Winchester College Publication A Winchester Walk - Page 5

5 A Winchester Walk
Treasury in Outer Court .
Opposite is Middle Gate : in rooms above the arch , for 200 years , the Wardens of College ( heads of the Winchester College community , with a role different to that of the Headmaster ) kept a bird-eyed watch on the comings and goings of tradesmen , visitors and schoolboys . In the late 16th century , Thomas Bilson ( Warden 1576 – 96 ) moved himself out of Middle Gate and into lodgings to the east of Outer Court , to which later Wardens added a series of rooms . Though at times demanding , the role of Warden ( until 19th-century reforms swept away many of the privileges ) was attractive , not least for the food allowance that by 1629 had reached a gargantuan scale : two whole sheep a week , 100 oysters every Friday , and 15 gallons of beer per day . Today ’ s Wardens no longer live off College revenues , though they still reside in the Warden ’ s Lodgings when in College , and they have a
number of formal , social and administrative obligations which take up a great deal of time . The Lodgings are not open to visitors , but you can see their scale and splendour from the gardens at the back , accessed via Cloisters ( see below ).
Middle Gate was the centre of a pupil rebellion in 1793 , when a number of boys took control of the flat roof of the tower , arming themselves with a handful of firearms as well as cobbles dug out from the pavement of Chamber Court ( see below ). Amid much excitement , the red cap of liberty was raised ( an idea borrowed from the revolutionaries in France ), until school authority was restored and 35 Scholars expelled . According to Winchester legend , flints then replaced some of the cobbles .
View of Warden ’ s Lodgings , Chambers and Chapel from the Warden ’ s Garden .