Downing College is supported by more than 160 staff, ranging from porters to gardeners, and all are entitled to a range of benefits.  


Full-time staff are entitled to 33 days leave, including Bank Holidays (the entitlement is pro-rata to 33 days for part-time staff). The College operates maternity, paternity, shared parental leave, adoptive, compassionate and emergency leave. 

Pension and life assurance 

All staff can join the college’s contributory pension scheme. The college contributes up to 10% (rates are service-dependent). 

Non-contractual benefits


A college lunch is available to all staff on working days when the service is open. The daily lunch subsidy will generally provide a two-course meal. There are hot and cold dishes, with plant-based options. 


The college offers season ticket loans for rail journeys, and Cycle Scheme discounts.

Downing has a limited number of car parking spaces which authorised staff are able to use during normal working hours. 

There are also electric vehicle charging points, plus cycle storage racks. 

Wellbeing Benefits

All staff benefit from a subscription to a single, basic membership of a healthcare cash plan. In addition, the College subscribes to a confidential employee support freephone helpline. 

There is the option to join The Cambridge Colleges Healthcare Plan plus a subsidised dental scheme.

Staff can use the College’s well-equipped Fitness Room for a one-off induction fee. 

Social Activities

Various staff social events happen throughout the year, including a summer outing, an annual cricket match between staff and Fellows, and a Christmas dinner-dance.  Musical events take place in the College Chapel and the Master’s Lodge throughout the year and staff are welcome to attend.  Staff are also welcome to attend most events put on by student Music and Drama Societies.

Money Saving Benefits

As a member of the University you are entitled to certain discounts on presenting your University Card in many establishments throughout Cambridge.

A full list of the attractive staff benefits is available from the College's HR Office. Please note that these benefits are non-contractual and may be amended or withdrawn at our discretion. 

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