Pictured here on the day of its inauguration by Queen Victoria, Royal Holloway College wasn’t the first college for women in Britain, but it was the largest to date. Comprising a 600-bed red-brick campus (‘The Founder’s Building’) on the Mount Lee Estate in Egham, Royal Holloway was entrepreneur Thomas Holloway’s attempt at a grand gesture at once architectural and philanthropic. Indeed, it was first suggested by Holloway’s wife Jane in response to a letter he had published in The Builder magazine asking ‘How best to spend a quarter of a million or more’.
Royal Holloway became part of the University of London in 1900. In 1878, the University of London had been the first university in Britain to admit female students. By 1880 four women had passed their BA examination there. In 1881 two women obtained a Bachelor of Science degree. By 1895 over 10 per cent of graduates at London University were women, but it was only with the incorporation of Royal Holloway in 1900 that the figure suddenly rose to 30 per cent.
- Article by:
- Kathryn Hughes
- Gender and sexuality
From marriage and sexuality to education and rights, Professor Kathryn Hughes looks at attitudes towards gender in 19th-century Britain.
- Article by:
- Liza Picard
In an increasingly complicated world, the chances for an illiterate boy or girl were slim. In light of this, a number of day schools were established. These included the Ragged Schools, Parish Schools and Church Schools.