Of the 757 venues that will be opening their doors for next month’s Open House Weekend, a small number need to be booked in advance – a policy that usually leads to panic stricken trawling through their website on Monday morning when the booking system opens.

Or you can just read the list below that I have prepared for you lovely people (subject to caveat emptor in case I made any mistakes).

The BT Tower is open this year again, but that is by email ballot, so NOT part of the Monday morning rush.

Many of the venues are booked on Monday morning via their website, but quite a lot need to be phoned or sent an email instead, so to help prioritising your Monday morning panic, email and telephone bookings are highlighted below.

The rest are booked via the website form from about 10am.

Good luck on Monday morning!

Barking and Dagenham

Barking Central I & II

Barking Central incorporates a Learning Centre framed by a colonnade and topped by two parallel housing blocks and a wooded public square designed by Muf. Built in two phases, phase II completes the masterplan by connecting the colonnade to an existing street and shopping centre with bike store and shop building. Other new buildings reset the new wooded square in an open frame. RIBA London Award Winner 2011.

Meet: Sat 11am at Barking Learning Centre, 2 Town Square IG11 7NB
Sat 11am-1pm.

Becontree Heath Leisure Centre

This brand new state-of-the-art leisure centre contains a 10 lane 25 x 25m pool, a learner pool, a 4 court sports hall and a 100 station gym. A play area and community space ensures all areas of the population are catered for.

Althorne Way, Dagenham RM10 7FH
Sat 10am-1pm/Sun 10am-1pm.

Closed Loop Recycling

CLR is a state of the art plastic bottle recycling facility, 35,000 tonnes of waste plastic bottles are recycled per year into food-grade plastic used to manufacture new food and beverage packing. Many green design features with a BREEAM ‘very good’ rating.

16 Choats Road, Dagenham RM9 6LF
Sat 10am-5pm.

The Broadway

Original theatre recently modernised with striking but sympathetic new double-height foyer space, preserving the original facade which now forms part of interior.

Broadway, Barking IG11 7LS
Sat 10am-5pm.


19 Spaniards End

An inspiring new 3 storey house set within a conservation area, houses an impressive collection of contemporary art and ancient ceramics. An exemplar of sustainable design. Use of natural light, textured concrete surfaces, sliding screens and timber cladding create a ‘landscape’ of elements which respond to the natural character of the site, changing weather conditions and the seasons.

Spaniards End (off Spaniards Road) NW3 7JG
Sat 10am-5pm/Sun 10am-1pm.

Middlesex University – Hendon Campus, The College Building

An innovative glass and steel roof was added to the original 1930s quadrangle creating a landmark space for students and staff to meet in a modern environment with a traditional backdrop. The project included the complete refurbishment of all teaching facilities.

The Burroughs, Hendon NW4 4BT
Sat 1pm-5pm.

Wrotham Park

A privately-owned Grade II listed Palladian mansion with grand interiors restored in 1883, set in 300 acres of parkland in the midst of 2,500 acres. Built for Admiral The Hon. John Byng.

Wrotham Park, Barnet EN5 4SB
Sun 10am-5pm.


Stonebridge Estate walk

The development and implementation of a masterplan to replace approximately 1700 dwellings in high rise blocks with new homes, providing a mix of family houses and flats laid out as traditional street pattern.

Meet: Harlesden Rail Station, Acton Lane, NW10 7AA
Sat 1pm-4pm.
Tours at 1pm, 2pm, 3pm and 4pm.

Underground Bunker, Neasden [I’ve been here]

Underground 1940s bunker used during WWII by Winston Churchill and the Cabinet. Purpose-built of reinforced concrete, totally bomb-proof subterranean war citadel 40 feet below ground, with Map Room, Cabinet Room and offices, housed within a sub-basement protected by a 5ft thick concrete roof.

Brook Road NW2 7DZ
Sat 8.30am-5pm.

Zog House

A modest contemporary family house built with the revolutionary Solidspace split-section, which takes open plan living from the horizontal to the vertical and aims to establish a new housing typology for the 21C. Shortlisted RIBA Awards 2010. Sustainable features include rainwater harvesting, solar panels, high insulation and mvhr.

1a Donaldson Road NW6 6NA
Sat 10am-1pm.


Bromley and Sheppard’s College

Founded to house the widows of clergymen, the original building consisted of 20 houses built around a classically-styled quadrangle. Captain Richard Ryder – one of Sir Christopher Wren’s surveyors – was in charge of design and construction.

London Road (entrance via Wren Gates, no vehicle entry), Bromley BR1 1PE
Sat 1.30pm-4.30pm.

Camden Place (Chislehurst Golf Club)

Early 18C mansion and home of Napoleon III 1870-80. Brick facade, early 18C Dutch wall paintings and breakfast room with exquisite original plaster ceiling by James Stuart. Golf Club from 1894.

Camden Park Road, Chislehurst BR7 5HJ
Sat 10am-12noon/Sun 10am-12noon.

Lubbock’s Landscape at High Elms Country Park

Walk taking in the remains of the High Elms Estate mansion (burnt down 1967) a classical Italian style country house owned by the Lubbock family. Interior viewing of the existing Victorian stable block, coach house, ice well and kitchen garden.

Meet: Sun 3m at High Elms Country Park, Main Car Park, High Elms Road (off Shire Lane), near Downe BR6 7JH
Sun 3pm-5pm.

The Berresford House

Set in woodland on a sloping site its cedar-clad timber-framed construction was ahead of its time. Resisting radical change, the house is often used for photo-shoots and has recently been listed. ‘Perfect house’ – Grand Designs.

Brooklyn, Lodge Road, Bromley BR1 3ND
Sun 10am-5pm.

The Odeon, Beckenham

Art Deco cinema with proscenium arch, stained glass windows and typically Deco mouldings.

High Street, Beckenham BR3 1DY
Sat 9.30am-10.30am/Sun 9.30am-10.30am.


17a Mansfield Road

Radical reworking of end of terrace Benson & Forsyth maisonette. Stripped back to concrete structure, the living spaces have been moved to the upper level to open onto the roof terrace.

17a Mansfield road NW3 2JE
Sat 11am-5pm.

