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The former Commonwealth Institute located in the borough of Kensington and Chelsea, Greater London, was built as a cultural exhibition and conference centre in 1960-62. It was designed by Robert Matthew, Johnson-Marshall and Partners, and involved a major engineering contribution from A J and J D Harris. The exhibition designer was James Gardner.

The main exhibition building holds the primary interest of the site. This has a low brickwork plinth carrying concealed walls of blockwork, clad on all four sides with opaque turquoise heat-soaked toughened glass panels (this replaced the original blue-grey Hills patent glazing in 2001). The exhibition building roof is of a complex section, consisting of a central hyperbolic-paraboloid flanked by four warps of 'bastard' hyperbolic shape, constructed of shell concrete in the centre warp and of pre-cast radiating concrete ribs in the outer warps, covered by woodwool slabs. The whole was originally clad on the outside by sheet copper donated by the Northern Rhodesian (now Zambian) Government. This was replaced in 2001 with long strip copper sheets laid to follow the rooflines. In situ concrete 'legs' buttressing centre warps project at the front and back of the exhibition building.

In the early 1970s a small addition was made to the North West corner of site and in 2000-1 significant works were undertaken by Avery Associates, which included the repair of the roof and re-cladding of the exterior curtain wall. In 2000, ownership of the building and site was transferred from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office to a newly formed Trust managed on behalf of the High Commissioners to London of the Commonwealth nations.

In September 2010 it was reported that the Heritage Lottery Fund had allocated an initial grant of £300 000 to the Design Museum to convert the Commonwealth Institute building for its use.

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Further information about monuments may be obtained by contacting Archive Services, through the Historic England website.