Formal Hall

Formal Hall is a weekly high-quality dinner with full waiter service and wine. It is a wonderful Cambridge tradition that you will find in one way or another at all Cambridge Colleges.

➜ Book for Formal Hall online

➜ Upcoming dates for Formal Hall in the College Calendar

About Formal Hall

  • At Murray Edwards, Formal Hall takes place on Tuesday evenings and also on every first Friday of the month in term time.
  • Graduates are invited to one Formal Hall per week free of charge*
  • The Fellows invite all graduate students and their guests to sherry in the Fellows’ Drawing Room before Formal Hall from 6.45pm. Everyone is called to the dome at 7.05pm sharp (for dinner to commence at 7.15).
  • Formals tend to be very popular and spaces are usually gone quite quickly. So,  if you  want to attend Formal on a specific date, make sure to book your tickets early: for a normal Tuesday night formal, booking opens at midnight on the Wednesday two weeks before the formal, for a normal Friday night formal, the respective date is the Saturday two weeks before (again: booking start is at midnight).

* Graduate students may attend Formals for free until they have completed the required number of terms for their degree, when Formal tickets will be charged at the student rate and billed termly in arrears.

Booking Formal Hall tickets

You can book Formal Hall tickets online, on the College meal booking pages.

Be aware though that if you make a booking and don’t turn up, you will be billed (the price of the meal you missed will be added to your College bill for next term). Please note as well that it’s not possible to simply pass on your ticket to another graduate last minute, since there are checks of student ID cards when you collect your tickets.

So, if you realise you cannot go, it’s best to email the Catering department straight away ( and let them know – this way you won’t be billed and someone else may take your place.

Guest tickets

Guest tickets can also be purchased (via the meal booking service). You can bring one guest and the cost will be taken from your account at the time of booking, so you will need credit on your student card. Feel free to bring your family and children as well – Formal is a family-friendly affair!

Group bookings

Up to two graduates can make a group booking of up to 10 people (including themselves) for each normal Formal Hall. If you would like to make a group booking, you need to check availability of your preferred date with the Catering Team and then fill in the Group Booking Form with your guests’ names and dietary requirements  and send this to catering ( no later than 10 days before the event.


  • Formal Hall tickets for Murray Edwards members: £10.50 (if they have already attended their one free formal per week)
  • Formal Hall tickets for guests: £12.60
  • Super Hall tickets for Murray Edwards members: £14.15 (if they have already attended their one free formal per week)
  • Super Hall tickets for guests: £16.95

Family Formal Hall charges

  • Under 7 years: no charge
  • 7-11 years: £5.45
  • 12 years and over:  £10.85

Dress code

There is no set dress code as such, but be guided by the name Formal Hall: jeans and trainers are a no, smart trousers/skirt are a yes.

Academic gowns are not usually required, but most people do wear them. They’ll also be useful for attending Formals at other Colleges.

➜ Graduate Union Gown Guide