The decision will see standard membership prices rise from £230 to £300Louis Ashworth for Varsity

The Cambridge Union has increased its membership price to £300 amid financial pressures, marking a £70 increase. 

The new rate will be implemented in Michaelmas term, Varsity understands. 

The hike in fees comes as a response to “persistent inflation and growing upkeep costs,” the Union has said, with the debating society having sought “professional financial advice” about its situation. 

The decision was approved by the Union’s standing committee, which includes the president and debates, speakers, equalities, and social events officers. 

A source close to the Union told Varsity that this £70 price rise is a result of “years of bad financial decisions in the Union,” which have made it “more difficult” for the society to “complete infrastructural repairs and maintain staff numbers”. 

“It appears likely that, on the current trajectory, we will end up at the same financial peril the Oxford Union currently faces,” they said. 

“The price raise appears designed to combat declining revenue from failed membership drives, but whether incoming freshers will want to join an organisation requiring such a high price for entrance is debatable,” the student continued.

The membership price rise comes after the current President, Nick Davis, decreased access memberships to £90 earlier this term. 


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This access price will stay in place, and the Union is currently offering reduced-price membership before the fee hike takes effect. 

The Cambridge Union told Varsity: “The Union has raised the price of lifetime membership to £300. As of today lifetime memberships are discounted to £190 and will be into Easter term. All other memberships including our £90 access membership have not changed in price.”

“This decision has not been taken lightly and with the consideration of professional financial advice but the economic climate and increasing upkeep costs of our Grade-II listed building have necessitated action to preserve the financial stability of the Union going forward,” the society said.