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King’s College of Household & Social Science, 1928-53

Students at work in the College Library, c1930 (Ref: Q/PH3/14)Students at work in the College Library, c1930 (Ref: Q/PH3/14)On 16 May 1928 a resolution of the Senate of the University of London finally severed the connection between King’s College and the Household and Social Science Department at King’s College for Women, with the latter being recognised as an independent School of the University of London under the name King’s College of Household and Social Science.

On 29 January 1929 the Privy Council affixed its seal to the new Statute conferring on the College the privilege of independent existence. The Executive Committee became the College Council, and included among its new members a representative of the past students of the College.

As a School of the University of London in the Faculty of Science, students at the College were registered as Internal Students for the University of London BSc in Household and Social Science and for the Postgraduate Diploma in Dietetics. Non-matriculated students were admitted to short courses in Institutional and Household Management, and a science course was available to State Registered Nurses, to qualify for the position of Sister Tutor.

Students on the Sister Tutor's course outside the Quadrangle huts, c1948 (Ref: Q/PH1/44)Students on the Sister Tutor's course outside the Quadrangle huts, c1948 (Ref: Q/PH1/44)As the College grew, subsequent years saw several additions and improvements to campus buildings. In 1930, a new wing extended from the south-east corner of the administrative block to the east end of the refectory and completed the Quadrangle according to the original design. A year later saw extensions to the Physics building and to the Teaching Kitchen in the Household Arts Department.

This was particularly vital for the work of the College, with the new kitchen almost doubling in proportions and adding to the iconic shape of the room. These extensions were formally opened at a reception on 17 March 1933, and were followed by a much needed development encompassing the entire Household Arts Department in September 1935, where the department was extended to the farthest possible limit on the west side of the College.

Front view of Holly Lodge, c1966 (Ref: Q/PH3/144Front view of Holly Lodge, c1966 (Ref: Q/PH3/144The outbreak of the Second World War in 1939 saw the evacuation of the College from London, initially to Cardiff and then onto Leicester. When the College returned to Campden Hill seven years later, in 1946, it was beset by post-war construction problems. Accommodation shortages were partially met with the construction of two temporary huts in the Quadrangle, following which a grant through the University Court permitted the College to acquire not only the freehold of its own buildings, but those of two adjoining properties, Thornwood Lodge and Holly Lodge.

The aim was to construct new laboratories on these sites, although finances were not to permit this for several years. Thornwood Lodge was in poor condition; however Holly Lodge was easily refurbished and, from 1951, provided accommodation for lecture and staff rooms, a student common room and snack bar.

From 1947, moving forward academically under the guidance of new principal Miss Sargeaunt, the College prepared for larger numbers of students, many returning from national service, and sought additional funding through the creation of new and extended courses. Several fruitful avenues of research were identified, providing the potential for eighteen postgraduate research fellowships, and the College proposed to also seek funds from local authorities for the establishment of entrance scholarships, to attract able pupils from secondary schools into the field of household and social science.

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