Round Church Scriptorium | CAMBRIDGE

Ora Et Labora

Hospitality + Community + Scholarship

A vibrant and organic writing community of graduates and faculty within Cambridge



Round Church


Dating from the 6th century, scriptorium means "a place for writing" and refers to a room in medieval European monasteries devoted to the writing, copying and illuminating of manuscripts by monastic scribes. They defined European literary culture and selectively preserved the literary history of the West. Not only had Christian monasteries become the centres of learning throughout Europe, but the monastic system contributed toward the founding of Cambridge University in 1209. 







Predating the university, the Round Church (c.1130) originally served as a wayfarers chapel on the main Roman road, where a priest of ‘Hospital of St. Johns’ (later site for St. John’s College) would minister with hospitality to the weary traveler. Given the current transient nature of Cambridge, the academic experience for many can be pressure-driven, isolating and fragmenting, affecting the health of the scholars' personhood and scholarship. To address this reality, the Round Church Scriptorium maintains the practice of a wayfarers chapel by providing the graduate and faculty community of Cambridge - HOSPITALITY, COMMUNITY and SCHOLARSHIP. We demonstrate this through our daily tailored program, the LITURGY OF THE HOURS




Round Church


friendly service provided during the framework of study;
desks hold one plug socket & two USB ports;
tea and coffee served during breaks;
lunch served by staff on Mondays;
Wi-Fi/copy/printer available;
no fee is required

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food & fellowship with others representing a diversity of disciplines;
small discussion groups for interdisciplinary cross-fertilisation;
no religious affiliation is necessary in order to join;
cIty centre location
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productivity & discipline in reaching individual set goals of writing and research;
staff offer assistance both intellectually and personally;
reserved for graduates and faculty

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Round Church

Liturgy of the Hours

An integrated structure of time accountability, communal work, and interdisciplinary conversation, 
designed to serve and encourage scholars who are seeking to complete
their writing projects during their university experience.







We are open Monday - Friday; 9am - 5:00pm. Formal communal writing days take place on Monday/Wedneday/Friday.
Tuesday and Thursday no booking necessary. You're welcome to join us, but places are limited each day.
Please contact David Illman for booking a desk: 

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