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© Mr David March

IoE Number: 477672
Location: CONGRESS HOUSE INCLUDING FORECOURT AND COURTYARD SCULPTURES, 23-28 GREAT RUSSELL STREET (south side)
  CAMDEN TOWN, CAMDEN, GREATER LONDON
Photographer: Mr David March
Date Photographed: 18 August 2004
Date listed: 29 March 1988
Date of last amendment: 29 March 1988
Grade II*

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CAMDENTQ2981SEGREAT RUSSELL STREET798-1/104/684(South side)

CAMDEN TQ2981SE GREAT RUSSELL STREET 798-1/104/684 (South side) 29/03/88 Nos.23-28 (Consecutive) Congress House including forecourt and courtyard sculptures GV II* Trades Union headquarters building and sculptures. 1953-7. By David du R Aberdeen. Sculptures by Jacob Epstein and Bernard Meadows. For the Trades Union Congress. Polished granite and blue tile cladding; aluminium windows. EXTERIOR: 7 storeys, 28 windows in a continuous strip. E-shaped plan round an internal courtyard on restricted site bounded by 3 streets; imposed height limitation of 80 ft. Building houses the Memorial Hall, Library, Secretariat and Council Chamber. Principal elevation to Great Russell Street a rectangular block on pilotis; recessed ground floor glazed, upper floors continuous strip windows alternating with bands of granite cladding, those at top floor being large rectangular lights with a band of half lights above. Plinth in front of entrance supporting bronze sculpture by Bernard Meadows. Side elevation to Dyott Street more boldly modelled. Small balconies to the five main storeys at the north end, the glazed drum of the horse-shoe staircase to the basement in the centre, and a projection of the first floor beneath which is the Memorial Hall. INTERIOR: is of interest spatially and retains most original fixtures and fittings. Top-lighting of the hall is provided by glazed hexagonal coffers which form part of its space-frame roof. On the west wall of the courtyard a pyramidal screen of green marble acts as a backdrop for the TUC War Memorial by Jacob Epstein (1955-6). HISTORICAL NOTE: widely regarded, at the time of its completion and since, as one of the most important institutional buildings erected in London, and one of the most significant 1950s buildings in Britain. (Architectural Review: December 1957; Jacob Epstein: Sculpture & Drawings: London: -1987).

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