Access Guide to Swirles Court

Last updated: November 2018

Swirles Court is In the centre of Eddington, the University’s new development about 2.5 miles from the City Centre.The drawing below illustrates Swirles Courtat the heart of the development with excellent transport links in Phase 1 and in the future as the Primary Street network is completed to the north.


Eddington itself is quiet, but the Huntingdon and Madingley Roads are very busy, especially at peak times.

Services and shops

There is a Sainsburys Supermarket and Argos pick up point  approximately two minutes walk (200m) from Swirles Court.  Other amenities in progress:

  • Primary School
  • University run café
  • Community Centre
  • Nursery Facility
  • Doctors Surgery
  • Police touchdown facility
  • Retail units
  • Hotel
  • Senior living home
  • Public, green space and lands
  • Energy Centre


Designated accessible parking is provided on-site. There are four designated accessible bays in the Entrance Court, close to the main entrance and Porter’s Lodge, serving houses to the west and south of the site, and a further three to the rear car park.

Other transport options

There are frequent Uni buses to and from the city centre and Addenbrookes.

There is a zip car located on site.

325 mostly postgraduate students. For men and women. College is based on three sites: the main site near Girton, the largely postgraduate community at Eddington  and a separate non residential cafeteria/teaching facility in Wolfson Court, close to the City centre and the Centre for Mathematical Sciences. See separate entry for Wolfson Court. Swirles Court  is mostly accessible, with lifts in. Two manual wheelchairs and one electric wheelchair are  available to borrow from the Porters’ Lodge.


No smoking anywhere on site.

Medical facilities

Two part-time nurses hold regular surgeries at the main site (tel. 01223 338937) and will visit. The College Health and Welfare Centre is at the main site. All Porters are first aiders. The nearest GP surgery is at 1, Huntingdon Rd. A Health centre is currently under construction at Eddington.

Emergency procedures

Advise Porters’ Lodge if you will need help evacuating in an emergency. Evacuation chairs are fitted as required by emergency evacuation plans where lift access is the norm and otherwise held at the lodge for use across the site. Where there are lifts, there are also refuges on each floor with communications back to the Porters’ Lodge.  Speak to the Head Porter regarding an individual evacuation plan.

Accommodation and Catering

The scheme provides 15 accessible en suite units including 14 designed to ‘lifetime homes’ standards and 1 Part M compliant.

Units are distributed around the site, with 1  accessible room per ‘house’. (4 units are on the upper floors of buildings without lifts.)

7 rooms, including the part M compliant room, are on the ground floor,

4  near to the porters’ lodge. 4 rooms are on the first floor with lift access.

4 units are on the upper floors of buildings without lifts.

The strategy for the design and distribution of rooms has been developed with the Centre for Accessible Environments (CAE).

The part M compliant room has been designed following the ‘Wheelchair Accessible Housing – Best Practice Guide’ document (2008).

Features incorporated include:

  • Level entrances
  • Minimum communal corridor widths
  • A manoeuvring space of at least 1500 x 1800mm inside the entrance
  • Level circulation throughout the units
  • Entrance door opening widths of 800mm or 825mm where approach is not head on
  • Adequate clear opening widths of 800mm to all doors and circulation areas
  • A minimum 1100 x 1700mm space provided for wheelchair charging and storage

A hoist can be arranged in the Part M compliant room, if required.


Rooms can be adapted as required for hearing impaired students, with vibrating pillows and visual alarms and bells and for other disabilities as necessary.

Live-in assistants and assistance dogs

Live-in assistants and dogs welcome but please discuss well in advance.

Early induction and vacation stays

Early induction encouraged. Staying over vacations can also be arranged, with prior notice.

Catering arrangements

Swirles Court is self-catering. Kitchens are spacious, with low level cupboards, work surfaces are not height adjustable.  Students can also access the Girton and Wolfson Court Cafeterias.

Special diets

Most special diets can be catered for in College, including kosher, with sufficient notice. Information regarding nut allergies is provided. Speak to the catering manager about your individual requirements.

Swirles Court grounds in general

Flat access to the Porters’ Lodge, through automatic doors operated with a university card or push button. External gates are card or push button entry. House Access is also by university card or push button. Most areas level, well lit and accessible,  with some  accessible paths running around the edge of the site to minimise the rise and fall of ground. Travel between blocks is external, with no cover.  Mostly hard surfaces, some softer Sedec surface, but hard surface alternative always available. There are intercoms by the rear and side gates near the lodge.

College buildings in general

The main common area near the lodge is ground floor, spacious and accessible and comprises lodge (reception and first aid) laundry, and graduate common/study room. Stairs to the residential areas are well lit and have continuous handrails and contrasting nosings on steps.

Computer facilities

All rooms have wireless access. Wired Ethernet is supplied on request.


All the courtyards are accessible with the exception of the grassed courtyard outside B block which has a 50cm unfenced drop from the path at one end and a 50cm rise at the other. There are easygoing steps (without handrails) at the bottom end allowing access to the grass. There is a temporary ramp available for marquee events. Gardens are mostly level and accessible, with many benches. There are allotment strips on site and the top and bottom strips would be accessible from a wheelchair.


The Laundry is at ground floor level and accessible with 5 low level washing machines and 5 high level and one low level tumble drier. Machines can be booked from your room via a phone app. There is an adapted WC near the porters’ lodge for laundry and common room users.

MCR Common Room / Study area

Ground level access. Flooring all hard surface. Spacious, light, with moveable  workspaces/ seating areas. Screen, projector available. Blind cords are at high level to comply with anti-ligature safety guidelines, so porter assistance may be required for operation (Lodge is staffed 24/7)

Porters’ Lodge and post

Lodge counter is approx. 850mm high with knee space beneath. Hearing loop fitted.  Post is placed in secure pigeonholes your accessed via your university card. Pigeonholes can be reallocated if too high.


Wheelchair accessible toilet near Porters’ Lodge.

Visual Impairments

  • Assistance dogs
  • Computer facilities
  • Large print, Braille and audio
  • Signs and wayfinding
  • Assistance dogs welcome.
  • Special hardware or software for visually impaired users could be acquired if necessary. Various software licences held.
  • Large print letters and information, and on coloured paper, on request. Touch readable and Braille buttons at intercoms.
  • Good, clear colour maps with contrasting fonts and clear signage.
  • Paths are well lit.

College staff visit regularly for consultation.

Induction loops

Induction loops in all public rooms , Fellows’ rooms and Chapel.. Portable loop available, but arrange in advance.


Rooms are  adapted as required for a hearing impaired students, with vibrating pillows and visual alarms and bells.

Extra tuition can be arranged for students with Specific Learning Difficulties, and financial support can be given for assessments and equipment, in conjunction with the Disability Resource Centre.

Special arrangements, for example borrowing arrangements with the library, can be made on a case by case basis in liaison with the student’s tutor.

All arrangements are on an individual basis, in conjunction with the Disability Resource Centre. Discuss your needs with your tutor.

Find Us

Swirles Court

Pheasant Drive

t: +44 (0)1223 760021

Access Issues Contact

Maureen Hackett
t: +44 (0)1223 760021