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The Ceremony: What to Expect
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On the day – Cornwall

Your graduation day is a special occasion to celebrate your academic achievements at the University of Exeter with your friends and family. Visit our graduation preparation page to plan and prepare for your graduation. The information listed below explains all you need to know about your graduation day.

General Information:

Contact details

Our contact details are below. Should you need to contact us on the day of your ceremony, please visit the Graduation Information Desk in the Exchange Courtyard (where you register and robe) 

Information for Graduands:

Advance Requests

If you gave details of accessibility requirements during online registration or in advance of the ceremony, a member of the Cornwall Graduation Team will get in contact with you once registration has closed to discuss your requirements and confirm arrangements for you. If you or any of your guests are wheelchair users, we will be able to allocate you an appropriate seat.

Disabled Parking on Campus

There are a number of disabled parking bays available on campus for blue badge holders. Should you require an accessible parking bay please request this during Graduation Registration.


There is a drop off point in Car Park B on campus which also has limited blue badge spaces.  We will be operating a golf buggy on campus across the week - please make touch with any of the marshalls, or the Information Point within Exchange Courtyard for assistance, or advice on accessible routes around campus.

The University offers free Park and Ride transport between the campus and the Cathedral; this service is also available for disabled graduands and guests and we are able to accommodate wheelchairs if booked in advance.

Disabled Parking in Truro

There is limited opportunity for parking close to the Cathedral so please make sure you leave plenty of time to find a suitable location. Whilst parking locally may be difficult it is possible to drop off passengers at the front of the Cathedral.  We are unable to reserve disabled spaces for you in Truro.

The Stannary Refectory is open Monday-Friday serving both continental and full cooked breakfasts. Hot and cold drinks and food is also available throughout the day

Upper Stannary Bar: is open Monday-Friday offering alcohol and non-alcoholic drinks. There will be living streaming of the ceremonies from the Cathedral.

Lower Bar: is open Monday-Friday offering alcohol and non-alcoholic drinks. There will be living streaming of the ceremonies from the Cathedral.

Sustainability Café: is open Monday-Friday offering hot and cold drinks and light refreshments. There will be living streaming of the ceremonies from the Cathedral.

The Shop: is open Monday-Friday serving a wide choice of snacks, treats and general requirements

Koofi Café: is open Monday-Friday serving hot and cold beverages and a selection of cakes. Paninis and Koofi pizza’s are also available throughout the day.

Food Stalls: There will be a range of food stalls outside the Lower Stannary throughout the week offering you the range of delights our students and staff see across the academic year.


All graduates and guests are invited to join us on the Penryn Campus after your graduation ceremony to celebrate your graduation at the College Receptions. The drinks receptions will all take place in a marquee in the Italian Gardens which are located next to Tremough House.


Please be aware that dogs (except guide dogs) are not permitted inside the Cathedral or at the Reception events.

Quiet spaces on campus

You are welcome to explore our grounds and find some space for a quiet moment.  The Walled Garden in particular is rather lovely.  If you would like some recommendations please just ask one of the marshalls who will be able to guide you.

The Career Zone will be open 9am - 5pm on your graduation day. Come in and meet the Career Zone team to chat over tea, coffee and biscuits. Whether you are still deciding what type of job or industry you want to move into or you need some support with applying for roles we can discuss your next steps on the day.

Further support can be found in the meantime on our careers support for graduates webpage (link to )

Careers support | Alumni and supporters | University of Exeter

Information for Guests:


Children are welcome to attend graduation celebrations, however due to the length of the ceremony and the formal nature of the event we do not recommend that young children are brought into the Cathedral for the ceremony. Many guests with children prefer to watch the event via the live stream in the Stannary (please see the "Live Streaming Section" below for further details), which is a less formal event. Entry to the Stannary is free and no tickets are required. A separate guest ticket is required for any child over the age of two who would like to watch the ceremony in the Cathedral.

Please note that we are not able to accommodate pushchairs or buggies in the Cathedral.