78 South Hill Park

‘This is a building that pinpoints a moment in which Britain was at the forefront of a rethinking of the aesthetics and meaning of modernism. A singular work of an incredibly fertile mind. Each room is deceptively complex. The house is an extraordinary personal statement of intent.’ Edwin Heathcote (2011).

78 South Hill Park NW3 2SN
Sat 10am-5pm.

8 Kendalls Hall

Private house conversion displaying a holistic approach to architecture, interior, furniture and movement design. A site specific installation based on various stages of the site’s life will bring together and pull apart the different layers of this place-making.

8 Kendalls Hall, New End NW3 1DD
Sun 1pm-5pm.

84 South Hill Park

One of a block of 6 structurally co-dependent 4 storey houses built on a stunning Heathside site. Architects HKP&A were strongly influenced in proportion and materials by Corbusier. In 2010 Tom Brent refreshed the property in the spirit of the initial concept and materials.

84 South Hill Park NW3 2SN
Sat 10am-5pm.


Arlington House was the last of a series of a new type of London hostel created by Lord Rowton, a Victorian philanthropist. An imposing building, it houses 95 flats for homeless people and 35 low rent flats for local workers. In the last stage of refurbishment, the lower and ground floors have been opened up with a new restaurant, artist studios, training facilities and conference suites.

220 Arlington Road NW1 7HE
Sat 10am-1pm.

Dr Williams’s Library

One of the oldest libraries open to the public still conducted on its original benefaction. Pre-eminent research collection of English Protestant nonconformity. Originally designed as a hall of residence for students, the building retains Gothic style stone imperial type stairs, stained glass windows and cast-iron gallery.

14 Gordon Square WC1H 0AR
Sat 10am-3pm.
NB. No children under 12.

Government Art Collection

Guided tour of premises and behind-the-scenes look at how this major collection of British art operates.

Queen’s Yard, 179a Tottenham Court Road W1T 7PA
Sat 10am-5pm/Sun 10am-5pm.

Gray’s Inn

700 year old legal collegiate institution. Hall includes 16C screen. Much of Inn redesigned in neo-Georgian style by Sir Edward Maufe after 1941 bombing.

Gray’s Inn WC1R 5ET
Sun 10am-2pm.

London King’s Cross Station

The Eastern Range buildings part of the Grade I listed Victorian station have been recently restored under English Heritage’s supervision. The new steel and glass concourse is due to open in 2012. Sustainable features include PV panels and temperature regulating cladding.

East Side Offices, King’s Cross Station, York Way N1 9AP
Sun 1pm-5pm.

City of London

1 Finsbury Circus

This Lutyens Grade II listed building has been comprehensively redeveloped to provide a high quality contemporary interior, with a fully glazed spectacular atrium roof to maximize daylight and aspect.

1 Finsbury Circus EC2M 7EB
Sat 10am-1pm/Sun 10am-1pm.

4 Bayer House

Part of Golden Lane Estate which was the first public housing to be listed. A maisonette with many of the original detail and finishes.

Golden Lane Estate EC1Y 0RN
Sun 11am-5pm.

Blackfriars Bridge River Tour

As part of the Thameslink Programme, Blackfriars station is being redeveloped and is due for completion in 2012. New platforms will span the river, with a new station entrance for the south bank, whilst the north station will be upgraded, improving passenger access. Sustainable features include sun pipes, rain harvesting systems, thermal insulation, PV cell solar panels.

Meet: Blackfriars Pier Old pump House Paul’s Walk EC4V 3QR
Sun 2pm-4pm.

Clothworkers’ Hall

Home to The Clothworkers’ Company, founded in 1528, Clothworkers’ Hall is the sixth livery hall to stand upon the site. The interiors evoke the history of English Classicism from Wren to the present day and include portraits of notable Clothworkers – including Samuel Pepys – and a stunning set of 18C Brussels tapestries.

Dunster Court, Mincing Lane EC3R 7AH
Sat 10am-5pm.

Fishmongers’ Hall

Fishmongers’ Hall is a rare example of a Greek Revival town building featuring an arcaded granite base and a riverside terrace. Designed by the architect Henry Roberts (1831-5), a student of Sir Robert Smirke, the Hall’s classical simplicity is contrasted by the magnificence of its interior rooms.

London Bridge EC4R 9EL
Sat 10am-5pm.

Golden Lane Estate

Grade II listed estate by architects of the Barbican, and recognised to be of special architectural and historical interest. Early exemplar of British modernist architecture originally intended as accommodation for key City workers it has undergone many transformations during the course of its life.

Meet: Sun 11am at EXHIBIT at Golden Lane Estate, 20 Goswell Road EC1M 7AA
Sun 11am-1pm.

Landscape Institute London Walk: The Liveable City of London

An exploration of the new landscapes in the City of London meeting the needs of shoppers, city workers and residents.

Meet: Sun 1pm outside City of London Information Centre, St Paul’s Churchyard EC4M 8BX
Sun 1pm-3pm.

Mansion House (book by sending a letter in the post)

Residence of the City of London’s Lord Mayor, retaining its 18C character, with superb plasterwork and wood carving. (IanVisits note – is also open for paid tours every Tuesday lunchtime).

Walbrook EC4N 8BH
Sat 9am-5pm/Sun 9am-5pm.

St Bride Foundation Institute

Built as a printers’ institute in the Anglo-Dutch style, in red brick with sandstone dressings, steeply pitched tiled roof and Dutch gables. Once home to a swimming pool, many of the original features can still be seen. Special display on sporting heritage. The pool, the presses, the debates, the parties – for over a century this unique venue has been home to a slice of Fleet Street life.

Bride Lane, Fleet Street EC4Y 8EQ
Sat 10am-1pm/Sun 1pm-5pm.

Tower 42

The City of London’s tallest occupied building, consisting of three hexagonal chevrons, at 601ft was the first to break previous restrictions on tall buildings in London. During a comprehensive refurbishment in 1995, a new glass and steel entrance hall was built on Old Broad Street and the external steel cladding was replaced.

25 Old Broad Street EC2N 1HQ
Sat 10am-3pm.

Watermen’s Hall (book by sending a letter in the post)

Only remaining Georgian Hall in the City of London, and perfect example of domestic architecture of the period.

