Westfield College

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Westfield College was a small college situated in Kidderpore Avenue, Hampstead, London, and was a constituent college of the University of London from 1882 to 1989. [1] The college originally admitted only women as students and became coeducational in 1964. In 1989, Westfield College merged with Queen Mary College. The merged institution was named Queen Mary and Westfield College until 2013, when the name was legally changed to Queen Mary University of London. [2]



The college was founded in 1882 by Constance Louise Maynard (1849–1935) and Ann Dudin Brown. Dudin Brown had intended to found a missionary school but she had been persuaded otherwise by Maynard and Mary Petrie. [3] They worked with the Metcalfe sisters. [4] Dudin Brown was the founding benefactress and council member from 1882 to 1917. Until the mid-1980s residences were still segregated.

In the mid-to-late 1980s, the University of London underwent considerable reorganisation, and many smaller colleges were merged. Consequently, Westfield was merged with Queen Mary College in 1989, forming Queen Mary and Westfield College. Most student accommodation, administrative offices and several academic departments continued to be based at the Hampstead campus until 1992, however, and the College retained its separate identity. The new, combined, College was finally located at Queen Mary's site in Mile End, East London from 1992 onwards. However, some departments moved to King's College London and many academic staff moved to other colleges, such as Royal Holloway College. [5]

A history of the college called "Castle Adamant in Hampstead" was published in 1983.


Present day

King's College London took over the former Westfield site, which has been divided up over the years. The majority of the south side of the site (The Queen's Building and other teaching blocks) was demolished in the early 1990s to make way for The Westfield Apartments, a block of luxury private flats. The remainder of the south side (the Caroline Skeel Library, Ellison, Temple, Chesney and Stocks buildings) was used by King's College as student accommodation and as an archive. The north side of the site (Queen Mother Hall, Bay House, Old House, Maynard, Lady Chapman, Orchard I and II, Dudin-Brown and Skeel buildings) remains in use as student accommodation, with Orchard I and II renamed for Lord Cameron and Rosalind Franklin, respectively. Until 2005, the Old House was home to the London Jewish Cultural Centre.

The Westfield College name was lost following the 2013 change of the merged institution's legal name to Queen Mary University of London. The new college's student accommodation complex (opened in 2004) is named the Westfield Student Village as a reminder of the history of Westfield College. Moreover, the Westfield Trust Prize, an academic cash prize given to outstanding undergraduate or postgraduates studying at Queen Mary, has been established in memory of the college.

One of the University buildings, the non-denominational chapel built in 1929, [5] was sold and became part of the Hampstead Manor development with its 156 homes of various types and sizes. Because it had deteriorated, the building was taken apart, re-built with modifications and renovated by the new owners. The Chapel was on the market in early 2020 for £7.5 million. [10] The Skeel Library, a Grade II listed property [11] built in 1903-1904, also became part of the Hampstead Manor, and was also converted into a four bedroom family home. [12]


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Ann Dudin Brown

Ann Dudin Brown (1822–1917) was a benefactor. She funded the establishment of Westfield College for women.

Martin Petrie (1823–1892) was an English army officer and author. Petrie, his wife and his daughter Mary Petrie were involved in the foundation of Westfield College. His other daughter Irene Petrie died as a missionary in Kashmir.

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Caroline Anne James Skeel was a British historian. She was a professor of history at Westfield College, and is remembered for her work in Welsh social and economic history. The library at Westfield was named after her in 1971.

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Margaret Graham Brooke (1863–1944) was one of the first students at Westfield College in London and a missionary in West Africa.

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Fanny Metcalfe was a pioneering educator who set up a school for girls, and was involved in setting up more than one women's college.


  1. Janet Sondheimer (1983). Castle Adamant in Hampstead. ISBN   0-904188-05-1
  2. "Our History". www.qmul.ac.uk.
  3. Janet Sondheimer, 'Brown, Ann Dudin (1822–1917)', Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004 , accessed 8 September 2018
  4. Murray, J.H.; Stark, M. (2016). The Englishwoman's Review of Social and Industrial Questions: 1897. Routledge Library Editions: The Englishwoman's Review of Social and Industrial Questions. Taylor & Francis. p. 191. ISBN   978-1-315-39652-1 . Retrieved 2019-09-23.
  6. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Toni Hardy (September 2010). "Westfield College". Archives in London and the M25 area..
  7. Terry Gunnell, « Newall [née Phillpotts], Dame Bertha Surtees (1877–1932) », Oxford Dictionary of National Biography , Oxford University Press, 2004,
  8. Frances Lannon, « Lodge, Eleanor Constance (1869–1936) », Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004
  9. Duncan Sutherland, « Stocks [née Brinton], Mary Danvers, Baroness Stocks (1891–1975), Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004»,
  10. A converted university building becomes a Hampstead mansion, with a price tag to match
  11. Historic England. "Skeel Library (1379252)". National Heritage List for England . Retrieved 21 February 2020.
  12. Prime cuts: Launching Skeel Library & The Chapel at Hampstead Manor
  13. "The Rev Joyce Bennett obituary The Guardian". The Guardian . 26 July 2015. Retrieved 2 August 2015.