College Masters

Emmanuel is led by a Master, who is the Head of the College. They chair the Council & Governing Body, managing all College affairs. Our Masters over the years have ranged from popular Protestant preachers and sponsors of historic cathedrals, to academics from underrepresented backgrounds and champions of the environment & conservation.

Picture of Doug Chalmers

28. Doug Chalmers (2021)

Doug Chalmers became the 28th Master of Emmanuel College, Cambridge on 1 October 2021.  He came to the Coll...

Picture of Dame Fiona Reynolds

27. Dame Fiona Reynolds (2012)

Dame Fiona Reynolds DBE became Master of Emmanuel College, Cambridge in 2012. She came to the College from the National Trust, of which she has bee...

Picture of Lord Wilson of Dinton

26. Lord Wilson of Dinton (2002)

Richard Wilson was born in Glamorgan and educated at Radley (1956-60) and Clare College Cambridge (1961-65). He was called to the Bar but, rather t...

Picture of Charles Peter Wroth

23. Charles Peter Wroth (1990)

Peter, as he was known, was the son of Dr Charles and Violet Wroth of Exeter.

After education at Marlborough College he did National Service in the Royal Artillery before coming to Emmanu...

Picture of Sir Gordon Sutherland

21. Sir Gordon Sutherland (1964)

Sir Gordon Brims Black McIvor Sutherland was born in Caithness in 1907 and educated at Morgan Academy, Dundee and at St Andrews University.

Subsequently he was a research student at the U...

Picture of Edward Welbourne

20. Edward Welbourne (1951)

Historian and immensely influential 20th Master of Emmanuel during the 1950s and early 1960s

Picture of Thomas Shirley Hele

19. Thomas Shirley Hele (1935)

T. S. Hele, known within the College as "Timmy", graduated B.A. from Emmanuel in 1903. In 1911, when he had taken the M.D. degree, he returned to Emmanuel as a Fellow, to join colleg...

Picture of Peter Giles

18. Peter Giles (1911)

Peter Giles may stand as a fine example of how an intellectually gifted child from an impoverished background can flourish when the right educational opportunity exists.

Born in a remote ...

Picture of William Chawner

17. William Chawner (1895)

William Chawner was the 5th Classic in 1871 and became Vice-Chancellor 1899-1901.

He was a Liberal and a Reformer. Whilst Senior Tutor in 1878 he raised the possibility of uniting Emmanue...

Picture of Samuel George Phear

16. Samuel George Phear (1871)

Born March 30th in 1829 in East Stonham rectory, Suffolk, Samuel George Phear was a clergyman of the Church of England. He graduated at Cambridge in 1852 as 4th Wrangler and was made a Fellow of Em...

Picture of George Archdall-Gratwicke

15. George Archdall-Gratwicke (1835)

George John Archdall - he added the name Gratwicke only late in life, in 1863, by royal licence - was already about twenty-four years old when he entered Emmanuel in 1811. That he did not come earl...

Picture of Robert Towerson Cory

14. Robert Towerson Cory (1797)

Those who play bowls in the Fellows' Garden at Emmanuel will know that one pair of woods bear the initials R.T.C. They belonged to Robert Towerson Cory, most of whose life was spent at Emmanuel...

Picture of Richard Farmer

13. Richard Farmer (1775)

Thirteenth Master of Emmanuel, Shakespearean scholar and celebrated 18th century don

12. William Richardson (1736)

Richardson, admitted to Emmanuel in 1715-6, is described by Venn as an ‘industrious antiquary’.

He kept the affairs of the College in his own hands, acting as Bursar as well a...

11. William Savage (1719)

Another Master who had been an undergraduate at Emmanuel, admitted in 1686 and a Fellow from 1692 to 1703.

Savage was the incumbent of parishes in London and later in Kent, where he ...

10. John Balderston (1680)

John Balderston was admitted to the College in 1659 and elected a Fellow in 1665.

During his Mastership the number of admissions fell to under 20 in most years, and to only 7 in 1711. The...

Picture of Thomas Holbech

9. Thomas Holbech (1675)

Thomas Holbech was the 3rd son of William Holbech of Birchingley Hall, baptized 21 October 1606 at Fillingley, Warwickshire.

Admitted pensioner of Emmanuel College, Cambridge, 30 April 16...

Picture of John Breton

8. John Breton (1665)

Breton was admitted to the College in 1629. He was elected Master by royal mandate in 1665, following the resignation of William Sancroft on his appointment as Dean of St. Paul’s.


Picture of William Sancroft

7. William Sancroft (1662)

Successively seventh Master of Emmanuel, Dean of St Paul's and 79th Archbishop of Canterbury

6. William Dillingham (1653)

Dillingham became Master following the departure of Anthony Tuckney to be Master of St. John’s, having been admitted to the College in 1636 and elected a Fellow in 1642.

He is said ...

Picture of Anthony Tuckney

5. Anthony Tuckney (1644)

Anthony Tuckney, who entered Emmanuel in 1613, was in many ways a typical Emmanuel man of his generation.

He was a Fellow from 1619 to 1630. In 1629, two years after taking his B.D., he w...

4. Richard Holdsworth (1637)

One of the few Masters, before the late 20th century, to have been elected from outside the College. Richard Holdsworth was a Fellow of St. John’s from 1613.

He held the living of S...

3. William Sandcroft (1628)

William Sandcroft or Sancroft (called the elder to distinguish him from his more famous nephew) was living in Essex as rector of the parish of Stanford-le-Hope at the time of his election as Master...

Picture of John Preston

2. John Preston (1622)

Preston was born in 1587 at Heyford in Northamptonshire and was educated at Queens' College, becoming a fellow in 1609.

He took orders, and on becoming dean of his college drew large ...

Picture of Laurence Chaderton

1. Laurence Chaderton (1584)

First Master of Emmanuel and one of those responsible for producing the 'King James' Authorised Version of the Bible