18 St Mary-at-Hill EC3R 8EF
Sat 9am-2.30pm.


Fairfield Halls

One of the few surviving examples of a major early post-war concert hall and arts centre in the country and is reputed for its excellent acoustics. Built in a style similar to the Royal Festival Hall, it houses a 1794 seat concert hall and 763 seat theatre.

Park Lane CR9 1DG
Sat 10am-1pm.

Old Palace [I’ve been here]

Grade I listed manor house, former summer residence of Archibishops of Canterbury from 13C-18C. Elizabeth I and other monarchs regularly visited. Contains one of the finest great halls with its original roof from 1440s. (IanVisits note – is also open occasionally during the rest of the year)

Old Palace Road, Old Town CR0 1AX
Sat 2.30pm-3.30pm.

Whitgift Almshouses

Tudor almshouses dating from 1596 and founded by the Archbishop of Canterbury John Whitgift. Chapel and Courtyard with original 16C clock.

North End, Croydon CR9 1SS
Sat 10am-4pm.


22 Mount Pleasant Road

A large contemporary garden extension strikingly juxtaposed with ‘eco friendly’ whole house refurbishment. Suspended frameless glazing sits ingeniously over dramatic full width cornerless sliding doors. A close collaboration between architect and interior designer client. Sustainable features: passive thermal measures, high tech glazing, high efficiency underfloor heating, rainwater harvesting and garden studio with sedum roof.

22 Mount Pleasant Road W5 1SG
Sat 10am-5pm.

Zero Carbon Loft

‘An eco-refurbishment project which crammed in just about every energy- and water-saving device known to man whilst highlighting the importance of retrofitting existing buildings.’ Alistair McGowan.

38a Cumberland Road, Hanwell W7 2EB
Sat 10am-5pm/Sun 10am-1pm.


Priory Hospital North London

Grade I listed neo-classical villa designed for Walker Gray. Grounds laid out by Repton. Elegant trompe l’oeil breakfast room.

Grovelands House, The Bourne N14 6RA
Sun 10am-12noon.


Boat Tour – Engineering East London

Discover how engineers are shaping east London on a Thames Clipper river tour from the 02 to Tilbury, with live commentary from London’s leading engineers and regeneration experts.

Meet: North Greenwich Pier (the O2), Peninsula Square SE10 0PE for prompt 2pm departure
Sat/Sun 2pm-4pm.


39 Parkholme Road

Minimal and green remodelling of a Victorian terraced family house, incorporating exceptional thermal efficiency, solar heating and water recycling throughout the original structure and a new copper and glass box extension.

39 Parkholme Road E8 3AG
Sat 10am-5pm.

Adelaide Wharf

A pioneering mixed tenure residential scheme with some workspace extruded into a prototype block, folded to create a U-shaped court. Each apartment has an outdoor room part hung, part cantilevered out over the streets, courtyard or canal. Facade is composed of layers of roughly sawn larch that makes reference to the warehouses of packing crates that once occupied this site. RIBA Award Winner 2008.

118/120 Queensbridge Road (at junction Whiston Road) E2 8PD
Sat 10am-4pm.

Dalston Regeneration Walk

Dalston Town is undergoing massive regeneration and investment. This walk with the borough regeneration officers and town centre coordinators will focus on new developments including Dalston Square development, Gillett Square, Eastern Curve Gardens and Bootstrap building.

Meet: outside Dalston CLR James Library, Dalston Sq E8 3DD
Sat 1pm-5pm/Sun 1pm-5pm.

Stoke Newington Town Hall

After an extensive restoration project, Stoke Newington Town Hall has been restored to its former Art Deco glory. Funded by Hackney Council, the building has a stunning assembly hall, complete with original sprung Canadian maple dancefloor and a beautifully renovated council chamber with original gold cornicing, wood panelling and vaulted domed ceiling.

Stoke Newington Church Street N16 0JR
Sun 10am-4pm.

Hammersmith and Fulham

BBC Television Centre

Note – booking not open until 10th August.

World’s first purpose-built television studios, designed by Graham Dawbarn in 1960 – including famous statue of Helios and John Piper mural. Famous studios are grouped around the distinctive circular central building well-known from its regular on-air coverage.

Wood Lane W12 7RJ
Sun 10am-5.30pm.
No inside photography or filming.

BBC White City Media Village

Note – booking not open until 10th August.

A vibrant complex regenerating the area, featuring art by Yuko Shiraishi. Works on broadcasting by previous Poet Laureate Andrew Motion and graphic designer John Morgan are inlaid into the street running through the centre of the complex. Commemoration of site as home of old White City Stadium which held 1908 Olympics. Home of BBC Worldwide.

Wood Lane W12 7TQ
Sun 10am-5pm.
No inside photography or filming.

Charing Cross Hospital

Riverside Wing (Ansell and Bailey 2006) with sculpture by David Mach, newly restored hospital chapel (Ralph Rubbs) with stained glass by John Piper and the West London Mental Health Centre (Frederick Gibberd Partnership) with sculpture and prints by Bill Woodrow. Other works by Peter Blake and Marc Quinn.

Fulham Palace Road W6 8RF
Sun 10.30am-11.30am.

Emery Walker’s House

The home of Emery Walker, printer, antiquary and mentor to William Morris. A unique Arts and Crafts domestic interior.

7 Hammersmith Terrace W6 9TS
Sat 11am-4pm/Sun 11am-4pm.

GlaxoSmithKline Clinical Imaging Centre

New clinical imaging centre, the result of a unique collaboration between GlaxoSmithKline, Imperial College London and the Medical Research Centre. Artwork inside includes series of photographs by Turner Prize nominated artists Zarina Bhimji and Catherine Yass.

Burlington Danes, Du Cane Road W12 0HS
Sat 10.30am-11.30am.

Hammersmith and Queen Charlotte’s Hospitals

Tour includes West London Renal Building (Ansell & Bailey 2005) with stained glass by Martin Donlin, radiotherapy department with prints by Julian Opie and Annie Albers and other works byAllan Ramsay, John Hoyland and Kate Whiteford.

Du Cane Road W12 0HS
Sat 12.30pm-1.30pm.

