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38 Wilberforce Road, Emmanuel College Sports Pavilion

History of 8 Wilberforce Road

Listed Building

The Sports Pavilion on Wilberforce Road was built in 1910 to the designs of Reginald Francis Wheatly (1879-1959) and Edward Ford Duncanson (1880-?) of 10 Grays Inn. Their plans for the pavilion, attached house and stable were drawn up between March and May 1910 and are preserved in Emmanuel College Archives. Little is known about the architects except that Wheatly is associated with one Grade II listed building – the late C19 Church of St Andrew in Redruth, Cornwall that was completed to his designs in 1937. The ten acre site between Madingley Road and the Coton Footpath was sold by St John’s College in 1907 to be laid out as the sports grounds for Emmanuel College. The first Groundsman, William John Masters Manning (1878-1954), had been appointed in 1908 and he resided in the attached Groundsman’s House as soon as it was built. The job description stated that the Groundsman would take charge of the ground – consisting of a cricket pitch, two football grounds, a hockey ground and about ten lawn tennis courts – in addition to umpiring at all cricket matches and supplying tea on the ground. His obituary in the 1953/4 College Magazine mentions that ‘in his work at the pavilion he was always loyally supported by his first wife’. Manning remained in his post until 1947, having become a College and a City institution for the excellence of his pitches, his sporting prowess and his considerable contribution to the sporting life of Cambridge.

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