Accommodation Shopping List

All Downing College rooms should contain:

Armchair Desk
Bed, Mattress and Protector Desk Chair
Bedside Table Desk Lamp
Bookcase Wardrobe
Chest of Drawers Waste Bin

Please note, some but not all College rooms are equipped with an internal telephone.

Items to bring.  The items listed have been suggested by current and former students and are by no means exhaustive.  If in any doubt about the suitability of an item and whether you should or should not bring it to College, please contact the Accommodation Office for clarification.  Please also refer to page 6 (Furniture, Fittings and Decoration) of the Student Accommodation Handbook.  The intention is not for you to bring everything listed, but to provide a list of items you might find useful:

First, some advice

  1. Aim to travel light.  You will be moving into a room with limited cupboard space and if you are an undergraduate, you will be moving out again at the end of each Term.  One large suitcase and a couple of boxes is about the right level.  The College has very limited storage facilities available.
  2. Before you go out and buy anything, make sure you have checked what is provided by College in the kitchen and in your room.  You do not want to turn up with items that are already in situ.
  3. Don't worry if you forget to bring anything vital, as you can always purchase it when you get here.

Kitchens are shared areas, so it is a good idea to club together and purchase appliances with other students on your arrival in Cambridge.  You do not want to end up with many of the same appliance, as kitchen storage space is limited. 

  • Table mats and coasters for drinks
  • Crockery [Plates, bowls, mugs and cups.]
  • Cutlery [Knives, forks and spoons.  You only need a couple of each item.]
  • Glasses
  • Cooking pans* and kitchen utensils
  • Plastic storage tubs [Write your name on the lids to prevent them going missing.]
  • Cling-film or tin foil
  • Tea towels and washing-up liquid
  • Basic store cupboard ingredients and food [Can be purchased on arrival in Cambridge.]

*Many properties in College have induction hobs installed.  Therefore, before purchasing pans please contact the Accommodation Office to enquire if you need to purchase a set of pans suitable for use with an induction hob.

Your room is provided with a mattress protector (which remains the property of the College), but you will need the following items.  Please note, the Housekeeping Department offer for sale pillow and duvet packs, as well as bedding packages at the beginning of the academic year.  It is also possible to hire linen throughout the year.  For further information, please consult the Housekeeping pages.  Prior to purchasing any items yourself, please check with the Accommodation Office whether you will require a single or double.

  • Duvet - one with two different layers that attach for warmth is best
  • Bottom sheets x2
  • Duvet/quilt covers x2 sets
  • Pillows x2 [One if you prefer.]
  • Pillow cases x4
  • Warm blanket/fleece throw
  • Bath towels and hand towels x2
  • Laundry basket or bag [Can be stored either in the corner of your room or bottom of the wardrobe.]

Please refer to pages 21 and 22 of the Student Accommodation Handbook for a list of permitted electrical appliances and their use.

  • Alarm clock or clock radio
  • Family photographs
  • Furniture mats [To prevent any damage to surfaces.]
  • Pictures and posters [It is not permitted to use any adhesive or fixings other than those provided by the College.  Some rooms have magnetic walls and some have an integral picture rail.  Up to a quantity of five magnets or picture rail hooks are available upon request from the Housekeeping Department.]
  • Bathroom items and toiletries
  • Hair straighteners [Must be used with a protective heat mat to prevent any damage to College property.]
  • Clothing and coat hangers
  • Laptop [There is a fully-equipped Computer Room on site with printing facilities.]
  • Stationery

The College does not advise you to bring an iron or drying rack to College.  The laundry rooms are equipped with drying facilities, an iron, and ironing board.  Washing must not be hung over radiators or outside your room or building.  This is to prevent any damage to College property, fixtures or fittings.

A number of insurance claims are submitted each year as a result of damage to rooms caused by hair dyes and chemicals.  If you choose to use these products, please do so with extreme caution and restrict their use to the bathroom area only.