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The Senate House car stunt


On 8 June 1958, Peter Davey and 11 other students at Gonville & Cauis college hoisted a derelict Austin 7 van onto the roof of the Cambridge University Senate House, in the most ingenious of student pranks.

Although the students had taken three hours under the cover of darkness to hoist the van onto the roof, it took the Civil Defence force, helped by the Police and Fire Brigade four days to remove it!

The then Dean of Gonville & Caius, the late Rev. Hugh Montefiore, having an inkling of who was responsible sent a case of champagne to “O” Staircase (the halls of residence at Gonville & Caius where Peter Davey’s room was located).

Image: by kind permission of Ivy Leswekjfe FRS and Gonville & Caius College

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