements for guests.


Information about hotels and other accommodation in and around Cambridge is available from the Visit Cambridge website.

Unfortunately, the Student Registry is unable to provide assistance with searching for, arranging or providing accommodation. Information about hotels and other accommodation in and around Cambridge is available from the above website. Alternatively you could contact your College to see if they have any suggestions or accommodation availabilities.