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Formal Hall at Oxford Summer Courses

One of the best experiences you can have in Oxford is formal hall at one of the colleges. Fortunately for you our students at Oxford Summer Courses get the opportunity to experience two formal dinners: in the tranquil setting of Somerville, or in the hallowed hall of Wadham. The etiquette of these dinners is steeped in tradition, but don't worry we are the experts and we are here to guide you through the dos and don'ts a a formal dinner at Oxford.

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Our tailored summer courses for ages 9-24 include all teaching and academic content, accommodation, meals (including Friday night formal dinners), a prize-giving ceremony, all-day trips and activities, airport transfers, access to Oxford Summer Courses Foundations, travel and medical insurance, and a welcome pack. Apply now to secure your spot in one of our comprehensive summer courses.

The first thing to think about is what to wear. These are formal dinners so this is time to dress to the nines! For men there are few options, a crisp shirt and tie, maybe a dinner jacket or even, if you have one, a kilt. For women, an evening dress would be perfect it doesn't have to be a maxi dress but we are sure whatever you pick you will look amazing! There may be some walking on lawns and grass involved so just make sure that you wear shoes that you are comfortable walking in.

We usually meet just before the sit-down dinner for drinks on the lawn and a chance to chat to your course-mates. There will be a few different choices for drinks depending on what you fancy. There will be staff members, distinguished by their academic gowns there ready to welcome you and a quick welcome speech given by the course director before we sit down for the meal. Our photographers will be there to snaps some pics of you in the grounds as well and of course there will be plenty of opportunity for you grab some snaps yourself too.

The students are invited to enter the hall first, followed by staff members who sit at a different table. The halls are delightful settings, surrounded by the portraits of the former principles and important alumni and benefactors of the colleges. It is a great way to immerse yourself in the history of the college.

Food and wine is paired by the expert caterers at the college and there will also be soft drink options if you would rather. After 3 courses are served you will be offered coffee which will also be served with the colleges own chocolates depending on which college you are dining at.

A word to the wise - remember if have multiple sets of cutlery start at the outside and work inwards (towards your plate) for each course.

The last thing to remember is enjoy yourself! Soak up the history and the tradition! We can't wait to show you around.

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After submitting your application, we'll be in touch very soon to inform you of the outcome. Apply now to begin your journey with Oxford Summer Courses!

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Discover the charm of formal hall at Oxford Summer Courses. Two elegant dinners at Somerville or Wadham. Dress to impress, mingle with course-mates, and capture memories. Immerse in college history. Indulge in expertly paired food and wine. Remember cutlery etiquette.

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Oxford Summer Courses is an organisation which contracts with the colleges of the Universities of Oxford, Cambridge and London for the use of facilities, but which has no formal connection with the Universities of Oxford, Cambridge and London.
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Oxford Summer Courses is a company registered in England and Wales with company number 08011543