College looks local for Christmas tree

Head Gardener Oscar Holgate tells us a little bit about this year's Christmas tree in the Dining Hall.

Christmas Tree 2020

The tree that graces the Dining Hall this year is 14-foot/4-metre Nordmann fir. The Nordmann, or Caucasian fir is a indigenous to the mountains south and east of the Black Sea, in Turkey, Georgia and the Russian Caucasus. Our tree was grown at the Elveden Estate which is just up the A11 near Thetford, in Suffolk.

Elveden Hall is a Grade II-listed stately home. The date of the estate's original house's construction is unknown but the estate is known to have been anciently appropriated by Bury St Edmunds Abbey. After the dissolution of the monasteries it was given by Henry VIII to the Duke of Norfolk. It subsequently passed through the ownerships of the Crisp and Tyrell families. The Georgian house at the core of the present house is thought to have been built c. 1760.

The 17,000-acre Estate was once owned by Maharajah Duleep Singh, the last true ruler of the Sikh Empire and owner of the famous Koh-i-Noor diamond, who had been exiled to England after being removed from his kingdom by the British East India Company. The Maharajah purchased the Estate in 1863 with a vision of rebuilding the country house and renovating it in an Italian Style, with the interiors redesigned to resemble the fine Mughal palaces to which he had previously been accustomed.

Maharajah’s group at Elveden Hall, pre 1890
Maharajah with guests at Elveden Hall, pre 1890 

The estate has a long history of farming, and Elveden Hall and Estate played host to a wide range of sporting activities. None however rivalled the Maharajah’s passion for shooting. His shooting parties were popular amongst aristocracy including Prince George, the Duke of Cambridge and Queen Victoria. During his time at Elveden, he was proclaimed the fourth-best shot in England.

After seasons of poor farming in the 1870s, a downturn in the Maharajah’s personal fortunes and political tensions in government, the Maharajah left Elveden and England in 1886. After his death in 1893, his executors sold Elveden Hall in 1894 to Edward Cecil Guinness, and the Guinness family remains the owners of the Estate today. 

What's on

mother and daughter with gas masks

Humanities Society - "Objects, Bodies, and Emotions: How the Gas Mask Can Help Us Tell the History of Total War"

11/05/2021 at 18.00

The Humanities Society organises regular talks during term time. During Easter term 2021, all talks take place as zoom webinars, make sure to register.

Adeel Khan

Green Society - How to use the power of social media for good?

13/05/2021 at 18.00

The Green Society organises regular talks during term time. During Easter term 2021, all talks take place as zoom webinars, make sure to register.

Group of people sitting round a table, some of the using computers and wearing headsets

Peer Review Workshop

13/05/2021 at 19.00

Do you have an idea that you would like feedback on? Perhaps you would like to see if an argument you are writing is clear or makes sense? Maybe you would like to see if the data you are presenting in your paper flows well with your surrounding text?

group of women

Beyond Borders: Women's Movements Around the World

14/05/2021 at 16.00

The Interdisciplinary Research Hub on Gender is hosting a collaborative event featuring academics and activists to give voice to feminist movements outside the Euro-American world.

Jazmin Scarlett

Science Society - The keys to the past: a mixed-methods approach to reconstructing the 1812 eruption of La Soufrière St. Vincent

14/05/2021 at 18.00

The Science Society organises regular talks during term time. Throughout this term, all talks take place as zoom meetings, make sure to register.