The refurbishment and reorganisation of The Royal Society’s buildings entailed making better use of a unique set of Listed Grade I Nash buildings by providing a coherent, high profile, architectural setting for the society’s activities. The project also provided an opportunity to reveal more effectively the story of a piece of London’s architectural heritage.
The completed development provides additional facilities for exhibitions, scientific meetings, seminars, media events and video conferencing. A key intervention was the creation of a new atrium in a former light well on the upper levels as a focus to the new offices, which optimise the use of space within the envelope of the Listed Grade I terrace.
The project was carried out under a logistically-complex phased contract, enabling The Royal Society to remain in occupation, the continuation of The Society’s programme of conferences and scientific meetings, and ensuring continued access for Fellows to the reference library.
The project was recognised in the RIBA Awards, sponsored by the Crown Estate, with a Conservation Commendation.
Burrell Foley Fischer have continued to act as the Society’s architects for subsequent phases, including the refurbishment of the Welcome Trust Lecture Theatre, the Dining Room, the Catering Kitchen and the Society’s Library, to create the Centre for the History of Science.