Lyric Theatre Hammersmith

Beautiful gilt and velvet auditorium rebuilt inside concrete exterior of 1970s development. New striking glass and steel entrance extension illuminated at night to create glowing box.

King Street W6 0QL
Sat 10am-1pm.



Grade I listed Modernist apartment blocks retaining many original features such as concertina windows and metal doors.

Highpoint, North Hill N6 4BA
Sat 10am-5pm.


Grim’s Dyke

One of Shaw’s best known ‘Olde English’ style country residences and once the home of WS Gilbert. Listed gardens.

Old Redding, Harrow Weald HA3 6SH
Sun 12noon-3pm.

Sweetmans Hall

16C timber-framed house with a smoke bay. Georgian and Victorian additions including interesting features. The timber frame is intact on upper storey and roof. Winner of Harrow Architectural Trust Award 2008 for restoration works undertaken by the owners. Sustainable features include use of lime mortars and other eco-friendly products in renovation programme.

90 West End Lane, Pinner HA5 3NT
Sun 10am-1pm.


The Queen’s Theatre

Opened by Sir Peter Hall, a robust example of 1970s civic architecture and a vibrant and successful producing theatre.

Billet Lane, Hornchurch RM11 1QT
Sat 10am-1pm.
Backstage tours 10am, 11am, 12noon (may not be suitable for wheelchair users).

The Round House

Grade II* listed late Georgian elliptical 3-storeyed stuccoed villa.

Broxhill Road, Havering-atte-Bower, Romford RM4 1QH
Sun 10.30am-3.30pm.


97 Park Avenue

Bauhaus/Modern Movement semi-detached family house with white concrete walls, flat roof, expanses of glass and balconies in stark contrast to the traditional architecture of the area. Very sensitively restored. Grade II* listed.

97 Park Avenue, Ruislip HA4 7UL
Sat 1pm-5pm/Sun 1pm-5pm.

Ickenham Manor

Four-bay timber-framed Tudor Manor House, connected to a Medieval hall. Later additions include 16C stair tower and two 18C brick wings.

Ickenham, Uxbridge UB10 8QT
Sat 10am-1pm.


St Mary’s Convent

Convent in 18C Grade II listed house with original features. Various additions including west wing (1913-15) and harmonious care home facilities and chapel by PRP Architects (1998-2001).

10 The Butts, Brentford TW8 8BQ
Sat 10am-3.30pm.


83 Calabria Road

A contemporary double-height extension containing library and dining room, blurs the boundary between garden and interior of a previously dark Victorian town house. A fluid sequence of spaces fills the house with light and maximises the presence of a small garden.

83 Calabria Road N5 1HX
Sun 10am-4pm..

Oak Room, New River Head

Formerly the boardroom of the 17C water house the Oak Room is a fine late Renaissance room demonstrating the New River Company’s wealth. Fine 1697 carved oak interior, attributed to Grinling Gibbons, the overmantel and panels over the doors and shelving portray water-plants and animals, fish and anglersÕ tackle.

Rosebery Avenue EC1R 4TT
Sat 10am-4pm/Sun 10am-4pm.

The Jewel Box

Conceived as a series of jewelled boxes carefully inserted into the existing fabric, the design opens up and revitalises what was a series of dark disjointed spaces. Sustainable features include Scottish Larch, green roofs, super insulation and rainwater storage.

5a Gerrard Road N1 8AY
Sun 10am-5pm.

Kensington and Chelsea

100 Princedale Road

The UK’s first certified PassivHaus refurbishment, by Octavia Housing, of Victorian social home as part of Retrofit for the Future programme. Innovative ideas alongside tried and tested principles, achieve an 80% CO2 reduction and 94% less energy use.

100 Princedale Road W11 4NP
Sun 10am-5pm.

Kensington Palace

Originally a Jacobean house, Kensington was adapted for Stuart and Georgian monarchs between 1689-1715 by the likes of Wren and Hawksmoor. Other alterations were made for future princesses residing at the palace. The palace is changing, work has started on a capital build project to transform the visitor experience for a grand re-opening in 2012.

Kensington Gardens, W8 4PX
Sat 11am-4pm.

The LuxPod

Described as a luxury room on the rocket hotel to Mars, The LuxPod is an ingenious, fully functional, new build studio flat of 9 square metres. It is urban living of the future perched atop a 19C building.

Mezzanine, 38 Gloucester Road SW7 4QT
Sat 10am-5pm/Sun 10am-5pm.

Transformation of Exhibition Road

Streetscape work to transform Exhibition Road launched in 2010 in time for the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics. With London visitor numbers set to soar in 2012, millions will visit the area. The project will reduce traffic congestion and provide visitors and residents with more pedestrian space and better access to enjoy the museums. This walk will also look at the Victorian architectural heritage and recent extensions to the museums including the Darwin Centre.

Meet: Sat 10am outside main entrance to the V&A, Cromwell Road SW7 2RL
Sat 10am-2pm.

Trellick Tower

Goldfinger’s 31-storey “Unite d’Habitation” built as social housing and now one of London’s most desirable addresses. Monumental in style, with its free-standing service tower and surreal boiler house, it retains beautiful detailing and a rich use of materials.

5 Golborne Road W10 5UT
Sun 10.30am-5pm.

Upside Down House

A contemporary reinterpretation of a traditional two storey terrace house retaining the original facade. Bedrooms at ground floor enable three interconnecting living spaces above to enjoy space and light.

20 Portobello Road W11 3DH
Sat 2pm-5pm.


Beefeater Distillery [I’ve been here]

The distillery is home to the only globally recognised gin still made in the capital. Merging the old with the new, its architecture combines Victorian style seamlessly with the handiwork of Douglas and J D Wood who extended the building in the 1960s.

20 Montford Place SE11 5DE
Sat 11.30am-3pm/Sun 12.30pm-4pm.
A Gin and Tonic or soft drink for visitors at the end of the tour.


Multi-storey, glass-enclosed cylinder, illuminated by coloured lighting at night, with most sophisticated motion-picture projection system in the world.

Waterloo Roundabout SE1 8XR
Sat 11am-4pm/Sun 11am-4pm.

