Formal Procedure

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

  • 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 (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).
  • 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 atted 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).

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 realize 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 Fromal Hall. If you would like to make a group booking, you need to fill in the College group booking form with your guests’ names and dietary requirements and submit the form alongside a cheque (payable to Murray Edwards College) to cover the cost of all guest tickets no later than 10 days before the event to Catering (

The following prices apply

  • Formal Hall tickets for Murray Edwards members: £10.00 (if they have already attended their one free formal per week)
  • Formal Hall tickets for guests: £12.00
  • Super Hall tickets for Murray Edwards members: £13.45 (if they have already attended their one free formal per week)
  • Super Hall tickets for guests: £15.55

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 are worn by many members of College attending Formal and will also be useful for attending Formals at other Colleges.

The graduate society of Murray Edwards College Cambridge