Institute of Education - Bedford Row, London, UK

Denys Lasdun
Date Built
Bedford Way
This building, designed by Denys Lasdun, the architect of the National Theatre, is home to the University of London's Institute of Education.  It was completed in 1975 and officially opened in 1977 by Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother.

This Grade II Listed building is described at the time of its listing as the, "Institute of Education, Clore Institute of Advanced Legal Studies and accommodation for University College.  ....  (it features) In situ reinforced concrete and precast mullions with a cladding of prefabricated bronze-anodised aluminium panels and window sections. In plan the building makes a strong barrier to the traffic of Bedford Way while extending the concept of flexible teaching space already explored at the University of East Anglia, Norwich. ....

.... Six storeys above ground, with three basement storeys, in 1999 numbered 1-9. Flat, paved roof. Long spinal range, with wing to rear, and footings for a second incorporated in 1990-3 library extension. Large basement includes lecture theatre, the Logan Hall, under forecourt facing Lasdun's extension to the School of Oriental and African Studies opposite; .....

.... conference facilities, students' union and service entrance. Split-level entrance hall gives on to library, drama studio and bookshop, with flexible teaching areas above, mainly facing street, and tutorial rooms, mainly facing courtyard and in wing.

... The elevational treatment is in Lasdun's mature language of strata and towers, a grid of aluminium panels and glazing set over concrete plinth on western elevation, with massively over-scaled concrete staircase towers. On the eastern elevation to Bedford Way, the entrance floors are set back behind exposed frame, and has cut-back corners which demonstrate the smooth, sharp concrete particularly forcefully. The quality of finishes is exceptional, and the contrasting texture of materials unique in Lasdun's surviving work."