Graduation live stream

Guests without tickets to the ceremony in the Cathedral are welcome to watch it via our live webstream in the Café Bar and Sustainability Café. Entry to these locations is free and no tickets are required to enter.

All guests who attend the live stream events are welcome to attend the College Receptions after the ceremony.

Professional Photography Services 

Tempest Photography is the official photographer for the University of Exeter graduation ceremonies. They will be operating multiple studios on graduation day, which will be located in the Fashion and Textiles Studios, accessed via theExchange Courtyard Building. The photography studios will be open from 8:00am to 5:00pm each day. 

You are welcome to visit them at any time on your graduation day, though to avoid large queues we recommend that you visit before your ceremony. For more details of recommended photography times, please see ourTimetable page. 

You do not need to order in advance of the ceremonies - you can simply turn up to have your photographs taken, either on your own or with your guests. Instant proofs will be given to you in the studio after your photographs are taken, enabling you to choose your favourites and to place your order online, you can visit

Presentation Photographs 

Tempest Photography will also be on hand to capture the moment you cross the stage and are awarded your degree by the Chancellor or his representative. These images will be available to view immediately after your ceremony and prints can be purchased online. You can view these on our display in our Marquee at your reception and copies are available to take away on the day. You can also visit after the event.

Large Group Photographs 

Immediately following the ceremony, the photographers will take a group photograph of all graduates in that ceremony. This will be taken outside Truro Cathedral on the grass, or in Truro Cathedral in the case of inclement weather. You can view these on our display in our Marquee at your reception and copies are available to take away on the day. You can also visit after the event.

Robe Collection

Robe collection is from Penryn Campus.  You need to have booked in advance and our robing suppliers will then have it ready for you to collect.

Robes can be collected from the Exchange Courtyard Rooms. Representatives of the University's robing suppliers will be in attendance to help you when you collect your robes. If you are collecting your robes early and will not be wearing them straight away, please consider bringing your own bag to reduce the number of plastic bags used on the day.

You can collect your robes at the following times:

10:00am Ceremonies: Between 4:00pm and 6:00pm on the day before your ceremony, or 7:30am on the day of your ceremony.

2:00pm Ceremonies: Between 10:00am and 12:00pm on the day of your ceremony.

How to wear your robe

Representatives from our robing supplier, Graduation Attire, will be on hand to help you when you collect your robe, however for those collecting in advance, there is also a helpful video guide here:

Robe Return

If you have selected 1-day hire for your robe, please ensure you return your robes to the Exchange Courtyard Rooms before the times below: 

10:00am Ceremony: Return robes by 6pm. 

2:00pm Ceremony: Return robes by 6pm.  

If you have selected 7-day hire, please send this back using the Courier pre-paid returns bag provided at gown collections by the Graduation Attire team. 

Not Yet Hired your Robe?

If you have not yet hired a robe you still can - further information is here -  University of Exeter - Graduation Gown Hire (

Please don't leave it until the day of your graduation!

The Ceremony

Arrival at the Cathedral

Doors will open thirty minutes prior to the start of the ceremony. All guests are asked to take their seats at least twenty minutes before the ceremony begins. You can check ceremony start times here and find out more about the day's timetable here.

With the exception of guests with specific requirements (please see the "Disabled Access Information" section above for more details), seats for guests are unreserved. You are welcome to sit in any seat without a reserved label on it. As Graduands are seated in a separate area of the Cathedral, it is not possible for graduands and guests to sit together.

During the Ceremony

At the beginning and end of the ceremony, please stand for the entry and exit of the processions. For a detailed Order of Ceremony showing what to expect during the proceedings, please see the information here. 

After the Ceremony

At the end of the ceremony, the graduates will process out of the Cathedral. We ask that guests remain in the Cathedral until the graduates have left, at which point you may leave via the main doors and meet the graduates outside.


Please be advised that dogs (except for trained assistance dogs) are not permitted inside the Cathedral.


