The Imperial Institute

One of Ireland’s dining places was the Imperial Institute on Exhibition Road in South Kensington. This grand edifice was built following the 1886 Colonial and Indian Exhibition, designed by T.E. Tollcutt and completed in 1893. It was originally a museum and exhibition centre, but in the 1920s one of the galleries was converted into the Imperial Institute Cinema. Film screenings were mainly of a documentary type, focused on the British Empire.

Round the corner from the RCM, Ireland used this venue as a social dining place, for example meeting his sister Ethel there in July 1932. These photographs of the interior of the Imperial Institute  give a sense of its grandeur and what was lost when it was demolished in the 1950s.

 Imperial Institute Cinema


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