Institution of Civil Engineers

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The Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) is a registered charity that strives to promote and progress civil engineering. We believe that civil engineers are "at the heart of society, delivering sustainable development through knowledge, skills and professional expertise."

With this in mind, we are a qualifying body, a centre for the exchange of specialist knowledge, and a provider of resources to encourage innovation and excellence in the profession.

The ICE was founded in 1818 and granted a royal charter in 1828. It is the worlds oldest professional engineering body. Today the ICE represents nearly 80,000 members worldwide. Its Library is the oldest specialist technical collection in Britain.

The ICE has Designated Collections of national importance.

Venue Type:

Archive, Association or society

Opening hours

9.15-17.30 Mon-Fri

Closed: Sat/Sun

Admission charges

Members: free admission
Members of other engineering bodies: free admission
Non members with appointment: free admission
Other adults £10.00 per day

Additional info

Non members intending to visit should make an appointment, and for security reasons provide proof of identity on arrival.

The library, archive, and works of art are Designated Collections of national importance.

The Institution of Civil Engineers’ library is recognised as the first civil engineering library in the UK. It offers unrivalled subject coverage of structures, soil and rock mechanics, engineering materials, irrigation, drainage, water and wastewater systems, transport engineering in all forms, urban and rural planning, as well as management, power and energy, health and safety and contract administration and law.

The Library contains over 200,000 volumes of books and pamphlets on all aspects of civil engineering and related technology and sciences and is one of the largest specialist resources on civil engineering in the world. More than 1,500 titles are added each year.

Its Archives collection includes papers and drawings from many of the leading figures in the development of transport and engineering infrastrucure in Britain. Its works of art include the largest collection of engineering portraits in the world.

Collection details

World Cultures, Trade and Commerce, Science and Technology, Photography, Maritime, Land Transport, Inland Waterways, Industry, Fine Art, Design, Coins and Medals, Aviation, Archives, Architecture

Key artists and exhibits

  • Thomas Telford
  • George and Robert Stephenson
  • Brunel
  • Thomas Brassey
  • William Mackenzie
  • Rennie
  • Bazalgette
  • Brindley
  • Smeaton
  • John Lucas
  • Stanhope Forbes
  • Millais
  • Wyon
  • Samuely
  • Charles Hartley
  • Francis Walley
  • Mowlem
  • Mott MacDonald
  • Maunsell
  • Owen Williams
  • Rendel Palmer and Tritton
  • Coode
  • Binnie
  • Designated Collection

Institution of Civil Engineers
1 Great George Street
Greater London


Library home page

Library catalogue


Library enquiries

Archives enquiries

Library donations

Library exhibitions


Library enquiry desk

020 7665 2251

Archives Research Room

020 7665 2043


ICE Library

020 7976 7610

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.