The desire of women students for separate spaces was met willingly enough, though in general they were fiercely determined to seek no concessions. Rooms for the Princess Ida Club were made available on the upper floor of the east wing of the Quadrangle building in 1888 and the colleges were quick to admit women, firstly as non-resident members and then to consider residential provision.
There were financial constraints, but with the support of Dr Leeper of Trinity College, two houses were rented in Sydney Rd for women students in 1886 and Trinity Hostel, renamed Janet Clarke Hall in 1921 for its principal benefactress, was formally opened in 1891.
The plans of the other colleges dissipated in the Depression of the 1890s. It was not until 1918 that the Catholic St Mary’s Hall was opened and even longer before the idea of a collaboration between Ormond and Queen’s colleges was realised with the opening of St Hilda’s College in 1964.
The autonomous women’s college, first suggested in the 1880s by the early women graduates took a long time to bring to fruition. After twenty years of sustained agitation Women's College [now University College] finally opened in 1937.