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During the academic year 2021–22, we will be aiming, as a Faculty, to facilitate in-person teaching and other uses of the David Williams Building, including access to the Squire Law Library, as far as possible while being mindful of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and any UK Government or University guidance in this regard. Should the public health situation or the related guidance change, arrangements for the use of the David Williams Building may need to be revised accordingly. Further information about University policies in this area can be found on the University's Stay Safe Cambridge Uni webpages.

Face coverings

In line with the University’s policy on the use of face coverings, all members of staff, students and visitors are expected to wear face coverings when in the David Williams Building unless they are exempt from doing so. The following points, in particular, should be noted:

  • Lectures and classes: Students are expected to wear face coverings in all lectures and classes that take place in the David Williams Building. Our risk assessments have been made on this basis. If face coverings were not habitually worn, the Faculty would need to reassess the viability of in-person teaching and might need to move at least some classes online. The Faculty’s risk assessments do not anticipate that lecturers will wear face coverings while teaching.
  • Squire Law Library: Those using the Squire Law Library are expected to wear face coverings (both while moving around the library and while seated at the tables in the reading/study areas).
  • Communal areas: We expect face coverings to be worn in all communal areas of the building.
  • Offices and meetings: Those who work in shared offices may remove face coverings provided that the risk assessment for the office concerned permits this and provided that all who are working in the office agree to this. Face coverings should be kept on when entering an office and removed only if those working in the office are comfortable with that. Face coverings may be removed during meetings if all present agree and if doing so is consistent with the risk assessment for the room concerned.
  • SCR/Hot-desking area outside SCR: Users of the SCR and those working at the desks in the workspace immediately outside of the SCR are permitted to remove face coverings in those areas when seated. As part of the risk assessment undertaken, it is expected that users of these spaces will wear face coverings for as much time as is possible and maintain social distancing.

Lateral flow tests

We strongly encourage all members of staff, and students who are not eligible for the asymptomatic screening programme, to take twice-weekly lateral flow tests (LFTs). You should only take these tests if you do not currently have symptoms. If you have any symptoms of COVID-19 you should book a PCR test via the University or NHS symptomatic screening service. Anyone who tests positive with an LFT should self-isolate in line with government guidance and seek a more clinically precise PCR test (i.e. a regular COVID test) through the University’s testing sites to confirm the result. You should also report to the COVID Helpdesk via the COVID monitoring form. We particularly recommend (and expect) that those organising events such as conferences or public lectures in the Faculty building will ask attendees to use LFTs prior to such an event and to attend only if they have tested negative. Further information about LFTs can be found on the University’s Stay Safe Cambridge Uni website.

Social distancing

All users of the David Williams Building are asked to exercise common sense and courtesy by maintaining an appropriate distance from other building users and, in particular, by avoiding gathering in groups in public areas of the building, such as the foyer, corridors and areas outside teaching rooms. In lectures and classes, students are strongly encouraged to spread themselves out in teaching rooms rather than clustering together, and to avoid sitting in seats and/or areas that are marked off Where seats are arranged in rows in lecture theatres, students should fill up rows from the middle in order to avoid groups of students clustering at the end of rows. Students are asked to respect any signage in teaching rooms indicating that given seats or rows are to be left vacant.

Arrival at and departure from classes and lectures

In order to avoid situations in which, for example, groups of students might end up congregating in corridors or outside teaching rooms, students are asked to arrive at classes just before they begin and to leave promptly at the end of each class. Equally, lecturers must ensure that classes end promptly so that students can leave well before the next group arrives. All lectures and classes in the Faculty begin at five past the hour and end at five to the hour (so, for example, a two-hour class that is timetabled for 10.00 am commences at 10.05 am and ends at 11.55 am). Lecturers should therefore ensure that all classes finish promptly by five to the hour.

One way and keep left systems

One-way and 'keep left' systems may be in place in some parts of the building. Where this is the case, it is clearly indicated by signage. All building users are expected to observe one-way and 'keep left' systems where they are indicated. Students should enter the main lecture theatres (LG17, LG18 and LG19) on the lower ground floor level (ie at the top of the lecture theatres) and should leave via the basement level (ie via the bottom of the lecture theatres).


Hand sanitiser stations are situated at the main entrance to the David Williams Building and key points around the building. Building users are encouraged to make use of these facilities.

Symptoms and self-isolation

If you have tested positive for Covid-19 or are otherwise required to self-isolate, you should not enter the David Williams Building until the requisite period has expired. Members of staff who develop symptoms while in the building should notify their manager and then leave work immediately, thereafter following any current guidance regarding self-isolation and testing.

Members of staff who have been identified as a household contact, or close contact of a positive case, and who are fully vaccinated are advised to seek a PCR test immediately and stay away from the workplace until the result is known. If the result is negative, they can return to the workplace but must use face coverings (including while teaching), work in well-ventilated areas and generally take a cautious approach to contact with others. Before in-person teaching can be resumed by the individual, the Faculty will need to consider the capacity of the teaching room and the size of the group so that the Faculty is satisfied that the arrangements would fall well within the current capacity of the room so that students can be seated well away from the lecturer. At the onset of any symptoms, including minor symptoms, they should self-isolate and book a PCR test via the University testing programme. Members of staff who find themselves in the circumstances outlined in this paragraph should notify the Faculty as soon as possible (by emailing so that the Faculty can take any necessary decisions.

Students who develop symptoms while in the building should leave the building immediately, notify the Faculty as soon as possible (by emailing that they developed symptoms while in the building, and thereafter follow any current guidance, including any guidance issued by their College, regarding self-isolation and testing. Anyone who, while in the building, receives a notification requiring them to begin a period of self-isolation should immediately leave the building. Students who receive such notifications during a class should immediately notify their lecturer.