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About us

The Institution of Mechanical Engineers was formed in Birmingham in 1847 and One Birdcage Walk was officially opened as the Institution's headquarters in May 1899.

Located just minutes from the Houses of Parliament, Horse Guards Parade and HM Treasury, we are conveniently situated just a 5 minutes walk from Westminster and St James's Park tube stations and a short walk from Victoria, Charing Cross and Waterloo mainline stations.

The building which overlooks St James's Park is regarded as one of the finest examples of traditional architecture in Westminster. One Birdcage Walk provides you with modern facilities located in a unique building in a prestigious central London location.

Venue history

    One Birdcage Walk is the purpose built home for the  Institution of Mechanical Engineers, formed in Birmingham in 1847. The building is in 'Queen Anne style' which was the height of fashion at the time, nicknamed 'streaky bacon', and designed by architect Basil Slade. It was officially opened on 16-17 May 1899 when at the time, the building was fitted out with state-of-the-art features such as telephone, electric lift and synchronome master clock which used electrical impulses to ensure that all clocks in the building kept uniform time.

    The venue's Lecture Theatre, located on the ground floor, would have looked very different from its original state - hard wooden benches, a dome in the ceiling and windows down the left hand side. Historically, the Lecture Theatre was used for the reading of a paper by Frank Whittle in 1945 on the development of the jet engine, as well as D-Day planning sessions in 1943.

    The Marble Hall was originally known as the 'tea room' and the 'drawing room' where the Institution's members would enjoy high tea following meetings in the Lecture Theatre. It was built in the style of a Venetian palace and is decorated with antique Sienna pilasters, and onyx panels with dark borders; and the flooring is Piastraccia and dark Grande squares.

  • Access Arrangements

    Due to the age and configuration of the building, every reasonable effort will be made to accommodate wheelchair users or persons with other disabilities visiting One Birdcage Walk

  • Service Policy

    One Birdcage Walk is committed to providing high quality venue space for meetings, conferences and events, and hospitality services including catering, audio visual equipment and support, and event management and planning services

  • Terms and conditions

    These conditions apply to letting by Professional Engineering Projects of services at The Institution of Mechanical Engineers, trading as One Birdcage Walk