The 1553 charter of King Edward VI required the school to provide accommodation for the master. This room was certainly lived in by one master and probably at least three.
Later it hosted Corporation business and Town Council meetings, becoming the Prefects’ Study in the late 19th century when the Town Council moved out.
Generations of prefects have carved their names into the top of the grand table, thought by some to have belonged to Shakespeare when he lived next door in New Place.
In the 1860s, when the ceiling was removed, two large roses were discovered on the gable. These may be very early Tudor roses (late 1480s) or Marian roses painted soon after the building was completed (1420s). A painted frieze also survives on one wall, hidden for centuries by bookcases.