Boat Tour – London’s Engineering Heritage

Great engineering of the capital with live commentary from London’s leading engineers on aspects including Bazalgette’s legacy, flood risk, current and future engineering landmarks The Shard, Thames Tunnel, Blackfriars and the Thames Barrier.

Meet: Sat 12noon at Waterloo Millennium Pier, Riverside Westminster Bridge Road SE1 7PB
Sat 12noon-2pm.

EDF Energy London Eye

The EDF Energy London Eye is the world’s tallest cantilevered observation wheel and has rapidly become a much loved symbol of modern Britain. RIBA Award Winner.

County Hall, Belvedere Road SE1 7PB
Sun 9am-10.30pm.
Sun 9am-9.45am: Lecture with Director David Marks including a 15 minute Q&A. 10am-10.30am: Guests to board the first experience of the day for a standard ticket on the EDF Energy London Eye.

Lambeth Palace

Archbishop of Canterbury’s London home, dating from 13C; 19C work by Blore, and crypt vestibule opened 2000.

Lambeth Palace Road SE1 7JU
Sat 10am-4pm.


Stone House

One of London’s best Palladian Villas with fine portico, saloon with painted ceiling c1830 and dining room with murals by Peter Kent (1995). Grade II* listed. Recently restored.

281 Lewisham Way SE4 1XF
Sat 12noon-5pm/Sun 12noon-5pm.

The Capitol (formerly Forest Hill Cinema)

Formerly Capitol Cinema, Grade II listed rare survival of a complete 1920’s cinema in Art Deco style, later a bingo hall and now a pub.

11-21 London Road SE23 3TW
Sat 10am-5pm/Sun 10am-5pm.
Regular architectural tours including behind-the-scenes to largely untouched first floor area.

Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance

The largest purpose-built contemporary dance centre in the world. A gently curving facade with richly coloured plastic-cladding by architects of Tate Modern leads into spaces filled with vivid colour and dynamic form created through collaboration with artist Michael Craig-Martin. 2003 Stirling Prize winner.

Creekside SE8 3DZ
Sat 3pm-5pm/Sun 12noon-5pm.


15 Edge Hill

New build rear extension to Victorian house, entailing extensive remodelling of ground floor to create a large open plan flow-through living, dining and kitchen space. Close integration with the garden is achieved by careful design of levels and paving surfaces.

15 Edge Hill SW19 4LR
Sat 10am-5pm.

Baitul Futuh Mosque

Purpose-built mosque (2003) and the largest in Europe, with 15m diameter dome and minarets 36m and 23m high, and accommodating 13,000 worshippers. The building is a blend of Islamic and modern British architecture and incorporates much of the structure of an old dairy site. Facilities include halls, library, creche, studios. Voted one of top 50 buildings in the world by Independent magazine.

Ahmadiyya Muslim Association, 181 London Road, Morden SM4 5PT
Sat 10am-5pm.


Abbey Mills Pumping Station

Thames Water’s novel, compact pumping station housed in a high-quality landmark building. The Grade II old pumping station (Sir Joseph Bazalgette, 1860s) may also be viewed from outside. RIBA Award Winner.

Abbey Lane E15 2RW
Sat 10am-2pm/Sun 10am-2pm.

Fundamental Architectural Inclusion tour

Stratford is at the heart of a remarkable urban transformation changing the shape of London. Fundamental give a fun friendly walking tour of this unique area, revealing the future and real story of change.

Meet: Sat/Sun 11am & 2pm outside Stratford Station, Station Street E15 1AZ
Sat 11am-2pm/Sun 11am-2pm.

Royal Victoria Dock tours on board the River Princess

The Royal Victoria Dock was the first dock built expressly for steam ships. This water-based tour offers a behind the scenes view of the imposing Grade II listed Spillers Millennium Mills, the construction site for the new Siemens Sustainability Pavilion, views of the newly renovated SS Robin and early work on the Meanwhile London regeneration competition sites which include a 21C pleasure gardens and floating lido.

Beside the south end of footbridge, in Royal Victoria Dock, Victoria Place E16 1UD
Sat 1pm-5pm/Sun 1pm-5pm.

West Ham Bus Garage

The bus garage project was part of the effective and sustainable relocation of Stratford and Waterden Road bus garage operations, It is the most environmentally sustainable bus garage in the UK, considerably exceeding the Mayor’s target of 20% on-site renewables generation. Sustainable features include biomass boilers, 100kw wind turbine with 50% of the roof being green.

Stephenson Street E16 4SA
Sat 10am-5pm.

The City of London Cemetery and Crematorium at Aldersbrook

A stunning Grade I listed landscape in the heart of East London, the beautiful 200 acre site was designed and landscaped in 1856 to deal with the environmental/health/space issues of London’s cramped and over-used churchyards. Rich in architecture from the Victorian era.

Aldersbrook Road, Manor Park E12 5DQ
Sat 10am-5pm/Sun 10am-1pm.
General access with Sat tours at 10am & 1pm and Sun at 10am, pre-book tours.


Pioneer Point

This landmark building aims to give lightness and reflectivity that will be a positive reminder of Ilford 24 hours a day. Constructed mainly of glass and steel it is destined to become a focus of Ilford that will be a source of civic pride.

South Tower, 5 Winston Way IG1 2RA
Sat 10am-5pm.


2 Amyand Cottages

Small Victorian mid-terrace cottage with extensive retrofitting of energy saving measures and microgeneration with detailed information on energy performance.

2 Amyand Cottages, Amyand Park Road, Twickenham TW1 3JA
Sun 10am-3pm.

Richmond Theatre

A typical Matcham design, this beautiful 840 seat theatre was exhaustively researched and then restored in 1989 to a fabulous crimson, cream and gold. All original mouldings restored and renewed.

The Green, Richmond TW9 1QJ
Sat 10am-2pm.

Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew: Jodrell Laboratory

Housing reference collections, office and laboratories, the Laboratory fits in with the local environment – horizontal cedarboard cladding will mellow to similar colour of trunks of eucalyptus trees outside. Louvred exterior and computer-controlled windows to regulate heating/cooling. RIBA Award Winner 2007.

