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Accommodation, Food, IT and Domestic Information

This page is for graduate Freshers | Back to graduate Freshers home page


You will hear directly from the Domestic Manager about any requests or offers of accommodation you have made or received. For all other information about accommodation, including bedding, kitchen equipment, electrical equipment, televisions, maintenance, alterations and damage, laundry, and vacation store rooms, please see the graduate accommodation page.


A buffet-style lunch and dinner are served in Balliol Hall seven days a week during term time, and breakfast is available during the week. Once you have completed your University Registration and have your SSO, you can register online for a pre-paid meal deal: see the food page for more information, including the daily menu in Hall and other food options for students.

IT and internet access

There is information about IT facilities and services for students, including network access, computer rooms and printing, in the Current Members section of the website under IT Services. Please take a look at these pages:
• Student IT Facilities and Services
• Computing Rules
• Internet Access (you are advised to sign up to Eduroam before arrival if you can)
• Network Essentials


Students keeping bicycles at the Graduate Centre must register them at Holywell Manor Lodge. At the Master’s Field there are bicycle rings for parking outside (inside the secure site) and there is also a large indoor bicycle store in the basement of Block D3. Spaces in this store are held by ballot, which is organised by the MCR.

Many students find it advisable to take out insurance on their bicycles. Please see also this information on cycle security and the rules about bicycles in the College Handbook.

Dress code

Sub fusc: in normal circumstances, for the Matriculation ceremony (your formal admission to the University), for University Examinations and other formal events, the required dress is sub fusc — i.e. you should wear your preferred items from the following: dark suit with dark socks, or a dark skirt with black tights or stockings, or dark trousers with dark socks or dark hosiery; a dark coat if required; black shoes; plain white collared shirt or blouse; a white bow tie, black bow tie, black full-length tie, or black ribbon. You are also required to wear a gown and mortar board or soft cap. Clothes should be appropriate for formal occasions. (There is more information about wearing sub fusc in the College Handbook.)

It is possible to obtain the headwear, tie and gown on arrival at the College, and these can also be loaned or hired from the Porters’ Lodge at Broad Street or from various outfitters in Oxford. The following retailers offer deals for new students:
• Shepherd & Woodward
• The Varsity Shop
• Walters

Formal dress: student gowns are not worn for dinner at Balliol, but there is a served dinner in Hall each Tuesday during term, and there are other occasions when you will wish to dress smartly (for men, a suit, or at minimum a jacket and tie). 

Fire safety

Please read the fire instructions posted in each room. See also the information about fire safety in the College Handbook.

Music Rooms

There is a Music Room at the Broad Street site in which instruments are routinely stored and entry to which is controlled first by virtue of joining the Balliol Musical Society and second by signing out the key to the room. Holywell Manor has its own music facility: see the Holywell Manor guide. You are advised to insure your instruments. 


There are multi-gyms at Broad Street and at Holywell Manor. All students wishing to use the gyms must pay a £10 per term membership fee; they may sign up yearly or by term; the MCR and JCR Sports Reps will pass names to the Bursary for payment following the induction session. Students must also attend an induction session for each gym they intend to use before using the gyms for the first time; the inductions are usually held in Michaelmas Term at the end of Freshers’ Week. Note that because of the pandemic gym use may be restricted. To use the Holywell Manor gym, you need to book the gym online.

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