Graduand and Guest Tickets

Your ticket pack will be emailed to you approximately 7 days before the ceremony. Please ensure your guests have access to their tickets to gain entry to the ceremony. We recommend that you do not print the ticket packs but have them available for viewing on an electronic device. This will save on the usage of paper and reduce the need to handle documents by hand on the day. 

Guests without Tickets

Guest who do not have tickets for the ceremony can watch the event via our live web steam on the big screens in The Upper Stannary, The Sustainability Café and the Bar. Entry is free: you do not require a ticket to enter, and all guests who watch the ceremony via the live stream are welcome to attend the Graduation Reception event after the ceremony.

The ceremonies will also be live streamed on our watch the ceremonies page.


Please click here to see the timetable for your graduation day.


Please aim to arrive in good time for your ceremony. All graduands and guests are asked to take their seats in the Cathedral as soon as possible after the doors open (30 minutes prior to the ceremony).

For detailed travel information and directions, please see our graduation preparation page.


Due to the lack of parking in Truro it is strongly advised that you use the free park and ride service that is offered to all graduands and guests between the Penryn Campus and the Cathedral (further details below).  You will have received information about this and ordered tickets in your invitation emails.

Parking will be available at the Penryn Campus and is free of charge on Graduation Day. It is best to allow ample time to park and board the coaches for Truro Cathedral.

If you are intending to park in Truro please be aware that parking is very limited and you should therefore allow extra time to find a parking space and reach the Cathedral. Information on parking in Truro can be found on this external website:

Truro also has city park and ride services running from Langarth (A30/A390, West of Truro) and Tregurra (A39/A390, East of Truro). More details can be found here.

Please note that there is no parking available at the Cathedral, and if you have decided to make your own way to the Cathedral you will need to collect your robes from Penryn campus beforehand.

Graduation Park and Ride Service

There is a free coach service between Penryn Campus and Truro for graduands and their guests. Tickets must be booked in advance and you will have the opportunity to do this when you confirm your attendance and book guest tickets.  You must bring your tickets with you on the day to make use of this service.

Coaches will depart and return from next to the Sports Hall – Car Park G on the map.

There is an approximate 10 minute walk from the drop off point in Truro to the front entrance of the Cathedral.

Coach departure times will be confirmed to you when you receive your tickets. We anticipate

10am ceremony: 8 am coach departure from Penryn campus and 11.45am departure from Truro to return to Penryn campus after the ceremony;

1.45/2pm ceremony: 12 noon coach departure from Penryn campus and 3.45pm departure from Truro to return to Penryn campus after the ceremony.

Please ensure that you print your coach e-tickets and bring them with you as you will need to present these to the coach marshals on campus. The coach marshals will then direct you to the next available coach. Please retain your tickets for the return journey.

On arrival in Truro, you will be directed from the drop-off point to the Cathedral.

After the ceremony, please assemble in the cobbled area to the front of the Cathedral and from there you will be led by the coach marshals back to the collection point. Coached will then return to campus to drop graduates and guests off in Car Park G. Upon arrival please follow signs to the graduation receptions taking place in the Italian Garden

Dress Code

For details of how to book your academic dress, please see our Graduation Preparation page.

As well as full academic dress, graduands are required to wear smart clothes on the day of the ceremony. We kindly request that you do not wear jeans or trainers. Please ensure you wear appropriate footwear for the cobbles at the Cathedral and for walking up and down the stage steps.

Our robe-makers recommend clothing that accentuates the traditional gown. Suit jackets help to puff out the shoulders, giving the hood more security. Shirts or blouses with visible top buttons are highly recommended as well, as they attach to the hood via a loop, anchoring the hood and preventing it from slipping back.

Those with long hair may wish to bring hair grips to help secure their caps.

Dress code

Guests are advised to dress as if they are going to a formal occasion. We kindly request that guests do not wear large hats which may obstruct the view of other members of the congregation. We also ask that no large banners or balloons are brought into the ceremony hall.