The Chancellor

His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, has paid his final visit to the University before he stands down as Chancellor at the end of the month.

Yesterday afternoon His Royal Highness was received at Robinson College, of which he is Visitor, by the Warden of the College, Professor David Yates.

After viewing an exhibition relating to the founding of the College in 1977, the year he was installed as Chancellor, Prince Philip was guest of honour at a reception for Fellows, students and staff.

He also enjoyed a brief performance of  Evening Hymn (Te lucis)  by Henry Balfour Gardiner given by the choir in the College chapel, which is famous for its John Piper stained glass windows.

This was the Chancellor’s third visit to Robinson, the first having been to the construction site in 1979 and the second when he accompanied Her Majesty The Queen for the official opening on 29th May 1981.

In the evening the Duke attended a dinner at Trinity College to mark his 34 years as Chancellor,  attended by 200 guests. Paying tribute the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Leszek Borysiewicz, said:

“The University has been fortunate beyond measure to have had The Duke of Edinburgh as our Chancellor for these past three and a half decades.  Prince Philip is held in the greatest respect and affection here: there is hardly a corner of the University and its Colleges he has not visited, always showing the keenest interest in our students, our teaching and our research across all disciplines.”

This morning the Chancellor travelled to the Sidgwick Site where he visited the Faculty of Music and the Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages.

In between the two he paused to view the construction site of the new home for Humanities and Social Sciences on West Road which, it was announced today, will be named The Alison Richard Building in honour of the Vice-Chancellor Emerita.

Prince Philip’s final duty as Chancellor was the conferring of Honorary Degrees on eight distinguished individuals at a special Congregation in the Senate House.

Mrs Anita Lasker Wallfisch, a cellist and a co-founder of the English Chamber Orchestra, who is a survivor of and writer on the Holocaust and a visiting lecturer in the Faculty of Divinity received the title of Doctor of Divinity, honoris causa.

Dr Shirin Ebadi, Nobel Peace Prize-winner, a lawyer and judge who was formerly President of the Tehran City Court and a Lecturer in Law at the University of Tehran received the title of the degree Doctor of Law, honoris causa.

Sir Martin Evans, Nobel Prizewinner in Medicine, Professor of Mammalian Genetics and Director of the Cardiff School of Biosciences at the University of Cardiff and an Honorary Fellow of Christ's College and of St Edmund's College received the title of Doctor of Law, honoris causa (Sir Martin already holds the Doctor of Science Degree at Cambridge).

Dame Alison Richard, an anthropologist and former Vice-Chancellor of the University, Honorary Fellow of Newnham College, of Wolfson College, and of Lucy Cavendish College received the title of Doctor of Law, honoris causa.

Dr Mildred Dresselhaus, Professor of Physics and Electrical Engineering and Emerita Institute Professor at The Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Received the title of Doctor of Science, honoris causa.

Sir Peter Mansfield, Nobel Prizewinner in Physiology or Medicine, a medical physicist and developer of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). Emeritus Professor of Physics in the University of Nottingham and an Honorary Fellow of Hughes Hall received the title of Doctor of Science, honoris causa.

Sir Trevor Nunn, theatre director, Director Emeritus of the Royal Shakespeare Company, formerly Artistic Director of the Royal National Theatre and an Honorary Fellow of Downing College received the title of Doctor of Letters, honoris causa.

Sir Colin Davis, conductor, who was formerly Musical Director of the Royal Opera House and is President and formerly Principal Conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra received the title of Doctor of Music, honoris causa.


Faculty of  Modern and Medieval Languages:

Faculty of Music:

Robinson College:

Honorary Degrees:


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Licence. If you use this content on your site please link back to this page.