St Cross College COVID-19 Changes

Current Policies, as of 20 November 2020

New National Restrictions

From Thursday 5 November new National Restrictions are in place. 

College lunches will now be takeaway only, and our café will remain open for a takeaway only service. Evening meals scheduled to take place from 9 November - 2 December have now been cancelled. Please see the related tabs for further information.

Please ensure you familiarise yourself with the University's guide which includes information on how this affects teaching, sport, libraries, museums etc.




To help keep all College members safe, many College spaces are now operating with one-way systems to minimise contact, and hand sanitizing stations are available in key areas. Please follow the signage throughout the College. You should keep a social distance of 2 metres between you and anyone who is not part of your immediate household (defined here as those individuals with whom you live and/or share facilities, such as a kitchen). Sometimes if College staff or contractors are working on-site they may not be able to adhere to the one-way systems in place around College. In these cases, staff or contractors will be wearing YELLOW armbands.

From Monday 2 November: 
We will be relaxing some of the one-way systems in College to help avoid the need to use the Quad to access parts of the College, in the increasingly inclement weather. Please follow the local signage, and remember that face coverings must be worn at all times when moving around the indoor areas, and you need to observe social distancing. This also applies when you are seated in the Common Room.

To minimise numbers and to ensure a safe environment for all, we ask that all students do not enter the staff corridors in College (upstairs in the main building). If you need to speak to, meet, or see a member of staff, please email them in advance to make an appointment/arrange a time to visit. If you need to speak to a staff member urgently, please ask at the Lodge for the member of staff concerned, and the Lodge will identify the most appropriate person to speak with you. Please note: many staff members continue to work from home, so will not always be available in College.


All students have been asked to follow the COVID-19 Student Responsibility Charter and we ask that all our College members follow this Code of Conduct. If you have any concerns whilst in College about any aspect of our operations, please speak to the Duty Porter.  We look forward to seeing you soon.




Face coverings must be worn (except by those who are exempt) while in all public areas inside College buildings. Specifically, you should wear a face covering in all College indoor walkways, the Lodge, the Common Room, study areas, shared public bathrooms, staff offices, the Dining Hall (except when eating and drinking), the Library (at all times), and in student accommodation buildings (except in areas part of your own household).

If you are resident in student accommodation you do not need to wear a face covering in your own household bubble unless you are self-isolating. If you are self-isolating, you must wear a face covering at all times when not in your own room.

You do not need to wear a face covering in outdoor areas of the College, although many people may choose to do so, and staff do not need to wear a face covering when seated and working in their own offices.

Please also remember that external guests are currently not permitted inside College buildings.

Additional information from the University can be found here.


The College remains closed to non-St Cross members, which means that at this time we are unable to welcome guests to lunches, College events, and for social gatherings, including meeting informally in the Common Room. Accommodation areas are strictly limited to residents only. As students move into accommodation, they are permitted to have help from family members and friends, but we ask that all visitors wear face coverings and leave the premises as soon as moving in is completed. They cannot use communal areas and shared spaces. No guests are allowed to stay in College accommodation at this time, and College residents should only use shared facilities associated with their household.

The only exceptions for guests and visitors to College is when they are attending a pre-arranged professional College event or meeting. For example, a University department will be using some of our seminar rooms during the term, and there will be occasional private events in College for College members and their registered guests. We cannot open lunches and our own dinners to guests at this time, as places are limited and we wish to ensure that as many College members as possible can enjoy these events.

Students, Fellows or Members of Common Room who are looking to arrange events or meetings of any size in College should contact to discuss their needs. This ensures that space can be allocated appropriately, contact tracing can be maintained, and that College complies with health and safety regulations and social distancing requirements. Contractors will also be on-site from time-to-time to ensure essential maintenance is completed. All contractors will comply with social distancing regulations.

Contractors will also be on-site from time-to-time to ensure essential maintenance is completed. All contractors will comply with social distancing regulations. Contractors can be recognised by the blue hi vis jackets they wear and coloured lanyards. If contractors are required to enter student bedrooms (advance notice will be given) they will be wearing yellow lanyards. Contractors not requiring bedroom access will be wearing a green lanyard.

