Building transformation updates

Building transformation project updates from the Development team

Interview with the President about our plans and fly through the new spaces

February 2024

The Chair of the Art Committee and our Curator, Librarian and Archivist discuss plans for a re-hang of the Academy's art collection to incorporate the new lower floor spaces. Read more here.

Anthony Frost, Abba Zabba Blue
Anthony Frost, Abba Zabba Blue

February 2024

The British Academy's Chief Executive, Hetan Shah explains how the transformation of the Academy's lower floors into event spaces will help the Academy to deliver its strategic priorities. Read more here.

Front page from Strategic Plan 2023

January 2024

The architects, Wright & Wright, explain their approach to accessibility in the redesign of our lower floors at 10-11 Carlton House Terrace. Read more here.

British Academy lecture

September 2023

Stephen Smith, the lead architect on the building transformation project, has written a piece about Wright & Wright's approach to sustainability in imagining and delivering the new spaces. Read more here.

Sally Shuttleworth interviewed Rana Mitter and Matt King-Woodward about their plans for a reinvigorated programme of public events in the new spaces. Read more here.

June 2023

Photographer Greg Allen visited the lower ground floors for the third time to capture the progress that the contractors have made. There's still a long way to go but as walls and ceilings come down we are starting to see the new spaces take shape... photo updates to the building transformation images page will be uploaded shortly...

May 2023

The President, Julia Black, Chief Executive, Hetan Shah, and Vice President, Conor Gearty, signed a deed into the Academy's bye laws, confirming the Academy's intention to name the new atrium, which will provide access to the new state-of-the-art spaces in the lower ground floors, the Wohl Atrium. The trustees of the Maurice Wohl Charitable Foundation have generously agreed to donate £1 million to the British Academy towards the redevelopment of its headquarters at 10-11 Carlton House Terrace. The Academy's seal was used to officially mark the document.

Three people stand around a large metal contraption with a rotating arm.
The President, Chief Executive and Vice President seal the new deed

March 2023

At the end of March the Development Board visited the lower ground floors before their meeting to see the progress that has been made. They were shown around by Maeve, from architects Wright and Wright, and saw that a huge amount of progress has been made. Excitingly, they were able to catch a glimpse of just how high the ceilings will be in the new spaces, as the mezzanine floor has now been removed in part of one of the new spaces. There has also been progress on the ground floor, where the rear lobby of number 10 (pictured) is being reconfigured to give better access and visibility to existing and new spaces.

In February our photographer, Greg, visited the lower ground floors to see what progress has been made so far. The changes are quite dramatic, so we've put together a selection of his photos to show the 'before' and 'after' the first phase of work. We will update this page as work moves on.

November 2022

In November 2022 the Academy broke ground on the programme of work to transform the basement spaces of its home on Carlton House Terrace. The programme of works is expected to last 12 months, with the re-opening of the spaces planned for Spring 2024. Towards the end of the month the Development team made a hard hat visit to the basement to see the vast amount of progress that has already been made in just a short few weeks. Heavy work, including removing walls and knocking through from the basement to the mezzanine level, is expected to take place in the first part of 2023, and the team hope to make another visit to see the new spaces when they have been knocked through.

An image of seven people in hard hats in a building site
The Development team in the basement, November 2022

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