Meet at Main Gate, Kew Green, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew TW9 3DS
Sat 10am-5pm/Sun 1pm-5pm.

Strawberry Hill House

Recently subject to a £9million refurbishment programme, this most influential early Gothic revival building has been restored to its dramatic original glory, recreating Walpole’s original intention for his own home.

268 Waldegrave Road, Twickenham TW1 4ST
Sat 12noon-5pm.

The Glasshouse

Contemporary courtyard style house with a low profile of just 7m. The house is a linear arrangement of rooms accessed from the 40m long double-height gallery surrounded by established trees and shrubs which also creates a boundary wall enclosing the garden.

River Lane, Petersham TW10 7AG
Sun 10am-5pm.


Dulwich College

Founded in 1619 and rebuilt in the 1860s, the buildings are large, symmetrical and ornate, in the Italian Renaissance style.

Dulwich Common SE21 7LD
Sun 10am-1pm.

London Bridge Station

A chance to view the vaults underneath London Bridge station, the earliest of which date back to 1836 (part of the original London & Greenwich Railway station), before they are restored and opened to the public as part of Network Rail’s plan to transform London Bridge station.

London Bridge SE1 9SP
Sat 12noon-4pm/Sun 12noon-4pm.

Romero House

The building challenges the idea of an office on many different levels and provides the charity with a humble, highly sustainable headquarters that reflects their ‘Just One World’ ethos. Sustainable features include ground source heat pumps, solar thermal for hot water, etc. Excellent BREEAM rating.

55 Westminster Bridge Road SE1 7JB
Sat 10am-5pm.

The Edward Alleyn Building, Alleyn’s School

A magnificent performing arts and exhibition area that includes The Michael Croft Theatre, named after the founder of the National Youth Theatre who taught at Alleyn’s School in the 1950s. Included in the building is a new sixth form study centre, a university and careers centre, religious studies department, pastoral meeting rooms, a lecture theatre and a cafe. RIBA London Award Winner 2010.

Townley Road SE22 8SU
Sun 10am-12.30pm.

Tower Hamlets

Arnold Circus: Community Park Built on Slum Rubble

Arnold Circus sits at the heart of one of the earliest social housing schemes, the Boundary Estate. Built on the rubble of an infamous slum, Arnold Circus was restored last year and provides a tranquil place in the heart of the city.

The bandstand, Arnold Circus end of Calvert Avenue E2 7JP
Sun 12noon-1pm.

Balfron Tower

Trellick Tower’s older, shorter, and lesser known sister. Grade II listed 27-storey block designed in the brutalist style for the London County Council.

Balfron Tower, St Leonard’s Road E14 0QR
Sat 1pm-5pm/Sun 1pm-5pm.

Canary Wharf Crossrail Station Construction Site [I’ve been here]

A unique opportunity to view the Canary Wharf Crossrail construction site. When complete the station, built in a reclaimed dock will be six-storey’s high, and will be large enough to accomodate One Canada Square laid on its side. Spoil has been removed by barge and taken to create a nature reserve in Thames Estuary.

Sat 10am-1pm.
Engineer-led tours of perimeter of site, every half hour.

Phoenix Heights

199 mixed tenure homes with integral community areas, varying in height from 3 to 23 storeys. Family sized units are located at the base having direct access to rear gardens, a playground and communal courtyard areas. Smaller sized units are located higher up in the tower with views across London from roof terraces and balconies. Many features to assist in the development of a local eco-system.

Meet: Community Centre, Phoenix Heights, Mastmaker Road E14 9AJ
Sat 1pm-5pm.

Tower Bridge Exhibition

Two massive piers were sunk into the river bed to support the construction, with over 11,000 tonnes of steel providing the framework for the towers and the walkways, and clad in Cornish granite and Portland stone. Magnificent views from the high-level walkways, and original steam engines in situ.

Tower Bridge Road SE1 2UP
Sat 10am-4pm/Sun 10am-4pm.

Town Hall Hotel & Apartments

Beautiful redevelopment of former Grade II listed town hall incorporating sensitive contemporary design complementing the original Edwardian/Art Deco features. A modern extension is covered in a metal laser-cut ‘skin’, in a pattern inspired by the Art Deco metal ornamentation still evident in the remaining council chamber. RIBA Award Winner 2011.

Patriot Square E2 9NF
Sat 10am-4.30pm/Sun 10am-4.30pm.


Battersea Power Station and Battersea Park

Battersea Power Station is one of London’s most iconic buildings, with its four fluted concrete chimneys, designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott. Battersea Park, designed by Sir James Pennethrone was opened in 1858. It was later transformed as part of the Festival of Britain celebrations in 1951. Tour led by The Twentieth Century Society.

Meet: Sat 1pm at Battersea Park (Albert Gate), Albert Bridge Road, SW11 4PJ
Sat 1pm-2.30pm.

Clapham House

Sensual, sculptural transformation of Victorian family home, interweaving house and garden. Of particular note is an iconic, lavishly-carved and digitally-fabricated staircase. The house is inspired by the beauty of its central garden.

23 Mallinson Road SW11 1BW
Sat 2.30pm-5.30pm.

Opera Extension

The brief: ‘an extension, full width and high, reminiscent of Sydney Opera House’ was fully met, using a structural glass facade and a three-dimensional curved vaulted ceiling. Sustainable features include special structural double-glazing system, incorporating eco-friendly glass, extra insulation.

61 Sudbrooke Road, Wandsworth Common SW12 8TQ
Sat 11am-1pm.

The Hanging Bathroom of Balham

Existing minute bathroom and garden, transformed designing a first floor luxury projected bathroom and level decked garden, creating another room, all in an eco-friendly concept.

13 Blandfield Road SW12 8BQ
Sun 11am-1pm.


1508 London

Gallery space and studio contained within RIBA London Award Shortlist 2011 building by Squire and Partners. Howick Place was formerly a vast Post Office sorting office; 1508 London designed their space to reflect their luxury design expertise in what was the Queen’s personal sorting office.

7 Howick Place SW1P 1BB
Sat 10am-5pm/Sun 10am-1pm.

23 Brook Street – Jimi Hendrix Flat

Rare opportunity to see the flat where Jimi Hendrix lived between 1968 and 1969. Sympathetic renovation and original features.

