Hiatt Baker Hall is named after Hiatt Cowles Baker (1863-1934), who served as one of the University's Pro-Chancellors, from 1929 to 1934. Hiatt Baker was captain of Clifton RFC, and played rugby for England. He was a distinguished benefactor to the University, and an eminent botanist. His family home, The Holmes, is now part of Churchill Hall, another of the University's Halls of Residence in Stoke Bishop. (From 1943-44, The Holmes was the base of General Bradley and the other US generals in their preparations for the D-Day invasion of Normandy in June 1944.)
The Hall was designed by the firm of architects Percy Thomas, and was opened in 1966. It is very much of its period, the 1960s: one consequence of this is that the study bedrooms have somewhat more generous dimensions than most recently constructed student accommodation.
The Hall initially housed only male undergraduates, in common with other Stoke Bishop Halls, with female undergraduates in the Clifton Halls. This changed some 40 years ago, as it has now done for all the University's residences.
There have been eight Wardens: Peter Salway, Robert Hamilton, David Poole, John Allen, Richard Lambert, Phillip Churn, William Boyd and now Gordon Trevett. It is estimated that more than 17,000 of the University's graduates have been Hiatt Baker residents.