Sometimes, if College staff or contractors are working onsite, they may not be able to adhere to the one-way systems in place around College. In these cases, staff or contractors will be wearing green armbands.


COVID-19 test

If you have COVID-19 symptoms (high temperature, new continuous cough, change/loss of smell/taste), please remember to use the University's COVID-19 Early Alert Testing Service.

University staff and students should use this service rather than the NHS service to ensure that the local community can continue to access tests through the NHS.

By using the University service we are also alerted about your test so that we can provide any support that you may need. If for any reason you do use the NHS Testing service (or any other provider) and receive a positive COVID-19 test result, please complete this form.

We would also like to remind all students that they should be registered with a GP (doctor) in Oxford and this is particularly important at this time. If you need details about registering with a GP, please find information here.

About the testing service

The University operates an in-house COVID-19 testing service for University members (staff and students) who have coronavirus symptoms. This service is free, aligned with NHS and PHE guidelines, and specially designed for the University’s needs. If you are experiencing coronavirus symptoms, book a test here:

After you have requested a COVID-19 test, you will receive a confirmation email from the University testing service. Staff, students and Fellows must forward this email to the College porters ( immediately. This will ensure the College can notify others with whom you may have come in to contact with in College spaces.

Tests are administered in the Radcliffe Observatory Quarter in North Oxford and at the Old Road Campus in Headington. You will be notified which place will administer your test when you book.

Please note that this service is ONLY for members of the University who are experiencing coronavirus symptoms or who have been in contact with someone who has tested positive. It is not to be used in any other circumstance.


In certain circumstances, such as if you have recently travelled from overseas, if someone in your household has tested positive for COVID-19, or you are waiting for the results of a test, you may be required to self-isolate. 
Please read the self-isolation guide (SSO required).


If you are self-isolating/quarantining in College accommodation, please ensure you follow the procedures below: 
•    Put the notice on the outside of your bedroom door informing other that you are quarantining.
•    Wear you face mask at all times whilst you are in any communal areas (including all kitchens while cooking)
•    You must not use the kitchen while others are using it (during your period of Quarantine)
•    If you have asked for a repair or maintenance request you must leave the room while this is taking place and wait in the kitchen, if there is someone else in the kitchen then, maintenance will be re arranged until a time that you can wait in the kitchen. You must inform the maintenance operative when they arrive that you are quarantining and go to the kitchen. (please note that only emergency repairs will be carried out to your room while you are quarantining)
•    Once your period of Quarantine has finished please remove the notice from outside your door.


The Common Room is still open for use. You should sanitise your hands before entering and using the Common Room and then sit by yourself. No groups are permitted in the Common Room. You should remain socially distanced and wear a face covering at all times.


Desks in the Library

To access study spaces in the library, a desk booking system for readers is in operation. If you would like to book a desk, please email by 1 pm on the day before you would like to visit the Library, or by 1pm on Friday for weekend bookings.

A Click and Collect service for all St Cross members is also available. If you would like to consult a book from our Library, sign in to SOLO, find the book you need and select Click and Collect. We will then retrieve the book for you and leave it in your pigeonhole. Once you've finished with it, please return it to the Porters Lodge. Alternatively, you can email the library with any such requests and they will facilitate this for you. 

Additional information on the College library is available here.

Face coverings

We ask that face coverings be worn at all times in the library, unless you're exempt under government guidelines.


Lunch Update: 20 November 2020

Due to the latest National Restrictions in effect from 5 November 2020, the College is unable to provide sit-down meals. 

Lunches will now be takeaway only, and there will be no evening meals. The café is now closed.

From Monday 9 November you will be able to collect a takeaway lunch which you will need to book through the meal booking system. This will now open on a Wednesday at 08:30 for the following week, and bookings must be made by 14:00 the day before you wish to collect your lunch (14:00 Friday for a lunch on Monday). You must return to your home/room to eat, in accordance with Government guidance. The College cannot allow students to eat or drink in any public areas.


