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British Library JLP01_11_60387_11

British Library JLP01_11_60387_11


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Additional Information

Filename: jlp01_11_60387_11.jpg

Size: 5280 x 5355 (7.5MB)

Date: 20th January 2022

Source: Historic England

Credit: A© Historic England Archive. Joh

Copyright Status: Copyrighted Work

Source: Historic England Archive

Owner URL: https://images.historicenglandservices.org.uk/

© Historic England Archive

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British Library JLP01_11_60387_11

BRITISH LIBRARY, EUSTON ROAD, ST PANCRAS, CAMDEN, GREATER LONDON. The British Library taken from the front courtyard at dusk with all the lights on inside the building.
Laing Management Contracting were appointed by The Property Services Agency to build the complex at the British Library and construction began in July 1984. In the end the project had a budget of £ 496 million and was completed in November 1995. The British Library opened to the public in November 1997 and was officially opened by the Queen in June 1998. The site brought together a collection housed across various sites and cut the wait for a book from a possible 4 days down to 20 minutes. The design by the modernist architect Colin St. John Wilson was not widely appreciated at the time but the building was listed at Grade I in 2015. The complex of buildings includes a large entrance hall, humanities and science reading rooms, a theatre, lecture halls and administration offices and 5 levels of storage basements

Historic England is the public body that champions and protects England's historic places

Media ID 24289835

© Historic England Archive

1990s Construction Floodlit Library Night


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> Industry > Engineering and Construction > Building the British Library

> The way we were > Leisure > Libraries


EDITORS COMMENTS
This print captures the iconic British Library in all its grandeur. Taken from the front courtyard at dusk, the building illuminates with a mesmerizing glow, showcasing the bustling activity within. The lights shining through the windows hint at the vast knowledge and treasures housed within this architectural marvel. Constructed by Laing Management Contracting under the supervision of The Property Services Agency, this complex project began in July 1984 and was completed in November 1995. With a budget of £496 million, it stands as a testament to human achievement and dedication. The British Library officially opened its doors to the public in November 1997 and received an esteemed visit from Queen Elizabeth II herself in June 1998. This site brought together numerous collections previously scattered across different locations, revolutionizing access to information by reducing book retrieval time from days to mere minutes. Designed by modernist architect Colin St. John Wilson, this masterpiece faced initial criticism but has since been recognized for its architectural significance, earning Grade I listing status in 2015. Beyond its magnificent exterior lies a world of knowledge encompassing humanities and science reading rooms, lecture halls, administration offices, theaters, and five levels of storage basements. This print serves as a timeless reminder of both our collective pursuit for knowledge and our ability to create awe-inspiring structures that stand as testaments to human ingenuity throughout history.

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