Previously, the Society's apartments were located in Somerset House. In December 1874, the Society was offered a suite of purpose-built apartments in Burlington House, Piccadilly, designed by architects Banks and Barry, which would give it significantly more room than was available in Somerset House.
Today, the Society shares the Burlington House Courtyard with the Royal Academy and four other leading Learned Societies, namely the Linnean Society, the Royal Society of Chemistry, the Geological Society of London and the Royal Astronomical Society.
View our online Burlington House timeline! It marks important dates in the architectural development of Burlington House, as well as important dates for the six societies surrounding the Burlington House Courtyard.
Apartments of the Society of Antiquaries of London
In its Burlington House apartments, the Society holds a research Library and Museum collections. It also holds is Ordinary Meetings of Fellows and Fellows' lecture programme on Thursday evenings (October through May), a Public Lecture Series and guided tours, a programme of conferences and research seminars, and small, temporary exhibitions. Additionally, all the business of Council and Committees, and the majority of the Society's staff, operates from Burlington House. Finally, the Society regularly hires its rooms to other charitable organisations in need of meeting and event space (in addition to hiring rooms for corporate and private function).
The ground floor rooms are suitable for wheelchair access. Access to parts of the museum and library collections is limited, but staff assistance is available. There are toilets on the ground floor.
Due to its central location at Burlington House, the Society of Antiquaries is close to a number of cafes and restaurants in Piccadilly, not to mention the refreshments at the Royal Academy. No parking is available on site.
About Conservation at Burlington House
The apartments of the learned societies around the Burlington House courtyard are included in the Government’s Statutory List of Buildings of Special Architectural or Historic Interest at Grade II*, putting them in the most important 8 per cent or so of all the listed buildings in England. Although our apartments are the least altered of all the learned society premises located at Burlington House—with the Entrance Hall, Meeting Room and Library remaining largely in their original form—they are subject to an ongoing process of incremental change, not just through major refurbishment projects like that undertaken in 2007/8, but through, for example, the updating of services, such as the recent boiler and central heating renewal programme. Council has therefore commissioned, in line with good conservation practice, a conservation management plan (CMP) to guide future change. Download a PDF of the CMP here.