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List Entry Summary

This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.


List entry Number: 1130404



The building may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Greater London Authority

District: Camden

District Type: London Borough


National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: I

Date first listed: 24-Oct-1951

Date of most recent amendment: Not applicable to this List entry.

Legacy System Information

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System: LBS

UID: 477883

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Building

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.


Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.



TQ3081NW GREAT RUSSELL STREET 798-1/100/697 (North side) 24/10/51 The British Museum


Museum. 1823-47. By Sir Robert Smirke with later additions. Portland stone. Planned as a big quadrangle with open courtyard extending north from Montague House (the original museum, demolished c1840). 2 main storeys in Greek Revival style. Built in stages. East Wing 1823-26: built to house George IV's library and Angerstein pictures (later basis of National Gallery). An early use of iron beams clad in concrete by engineer John Rastrick. Fine Grecian detail to interior with scagliola walls. West Wing 1831-4: built to house antiquities. Redecorated to Smirke's original colour scheme 1980. North Wing 1833-8: built to house antiquities. South Range 1842-7: built as the principal facade following the demolition of Montague House. 7-bay centre linked to projecting wings. Ionic octastyle portico with sculptured pediment projecting from a massive colonnade running around the wings. Ionic order from the temple of Athene Polias, Priene. Pediment sculpture depicts the "Progress of Civilisation" by Westmacott. Fine interior with grand central staircase. Round Reading Room 1852-7: by Sydney Smirke. Erected to fill the open quadrangle, with domed cast-iron roof. HISTORICAL NOTE: the museum expanded north during the C19, the last main addition being the King Edward VII Gallery (qv), 1914, facing Montague Place. Some of the galleries were damaged during World War II and have been remodelled for display purposes.

Listing NGR: TQ3005981712

Selected Sources

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details

National Grid Reference: TQ 30054 81721


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End of official listing