23 Brook Street W1K 4HB
Sat 10.30am-5pm/Sun 1pm-5pm.

55 Broadway (London Underground Head Office) [I’ve been here]

Headquarters of London Underground described on its 1929 opening as ‘the cathedral of modernity’, noted for its plain form, material and decoration. The exterior features sculptures by Eric Aumonier, Henry Moore, Jacob Epstein, Eric Gill and others.

55 Broadway SW1H 0BD
Sat 10am-5pm/Sun 10am-5pm.

Benjamin Franklin House

A Grade I listed Georgian house, the only surviving home of Benjamin Franklin, retaining most of the original features including central staircase, lathing, 18C panelling, stoves, windows, fittings and beams.

36 Craven Street WC2N 5NF
Sat 10.30am-4pm/Sun 10.30am-4pm.

CityWest Homes Retrofit for the Future Home

This house features many carbon emission-reducing measures, thanks to £150,000 award from the Technology Strategy Board, including learning heating controller, innovative insulation schemes, LED lighting and a boiler that generates electricity.

88 Lothrop Street W10 4JD
Sat 10am-5pm.

Dover House, Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland

Elegant Whitehall facade and domed entrance commissioned by the Duke of York. Interesting original interiors.

66 Whitehall SW1A 2AU
Sat 10am-4pm.

Former Conservative Club [I’ve been here]

Grand and monumental building with rich carvings and spectacular decorated saloon at its heart. Conserved and refurbished to replace 2 wings and provide new glazing to atrium at junction of new and old sites. Grade II* listed.

78 St James’s Street SW1A 1JB
Sat 10am-3pm.

Gap House

New family home with a minimal carbon footprint on a very narrow site (8ft wide), once the side alley and garden of adjacent house. Each room has good natural light whilst fitting in between two listed buildings in conservation area. Cost effective design methods achieved an environmentally friendly house, utilising amongst many eco-friendly devices ground source heat pump heating and rainwater harvesting. RIBA Manser Medal Winner 2009.

28D Monmouth Road W2 4UT
Sun 10am-12noon.

Home House

Built in 1776 by Wyatt with very fine interiors by Adam. Was the London base of the Countess of Home and is probably the greatest surviving Georgian town house.

19, 20 & 21 Portman Square W1H 6LW
Sun 3pm-6pm.

Lancaster House

Extravagant private palace originally built for the Duke of York, with magnificent central hall and staircase.

Stable Yard, St James’s SW1.
Sat 10am-5pm/Sun 10am-5pm.

Park Lane Hotel

London’s finest monument to Art Deco features original marble bathrooms, fireplaces and recently restored Grade I listed Ballroom.

Piccadilly W1J 7BX
Sat 10am-4.30pm/Sun 10am-4.30pm.

Queens Park Low Carbon Zone

A tour through the Queens Park Low Carbon Zone to see how WCC plans to reduce emissions in the area by more than 20% and visiting several different properties including a Victorian cottage in a conservation area refurbished to reduce carbon emissions by 60-80% and Code for Sustainable Homes Level 4+ properties under construction. Sustainable features include solid wall insulation, cavity wall insulation, MVHR, community heating PV etc.

Queens Park underground station NW6 6NL
Sat 10am-5pm.

Reform Club

Built as a Whig gentleman’s club and inspired by Italian Renaissance palaces. Lobby leads to an enclosed colonnaded courtyard with ‘complementary’ glazed roof and tessellated floor. Tunnelled staircase leads to upper floor.

104 Pall Mall SW1Y 5EW
Sat 10am-5pm/Sun 10am-3pm.
NB. Regret no children under 12 admitted.

Romanian Cultural Institute

Situated in one of the grandest and largest 19th century squares in London, 1 Belgrave Square was acquired by Romania in 1936 and is now home to the Romanian Cultural Institute.

1 Belgrave Square SW1X 8PH
Sat 1pm-5pm/Sun 1pm-5pm.

Royal Academy of Music

The Royal Academy of Music’s estate is made up of a mixture of historical Grade I and II listed buildings by John Nash and Ernest George alongside innovative architectural developments. The site has been extended over the past four decades; in the heart of the main building is a no-maintenance bronze roof which will last for hundreds of years and the most recent addition is the Void Practice Room.

Marylebone Road NW1 5HT
Sun 10.30am-12.30pm.

Royal Albert Hall

One of Britain’s most iconic buildings, the Royal Albert Hall was designed by Royal Engineers. Grade I listed, it hosts over 360 events per year covering the broadest spectrum of music styles and sporting events.

Kensington Gore SW7 2AP
Sun 10am-3.30pm.

Royal Astronomical Society

Part of the extension to Burlington House to provide accommodation for learned societies, the home of the Royal Astronomical Society since 1874 with recent refurbishment.

Burlington House, Piccadilly W1J 0BQ
Sun 10am-5pm.

Royal Automobile Club

Inspired by the French Beaux-Arts, the Royal Automobile’s pioneering clubhouse was described as being ‘on a scale of grandeur absolutely unparalleled anywhere’, with thrilling interior spaces in a mix of styles: ‘tous les Louis’. It offered outstanding facilities, including ‘the most beautiful swimming bath in England’.

89 Pall Mall SW1Y 5HS
Sat 10am-12noon.

St Martin-in-the-Fields

One of Britain’s finest churches, built in the Italian Baroque tradition and which has undergone a recent £36m renewal programme. RIBA Award Winner 2009. Civic Trust Award Winner 2010.

Trafalgar Square WC2N 4JJ
Sat 10am-4pm.
Tours of the church and crypt and bellringing demonstrations 10am-2pm, otherwise general access with free audio tours.

St Mary’s Hospital, Paddington

Tour of the hospital to include the original entrance foyer and chapel by Hopper & Wyatt (1843-51) with fine Victorian stained glass, the Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother Wing and Sporborg Link Bridge (1980-7) by Llewelyn-Davies Weeks which includes murals by Bridget Riley and the new Surgical Innovation Centre by Praxis Associates (2011) with works by Tracey Emin, Rachel Whitehead and Gary Hume.

Praed Street W2 1NY
Sun 2pm-3pm.

