Link Area Accommodation Scheme

To help organise our work with schools, each Cambridge College is linked to a region or regions in the UK. The King's Link Areas are some way from Cambridge, in Yorkshire and the the North East of England. We are aware that in order for students in these areas to attend events in Cambridge, it would normally be necessary to stay overnight the night before.

We can help with this a little! If you are a Year 12 student in a King's Link Area state school, we may be able to offer you free B&B accommodation in College if we have a room available the night before an event you are attending, between mid-January and August of Year 12. This might be a Subject Masterclass, a Department Open Day, any College Open Day (if no accommodation is provided by the relevant college), a Science Festival event or any of the other events advertised in Cambridge.

The accommodation is limited and is for individual Year 12 students (or pairs of students if you have a friend who wants to attend the same event) who will be travelling on their own. This scheme is not for school groups, or for students who are not yet in Year 12.


Which Schools are Included?

The King's Link Area covers state schools in the following areas:

  • Northumberland

  • County Durham

  • Hartlepool

  • Darlington

  • Middlesbrough

  • Stockton-on-Tees

  • Redcar and Cleveland

  • York

  • Hull

  • East Riding of Yorkshire

If your school is not in one of these areas, please see the below link.

How Do I Book?

To book a room, please send an email to including:

  • your full name

  • your phone number

  • the full name and address of your school (it must be a state maintained school)

  • a request to stay overnight at King's, stating clearly your arrival date (it must be between 15 January and 30 August)

  • The name, date and time (if known) of the event you will be attending in Cambridge.

NB. Each student who would like to stay overnight in King's must email us directly - it is not possible to make group bookings.  

We will reply within a few days to let you know if we have an overnight room available for you. If the answer is yes, we will make a provisional booking for you and send you some forms to return to us (this will require signatures from a) a tutor or teacher at your school, b) your parents or guardians, and c) you).  

We will give you a date in our email by which we must receive the signed forms (you can post them or if you can get access to a scanner, you can scan and send them by email). When we have received your signed forms, we will then email you again to confirm your booking and provide any further details for your stay in College. You will need to show a copy of your confirmation email when you arrive at King's.

Please email us in plenty of time to request the accommodation as we will need to receive the signed paperwork at least one week before you stay at King's. Unfortunately, we will have to say no to last-minute requests as we are not able to provide your room without the relevant signed paperwork in advance.


What if I'm in Year 13?

If you are going to apply to university next October (and take a gap year), you can use the accommodation scheme in Year 13. Please note, however, that the scheme is only for prospective students.We cannot accommodate offer-holders through this scheme.

Thinking of taking a year out before starting University? All the information you need can be found here.
Find out more about our Open Days, visiting King's at other times and informal meetings with our Admissions team, or take the virtual tour!

Getting to King's by Train

To check train times to Cambridge and buy tickets, please see the National Rail Enquiries website. Cambridge Railway Station is not in the city centre so you will need to allow a bit of time to get to King's. The railway station is about 1.3 miles (1.6km) from King's, at the end of Station Road (CB1 2JW). If you would prefer not to walk, you can take a bus (Citi 1 or Citi 7) towards Drummer Street, or a taxi from outside the station.

What Will it Cost?

If we have a room available for you, your accommodation, and meals from the King's canteen will be offered free of charge. Most events for prospective students are free to attend, although there is a £20 charge for Subject Masterclasses. Funded places are available for some students – details are given on the booking page for each Masterclass.

You will however need to pay for your own transport. We recommend applying for a 16-25 Railcard if you don't already have one - this will give you a discount on rail travel. If you are also able to book well in advance and look for the cheaper times to travel (we can be flexible about what time you arrive at King's), this will also reduce the cost.

What To Do When You Arrive

You can pick up your room key any time from 4pm on the day you arrive. When you arrive at the main entrance of King's on King's Parade (CB2 1ST), please go to the Porters' Lodge (essentially the reception). Introduce yourself to the porter on duty and explain that you are attending an event for prospective students and have booked a room to stay overnight in King's. If you tell the porter your name, they will give you your room key (and directions to your room), as well as an envelope with information, a map of King's, and your meal tickets. We also supply a bath towel and a small bar of soap for students staying overnight.

Please do not worry if your train gets in late, as the Porters' Lodge is open 24 hours a day - there will always be a porter to welcome you and give you your room key. If you arrive after the front gate is locked, please use the bell on the right of the main entrance (on the wall behind the post box), which rings through to the Porters' Lodge so that the porter on duty can let you in.

Getting to Your Event

Please ensure that you bring information about where you need to be at what time in the morning with you. Many events are not organised by King's so we will not have this information.

Events at another College

King's is in central Cambridge so you will normally be able to walk to most Colleges without problem. We will provide a map of Cambridge in your welcome pack when you arrive, and the King's porters will be happy to point out where you should go if you tell them where you've been asked to meet. For advance preparation, the University of Cambridge Map shows where all the Colleges are. Look out for the bowler hats! These indicate a Porters' Lodge, i.e. the entrance to the College. The College porters will be happy to give you directions to the relevant room in the College. If you want to look in advance, you will often find a College map on the relevant College website.

Events at the Sidgwick Site

Many events for prospective students take place on the Sidgwick Site, which is a collection of faculty buildings and lecture theatres. For this, you need to head out the back gate of King's (cross the bridge over the river in King's and walk down the avenue lined with trees to the back gate), then cross Queens' road at the lights just to the left of King's back gate, then go up West Road. You will find the Sidgwick Site up the road on your left. It is very easy, but if you have any difficulties, the King's porters will be happy to give you directions.


You will find your meal tickets in the envelope that the porters will give you when you arrive, and the College map we provide will show you where the canteen is. We recommend that you arrive in time for the evening meal in King's if you can. The canteen provides food from 6-7pm, and you then take your tray through to the hall or the bar (whichever you prefer) to eat. As well as an opportunity to try the food, the evening meal is a good opportunity to meet current students studying at the College.

We will normally provide breakfast for you in the morning as well, for which you go to the canteen again (open 8 - 9.15am). On Saturday mornings the canteen opens later so we normally give students a voucher to pick up breakfast in the King's Coffee Shop, which opens at 9am on Saturdays.

Accommodation gallery 1
Useful information for prospective students and parents / guardians about where to stay in Cambridge during your visit to the College.
King's organises and undertakes visits to schools, as well as co-ordinating visits to the College by school pupils and teachers.
The Access Bus is an outreach initiative which sees King's students travel to the College's catchment area in the North East.

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