Our History

Exeter Students' Guild has a rich history spanning many years. See how we have grown into the Guild of today.

Exeter Students' Guild has a rich history spanning many years. See how we have grown into the Guild of today.

From the Beginning

Exeter University Students’ Guild dates back to 1955 when the University was established under its current name, first receiving its Royal Charter.

Since then, as the University has expanded, our student membership has grown dramatically, and with it the Students’ Guild has seen incredible breakthroughs and changes that have been shaped by the generations of dynamic and innovative students.

Nevertheless, while the Guild may look very different today, our core values of support, representation and democracy still remain just as important as we continue to work hard to constantly improve the student experience for our members. We have also had some fun on the way!

University Receives the Royal Charter and the Students' Guild is born, 1955.

Students in Devonshire House, 1960s.

Lopes Hall Common Room, 1950s-60s.

"Life was laid back. We spent lots of time chatting over coffee in our rooms and then going to Devonshire House coffee bar to continue discussions with others over a cheese and pickle roll." Les Dangerfield, Economic History 1973

Students' Guild membership grows rapidly during the 1980s as the University expands.

The Lemon Grove has played host to a great number of big names, including Def Leppard in 1996.

Many of our student societies have gone on to do incredible things. A Capella Society group, Semi-Toned went on to win Voice Festival UK, 2015 and now tour internationally.

We are incredibly proud of our student engagement - in 2017 our voting turnout in the Sabbatical Elections reached a record 44%.

Photos courtesy of Special Collections, University of Exeter


University of Exeter Students' Guild is a Charity and Company Limited by Guarantee. Registered Charity Number: 1136468 Company Number: 7217324; registered in England and Wales Registered office: Devonshire House, Stocker Road, Exeter, EX4 4PZ