An architectural cross-section by Haworth Tompkins depicting the possible design of the Warburg Institute

The £14.5m Warburg Renaissance project began on 4 July 2022 and is scheduled to last until Spring 2024. The building is being refurbished in three phases and a 2-storey new build extension is being constructed in the courtyard.

We are now in the third and final phase of the building work:

  • The ground floor and basement are closed for refurbishment.
  • Entry to the Institute is via the Slade School of Fine Art on Woburn Square.
  • The library's books are all accessible on floors 1-4, but periodicals are unfortunately off-site and inaccessible until the end of the project.
  • Special collections (the Archive, Photographic Collection and the Library's rare book collection) have been moved to Stewart House, a five-minute walk from the Institute.

What's happening this week?

What's happening: 4 - 8 March

The photograph shows the temporary protection that has been installed over the courtyard extension. This will allow for the preparation of the green roof wild flower covering that will blanket the extension.

Next week, the Library stairs will be closed for a week from Monday 11 March due to the installation of new flooring.

Both the accessible toilet in the 1st floor stacks corridor and the new ladies loos in the main 1st floor stacks should finally be fully operational this week.

Library Heating

Despite the approach of Spring, it remains chilly in the Library.

Unfortunately, the new heating system throughout the building cannot be completed and turned on until the much later in the current phase of building work.

We have plugged in as many mobile radiant heaters across all floors as we can, but unfortunately we are limited by the building's electrical circuits, which trip if overloaded.

We apologise for the cold. Please wear warm layers or keep your coat on while working.

Access to the Institute

Temporary new entrance 

During the final phase of the Warburg Renaissance project beginning in September 2023, the ground floor and basement will be closed for refurbishment.

Consequently, there is currently no access to the Institute through the existing front doors.

Access will be via the Slade School of Fine Art next door.

The pavement walkway at the front of the Warburg will be closed at all times of the day until the completion of the project in Spring 2024.

The Institute can only be accessed through the Slade via the 1st floor. Use the intercom at the Slade front door to contact Warburg Reception and be buzzed into the building.

Please come up to the 1st floor where the the Warburg reception desk, lockers and Library Enquiries are clearly signposted. 

Phase 3 opening hours

We very much regret that during Phase 3 the Institute will not be able to open on Saturdays. This is a temporary measure and we apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Institute and Library opening hours 25 September - Spring 2024 (Phase 3):

Monday - Thursday 10.00 - 20.00

Friday 10.00 - 18.00

Facilities for readers

Facilities during Phase 3

Common Room: Room 412 on the 4th floor is now a temporary Common Room open to both readers and Warburg staff and students. You are very welcome to use the room as a place to bring some lunch, have a cup of tea, or talk with friends.

Ladies' toilets: There are ladies' toilets in the 1st floor library, 2nd floor corridor, the 3rd floor library, and the 4th floor corridor.

Men's toilets: There are men's toilets in the 2nd floor library and 4th floor corridor.

Unisex accessible toilet: There are accessible toilets on the 1st and 3rd floors of the library stacks.

Water fountain: at Reception

 

Noisy works

Noisy works timetable

Noisy works during the construction period will be in accordance with the times below. At 10am and 2pm a handbell is rung in all work areas to signify the end of the unrestricted period.

08.00 - 10.00: Unrestricted noisy works

10.00 - 12.00: Noise from construction site to be less than 45dB within all areas of the building still occupied by the Warburg (i.e., typical library noise conditions)

12.00 - 14.00: Unrestricted noisy works

14.00 - 18.00: Noise from construction site to be less than 45dB within all areas of the building still occupied by the Warburg (i.e., typical library noise conditions)

There are also a number of 'Quiet Days' agreed in advance when no noisy works will take place. These will be for events, exams etc.

Project updates

Project updates

Read our project updates on the progress of the Warburg Renaissance works, which mark the milestones of this 18 month project.

Building work and collection moves schedule

Decant / April-June 2022

4 - 22 April 2022: Periodicals (P classmarks; Basement) are moved off-site and remain inaccessible for the duration of the project.

25 April - 8 May 2022: The Photographic Collection is not accessible while it is packed and moved to nearby Stewart House.

9 - 19 May 2022: Orientation (B, G, A & F classmarks; 3rd & 4th floors) is moved to the Basement and will be inaccessible while it is packed and moved within the building. From 19 May, these books will be available in the Basement mobile stacks.

16 May - 1 July 2022: The Archive is not accessible while it is packed and moved to nearby Stewart House. After 2 July, visitors will be able to consult the Archive in Stewart House by appointment.

6 June - 10 June 2022: Action (D & H classmarks; 4th floor) is moved to the 1st floor space vacated by the Photographic Collection and will be inaccessible while it is packed and moved within the building. Access will be restored on the 1st floor. 

10 - 15 June 2022: The Library's rare books and manuscripts will be unavailable while they are packed and moved to Stewart House. After 16 June, special collections will be accessible by appointment at Stewart House.

Phase 1 / July 2022-February 2023: Floors 4 & 3 closed

Floors 4 and 3 are closed for refurbishment

Visitors can consult Archive and Photographic Collection material at the University of London's Stewart House throughout the building works

Action (D & H classmarks) is accessible on the 1st floor

Orientation (B, G, A & F classmarks) is accessible in the Basement

Word (E & N classmarks) is available for use on the 2nd floor

Image is available for use on the 1st floor (C classmarks) and Basement (K & CR classmarks)

Periodicals (P classmarks) remain in off-site storage and are not accessible

The rest of the Library collections remain in place.