The below information relates to College lunch provision before 5 November 2020

College lunches have resumed but we have made a number of changes to ensure safety for all. Members who wish to eat lunch in College should book a place here using their email address (if you need to reset your password, you can do so here). You will be able to see the weekly menu when booking your place.

Booking information update: 15 October 2020

Bookings for lunch will now open on a Friday at 08:30 for the following week. You may book for all your lunches at once, rather than on a day-by-day basis. Bookings for lunch will close once they are full, or at 14:00 the day before lunch (14:00 Friday for lunch on a Monday). If you find you are no longer able to attend lunch, you must cancel your place by 14:00 the day before your booked lunch, otherwise you will still be charged. No-shows at lunch will also be charged to your battels account. We would also like to remind you to arrive promptly for your booked lunch as sessions are 30 minutes, to allow staff to thoroughly clean the dining hall areas before the next sitting.

  • Guests are not permitted until further notice.
  • A one-way system is in place in the dining hall, and the catering team is taking extensive measures to ensure that everyone can eat safely and comfortably.
  • Face coverings should be worn as you enter the Hall and when seated at the table you should place your face covering on your lap.
  • Chairs must not be moved or re-arranged as they have been set to comply with social distancing regulations. 

Additional information on College lunches is available here.  


Table laid for Hall

Dinners, Halls and suppers scheduled to take place from 9 November - 2 December have been cancelled. Pub nights have also been cancelled.

Details of introductory dinners, Halls and Special Dinners can be found on the termly calendar.

These can all be booked via the booking system. 



The café is now closed (from Monday 23 November).


There will be no Bar service in College for the time being.



The College coffee machines are currently not in operation.

We are making the pianos in the bar and Common Room available once more to those who wish to use them. Please use the sanitising equipment provided to clean the piano before and after use. Please be considerate to other users when using the piano in both areas, and limit your practice to a reasonable length of time (we suggest no more than 30 minutes) as the noise does carry to student rooms and staff offices. Pianos should not be used between the hours of 22:00 and 08:00.




Outdoor Areas, Gardens, and Smoking

Outdoor areas in College grounds, including the Quads on the main site, and outdoor spaces at the Annexe and Stonemason House, are public areas, and not private gardens or grounds. This means that these public areas need to be used in line with local and national regulations for public spaces. Public areas should not be used by anyone who is self-isolating. Face coverings are not mandatory in outdoor public spaces but some people may feel more comfortable if face coverings are worn in these areas.

As all of our outdoor spaces are relatively small, we ask that groups do not congregate and gather in outdoor spaces, unless you are attending College-organised formal events. For residents living in houses owned by St Cross College (Wellington Square and Bradmore Road) all residents of these properties may use the associated private gardens, but no guests or visitors are allowed into these properties, including the gardens.

Smoking is not allowed anywhere on College property, including in outdoor spaces.

For general information and questions about College accommodation please visit our Accommodation website pages and our Accommodation for Offer Holder pages. 

For students in College accommodation notices have gone up in all kitchens over the last couple of days indicating which Covid Bubble can use which kitchen. Please ensure you only enter and use the kitchen associated with your room number. The names of your fellow residents who form your Household/Covid Bubble have been provided to you. There is a space on these posters for you to add your mobile number (if you wish) and set up a WhatsApp group to keep in touch and meet your fellow housemates.

Cleaning products will be delivered to your rooms and left outside your door so please take them in when you see them. Inside the red buckets are various cleaning products and a safety sheet which you must  read. If you run out of any cleaning products please email Kenny Cox ( who will arrange for replacements. 

As the College is no longer able to provide its usual catering services, and to encourage exercise and socialisation during lockdown, we are starting a Walking Buddy Programme for current students.

If you would like to sign up, we'll pair you with another student, and you can arrange to go for a socially-distanced walk and chat. If you would like to purchase a coffee and cake whilst you're out, send us a photo (to and we'll reimburse you with £5 from the KT Soo Bursary (this fund usually provides lunches to students). 

To to take part, please fill in this form.