Kathryn Ferry (NC 1995) and Country Life's John Goodall In Conversation about Newnham's architecture

Basil Champney’s stunning architecture defines Newnham and is loved by all alumnae. But how much do you know about why the buildings look they way they do?

In this 45-minute event, Kathryn Ferry and John Goodall take a virtual tour of the College, discussing the origins of the Queen Anne style and its evolution at Newnham from Old Hall to Peile and everything in between. They will place Newnham’s buildings in their historic context, comparing them with the more formal buildings of Girton and exploring links to London Board Schools and the Arts and Crafts Movement. They will explain why the decorative focus is on the gardens, leaving the street fronts to give but a poor impression of the delights within, and look at how the college has evolved into the twenty-first century by respecting the artistic vision of Champney’s and the college founders.


After completing her PhD on the Victorian architect and designer Owen Jones, KATHRYN FERRY (NC 1995) worked as Senior Architectural Adviser for conservation charity The Victorian Society. She now works as an independent historian, author and lecturer specialising in the culture and built environment of the seaside. Her book Seaside 100: A History of the British Seaside in 100 Objects was published last year. This summer, her new book, The Old Convent, East Grinstead will uncover the social and architectural history of what was the largest Anglican religious house in the country. Kathryn’s article celebrating Newnham’s architecture was published in Country Life magazine on 28 April 2021.

JOHN GOODALL is a distinguished architectural writer and historian, with a particular skill for bringing architectural history to a wider audience. He was a researcher and historian at English Heritage, where he developed their new guidebook series. He is currently  the architectural editor of Country Life magazine, responsible for writing and commissioning their celebrated series of architectural features. His most recent book is Parish Church Treasures, in which he explores the remarkable artistic and architectural treasures in parish churches, and reveals what they tell us about local life up and down the country.

Don’t miss the chance to take a moment to enjoy a short tour of Newnham’s newest building – the Dorothy Garrod building, here.