The British Academy

Grade I listed Nash-designed terraced houses described as one of London’s finest Georgian treasures. Interiors in No.10 by Bonomi later altered by Billery and Blow in 1905-07; No.11 interiors by Pennethorne, Nash’s pupil. The British Academy, the UK’s national body for the promotion of the humanities and social sciences moved to the building in 1998. 2010 refurbishment includes state of the art auditorium.

10-11 Carlton House Terrace SW1Y 5AH
Sat 10am-5pm.

The Buildings and People of Victoria’s past and present

Victoria provides an area rich in architectural history including the train station, Grosvenor Canal, Caxton Hall, Westminster Cathedral, the old Blewcoat school and the former Army and Navy stores. Associations with Victoria discussed on the walk include the beer trade, suffragettes, the slave trade, military shopping and a famous fictional prisoner.

Meet: Sun 11am, 2pm, meeting point given with booking.
Sun 11am-3.30pm.

The Dorchester

One of London’s most iconic hotels, celebrating its 80th anniversary this year. Prince Philip hosted his bachelor’s party on the eve of his wedding to Queen Elizabeth II in the hotel’s Park Suite, while General Eisenhower planned the Normandy Invasion from his suite. Interiors by the best of the century’s designers from Oliver Ford to Oliver Messel and most recently Fox Linton Associates and Alexandra Champalimaud.

Park Lane W1K 1QA
Sun 10am-5pm.

The London Library [I’ve been here]

The world’s largest independent lending library housing 1 million books in atmospheric Victorian cast-iron bookstacks. Elegant reading room that has been home to generations of literary London. A labyrinth of disparate buildings have been recently remodelled and restored and new features include an award-winning lightwell over a newly created reading room and contemporary but sensitive finishes.

14 St James’s Square SW1Y 4LG
Sat 10am-4pm.

The Naval Club [I’ve been here]

Grade II listed Georgian town house c1748-1750 reputed to have been 18C residence of William Pitt the Younger. First floor suite decorated in ornate white and gold ‘Louis XVI’ style. Dark stock brick building with Ionic porch and moulded architraves to sash windows.

38 Hill Street W1J 5NS
Sat 11am-5pm/Sun 1pm-5pm.

The Travellers Club

The Travellers Club was Barry’s first Pall Mall Club breaking away from the Neo-Classical style. The Pall Mall front was derived from the Palazzo Pandolfino in Florence.

106 Pall Mall SW1Y 5EP
Sat 10am-4.30pm.

The UK Supreme Court [I’ve been here]

Sensitive refurbishment of this neo-gothic Grade II* listed building enhances the historic fabric whilst reversing more recent adaptations that had left it feeling gloomy. The north and south light wells were cleared bringing light back into the building, improved orientation, and greatly enhanced the appearance of original features such as stained glass windows, wood panelling and ornate ceilings.

Parliament Square SW1P 3BD
Sat 10am-3.30pm/Sun 10am-3.30pm.

Two Temple Place

Two Temple Place was finished in 1895 for the first Viscount Astor, William Waldorf Astor, to the elaborate architectural specifications of John Loughborough Pearson and sits on reclaimed land overlooking the River Thames. The house embodies much of the outstanding workmanship and architecture of the late Victorian period.

2 Temple Place WC2R 3BD
Sun 11am-4.30pm.

Vibrant Victoria

An exploration of the history and development of this fascinating area from swampy fields to 21C regeneration. Includes suffragettes, a prison site, canal, brewery and a variety of architectural styles.

Meet: Sat/Sun 10.30am, 1.30pm, meeting point given with booking.
Sat 10.30am-2.30pm/Sun 10.30am-2.30pm.

Victoria and Victoria Palace Theatre

Victoria is an area rich in architectural history and one of its highlights is the Victoria Palace Theatre. This walk gives an unique opportunity to have an intimate tour by theatre staff of this Grade II* listed theatre celebrating its centenary this year. The theatre is a beautiful example of Frank Matcham’s eclectic style – mixing a strongly baroque theme with nods to almost every historical period along the way.

Meet: Sat 10am, 11am, meeting point given with booking.
Sat 10am-1pm.

Western Pumping Station

This station provides pumping power to lift the sewage and a part of the rainfall contributed by the district, a height of eighteen feet in the Low Level Sewer, which extends from Pimlico to the Abbey Mills Pumping Station, near Barking.

124 Grosvenor Road SW1V 4BE
Sat 10am-2pm/Sun 10am-2pm.


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  1. Mark says:

    Fantastic, thank you so much for this! Last year the pre-booking system was madness; hope it’s smoother this year.

  2. Ghazale says:

    Thanks for the info. This will be my first year to try to book. Fingers crossed!

  3. thank you very much for all the information you shared, I’m constantly

  4. lisa says:

    Thanks for doing all this – still overwhelming but possibly manageable… ;>

  5. Janey says:

    Wonderful of you to do this. Thank you for posting. It minimises the stress!

  6. Joe says:

    Bless you for doing this. Must’ve taken aaaaaages!

    Thank you.

  7. Kevin O'Neill says:

    Thanks Ian, You’re a star. Any minute now it should start!

  8. Mark says:

    Miscalculated time difference as I am currently abroad, though up at 2 am. The river engineering tours I wanted all gone already. GRRRRR.

  9. Rob says:

    Thanks Ian. Managed to get my tours book this year. Stressful but worth it come September.

  10. Andrew says:

    Although the website and booklet says that bookings for Television Centre open on 10 August, the 0370 BBC phone line started accepting them yesterday. I just called and made one myself this morning. I missed 10am yesterday, and pretty much all of the online pre-bookings now appear to be fully booked. At least there is the ballot for the BT Tower.

  11. gillian lawrence says:

    thank you

2 Pings/Trackbacks for "Pre-Booking Details Released for London Open House Weekend"
  1. […] BT Tower will also open for tours, but this is by email ballot rather than Monday morning scramble.Ian Visits has done an excellent job of rounding up the full list, while Diamond Geezer gives you a Top 10.An […]

  2. […] list of pre-booking venues is on an earlier blog post of mine so you can scan down them and I would suggest just keep trying the booking page to see if a slot […]

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