175th Anniversary of the College
In 2004 King’s College London celebrated its 175th anniversary. A special programme of events reflected the distinguished history of the College and its continued excellence in research and teaching.
The overriding principle was that events should be open to all, and free. The theme of many events emphasised the College's work in the service of society, echoed in the title of the new College history published in February 2004.
Formal celebratory events
In January, the Commemoration Oration by Archbishop Desmond Tutu revived a King's tradition. It attracted an audience of over 800 and considerable media interest, necessitating video relays to the Chapel and two lecture theatres.
In October a Service of Thanksgiving was held at Westminster Abbey and attended by HRH the Princess Royal, Chancellor of the University of London, with an inspiring sermon given by the Archbishop of Canterbury.
A series of lunchtime talks King’s people who changed the world by distinguished biographers proved extremely popular with 80-110 people attending each session.
The Archives Department produced exhibitions of historical material throughout the College and online.
At the beginning of the year, over 400 staff and students took part in anniversary ice skating sessions at Somerset House, next to the Strand campus.
Beating Retreat involved 150 performers and was attended by over 600 people. The evening included a recreation of the Duke of Wellington's duel at the foundation of King's and a spectacular firework display.
An Alumni Weekend in June attracted over 800 people to an events including a boat race, a debate and a ball. An anniversary Film Festival 'Alumni In Word and Image' took place in October.
As well as annual College lectures, a series of symposia over the year exploring the notion of 'Citizenship' was addressed by several distinguished speakers.
An anniversary Student Debate considered the future of university funding.
A symposium 'Global Partnerships For Science And Health' was held at the Guy’s hospital campus, attracting over 160 delegates from sixteen countries, including many senior staff from other universities.
The Dental Institute organised a major event entitled 'Global Perspectives of the GKT Dental Institute' as part of the celebrations.
The Widening Participation Office organised a Staff Volunteering Week in June, when staff gave their time to work in the local community.
The College's close involvement with Somerset House over the 1604 Celebrations highlighted the College’s anniversary with neighbours and with a wide public audience.