Established in 1850 as a Catholic teacher training college, St Mary's has a long-standing reputation for academic excellence and the granting of university title is an exciting milestone in its history.
On 23rd January 2014, St Mary's University College, Twickenham, was awarded full university title by the Privy Council and became St Mary's University, Twickenham.
The University's current estate is in four parts. The main campus is on Waldegrave Road in Twickenham within the grounds of Strawberry Hill House, a hall of residence is located at 16 Strawberry Hill Road, the main sports fields are located on the Teddington Lock campus in Broom Road, Teddington, and the new Naylor Library (also on Waldegrave Road) which opened in the autumn of 2015.
Strawberry Hill House, located in the University grounds, is Britain's finest example of Georgian Gothic Revival architecture. It was designed and created as a Gothic fantasy between 1747 and 1792 by Horace Walpole, historian, writer, collector and son of Britain's first Prime Minister Sir Robert Walpole.
The house had been on English Heritage's At Risk Register and was listed on the World Monuments Fund Watch List in 2004, a move which proved a catalyst in starting a campaign for its repair. In 2007 the building and adjoining grounds were leased by the University to the Strawberry Hill Trust, an independent building preservation trust and in October 2010 a two-year long £9m restoration was completed and the property reopened to the public. The restoration programme has been made possible by a £4.9m grant from the UK's Heritage Lottery Fund and over £1.5m from World Monuments Fund, including a $1.1m donation from the Robert W. Wilson Challenge Fund to Conserve Our Heritage, as well as numerous charitable trusts, local societies and individual patrons.
An education centre is a key focus of the activity and the Trust works with the University on a number of Gothic related collaborations.
For visitor information and opening times please go to Strawberry Hill House's website.
Sitting within the grounds of St Mary's, Strawberry Hill House is being restored by English Heritage.
The Waldegrave Wing, including the Waldegrave Drawing Room and Senior Common Room, continue to be used by the University. Virtual tours featuring the Waldegrave Drawing Room interior, Strawberry Hill House and grounds, and several campus buildings and facilities can be found on the Virtual Tours page of this website.