The University of Surrey was where Led Zeppelin first played... on 25 October 1968.

Maximum R'n'B

Tickets appear to have been £0.37½

Having arrived back in the UK from Scandinavia (last gig 24 Sep) in time to lay down some tracks for radio broadcast on 11th Oct, the band went on to play the Marquee on the 18th Oct and Liverpool University on 19th Oct, all as The New Yardbirds, the band played their first gig as Led Zeppelin in the Great Hall* at the University of Surrey on 25th Oct 1968. Another later date is sometimes quoted as the first Led Zep gig, 9 Nov 1968 at the London Roundhouse in Chalk Farm.
The Who played University Hall at the University of Surrey on 9 October 1971.
Typically it holds fewer than 300 people. Sounds like a good gig.
You could ask either Jeff Tostevin or Dave Munro - both of them were at the show!

The Who played many other student union shows, of course, including  Leeds as heard on
Live at Leeds, which was on 14 February 1970, some 20 months before Surrey.

John Sebastian guested on harmonica with The Who at Surrey (see below).
"LED ZEPPELIN DEBUT - Led Zeppelin, the group formed by Jimmy Page after the disbandment of The Yardbirds, make their debut at Surrey University tomorrow (Friday)."  (i.e.Friday October 25th, 1968).
(This clipping can be found on page 13 of the book The Concert File by Dave Lewis and Simon Pallett.)

*Note that this first Led Zeppelin gig was in Battersea. Although the University had substantially moved out to Guildford from Battersea by this time, this gig was at the ORIGINAL university site, in Battersea Park Road.

This Marquee gig was the band's second last as the New Yardbirds. After one more at Liverpool University, they came to Surrey as Led Zeppelin, although the tickets had been printed with the old name.

Two weekends after Surrey, the band headlined at the Roundhouse, using the new name in the billing, as shown below.

Prior to Christmas 2003, a plaque to commemorate Led Zeppelin's first gig was unveiled, outside of the present University Hall.
(Surrey Matters newsletter, University of Surrey, Feb 2004)

Led Zeppelin reformed after 17 years for a one-off final gig at O2 London on 10 Dec 2007


On 20 June 2008, Dr Jimmy Page was awarded the honorary degree of Doctorate of the University of Surrey, in recognition of his services to the music industry.
The ceremony was held in the Guildford Cathedral. (Jimmy Page, Prof. Michael Kearney)

University of Surrey Press Release: as link  as image

News report on as link   as image

In conjunction with the ceremony, Jimmy signed a guitar to be given away in a competition.
Link to Led Zep Too website

The tribute band Led Zep Too played a gig at the University of Surrey in Guildford to celebrate the fortieth anniversary of the first Led Zep gig at the University.

The anniversary gig  was forty years to the day: on 25 October 2008.

It was in the Student Union and I was there, but the photos from my phone are a bit lame. Here's one of them, though... I think this was during Since I've Been Loving You...

Personally, I didn't get to see Led Zeppelin until much later than the Surrey gig... nearly 11 years later and at 20 times the price and probably 20 times the distance.

The Who I saw first, one week after Led Zep, on 18 August 1979 at Wembley Stadium and then on 29 June 1996 at Hyde Park and 2 July 2005 at Live8 again in Hyde Park.

This page published by Wilton Catford