The Chapel is one of three buildings at Marlborough College which can hold the entire school which numbers approximately 860 pupils. The school was founded in 1843 for the education of the sons of the clergy and although now its religious character is ecumenical and the college welcomes all faiths to the school, its tone is set by the teachings of the Church of England. The Chapel therefore is at the heart of the College. The original Chapel by Edward Blore was dedicated in 1848 and was built for a school of 500 boys and a relatively small staff. The proportions were said to be unsatisfactory and it was soon found to be too small. By the beginning of the last quarter of the century it was discovered that the original building was most unsatisfactory with very little foundation and insufficient mortar.
A new Chapel to the designs of Bodley and Garner was built in Bath and Sarsen stone in 1883-6. It is most graceful being both long and tall. It has a stained glass window by William Morris and is considered one of the finest public school Chapels in the country. It is a beautiful building, built in the Victorian Gothic style, with pre-Raphaelite paintings by J R Spencer Stanhope and an exceptionally fine 62 stop four-manual pipe organ.
The Memorial Hall being for the moment out of commission while it receives a root and branch upgrade, this year's concerts will in some cases use The Ellis Theatre. Named after Roger Ellis (Master through the 70s), it is built over the site of the old open-air swimming pool, which reputedly occupied part of the moat surrounding the old Norman Castle on The Mound and provided medieval swimming conditions that were said to be invigorating and character-forming.