Decant / March 2023

Orientation (classmarks B, G, F & A) is returned to the refurbished 3rd floor and will be inaccessible for approximately one week while it is packed and moved (6 - 15 March 2023)

Word (E & N classmarks; 2nd floor) is moved to the Basement and will be inaccessible for approximately three days while it is packed and moved (9 - 17 March 2023)

Image (C classmarks; 1st floor) is moved to various locations on the 4th floor and in the Basement and will be inaccessible for approximately four days while it is packed and moved (20 - 24 March 2023). K and CR classmarks remain in place in the basement.

Action (classmarks D &H) is returned to the refurbished 4th floor and will be inaccessible for approximately three days while it is packed and moved (27 - 29 March 2023)

Periodicals (P classmarks) remain in storage off-site and are not accessible

Phase 2 / March-August 2023: Floors 2 & 1 closed

The 3rd and 4th floors reopen after refurbishment; the 1st and 2nd floors close for building works

Visitors can consult Archive and Photographic Collection material at the University of London's Stewart House throughout the building works

Action (D & H classmarks) is available for use on the refurbished 4th floor

Orientation (B, G, A & F classmarks) is available for use on the refurbished 3rd floor

Word (E & N classmarks) is available for use in the Basement

Image is split between various locations within the Institute. Classmarks K, CN, CB, CD, CFM, CM, CE, CG and CR are all available in the basement. Classmarks CF, C-H, CI, CA and CP, and all Extra Large Size and Large Size books are available on the 4th floor.

Periodicals (P classmarks) remain in storage off-site and are not accessible

Decant / August-September 2023

Image (K, C & CR classmarks) will be inaccessible between 14-22 August while it is packed and moved back to the 1st floor

Word (E & N classmarks) will be inaccessible between 23-25 August while it is packed and moved back to the 2nd floor

Reading Room reference works (RR classmarks) are likely to inaccessible on 29 August while they are moved to the 4th floor

Phase 3 / September 2023-May 2024: Ground and Lower Ground floors closed

The 1st and 2nd floors reopen after refurbishment. The Ground and Lower Ground floors close for building works.

As the ground floor is closed, access to the Institute is via the Slade School of Fine Art next door and the Library enquiries area is on the 1st floor.

Visitors can consult Archive and Photographic Collection material at the University of London's Stewart House throughout the building works

Action (D & H classmarks) is available for use on the refurbished 4th floor

Orientation (B, G, A & F classmarks) is available for use on the refurbished 3rd floor

Word (E & N classmarks) is available for use on the refurbished 2nd floor

Image (K, C & CR classmarks) is available for use on the refurbished 1st floor

Reading Room reference works (RR classmarks) are available for us on the 4th floor

Periodicals (P classmarks) remain in storage off-site and are not accessible

Final decant / May-June 2024

The project is completed

Periodicals and Special Collections (the Archive, Photographic Collection and the Library's rare books collection) are returned to the refurbished Lower Ground floor

Reading Room reference works (RR classmarks) are returned to the newly refurbished ground floor Reading Room

Special Collections

Special Collections

The Institute’s Special Collections – the Archive, Photographic Collection and the Library’s rare books and manuscripts – have been moved to the University of London’s Stewart House at 32 Russell Square, London, WC1B 5DN. Stewart House is a five minute walk from the Institute.

Material from the Archive and the Library's Special Collections are available for consultation by appointment only until the end of the building project in May 2024. 

Walk-in visitors are welcome in the Photographic Collection and there is no need to make an appointment in advance.

Photographic Collection

The Photographic Collection has now moved to its temporary new home in Stewart House (32 Russell Square, WC1B 5DN), where it will remain until the end of the building works in May 2024. There is no need to make an appointment to use the collection.

Archive

The Archive has now moved to its temporary new home in Stewart House (32 Russell Square, WC1B 5DN), where it will remain until the end of the building works in May 2024. Visitors can consult Archive material in Stewart House, a five minute walk from the Warburg Institute.

Please email warburg.archive@sas.ac.uk to organise your visit.

Library rare books and manuscripts

The Library's special collections have been moved to their temporary new home in Stewart House (32 Russell Square, WC1B 5DN). 

Please ask at the Reading Room enquiries desk or email warburg.library@sas.ac.uk if you would like to consult items designated as Warburg Rare Books/Apply to staff on the library catalogue. Special collections materials is not available on Saturdays as Stewart House is closed. We may require up to 24 hours warning in order to provide access to rare books and manuscripts either in the Institute or in the Stewart House Reading Room.

Basement

Periodicals

The Library’s periodicals (P classmarks) have been moved off-site from 4 April 2022 and will be inaccessible throughout the works. We apologise for the inconvenience this causes.

Check our the library catalogue and Periodicals List or to see which of our periodicals are available online either from the Warburg Institute or as open access journals.

All readers with a valid Warburg Library card can access JSTOR by logging in through our Online Resources and Databases page. Click on the JSTOR link and, when prompted, enter your name and the barcode number on the back of your Warburg Library card.

The Reading Room

Reading Room reference works

The ground floor Reading Room is closed during Phase 3 of the building works, from September 2023 - May 2024. During this time, Reading Room reference works are accessible on the 4th floor.

The Reading Room enquiries desks have been moved to the 1st floor for the final phase, along with the reserve shelves and copying/printing facilities. You can find the new acquisitions table on the 2nd floor and the new periodicals are at the very end of the Action on the 4th floor.

1st floor

Image: Ancient Art & Archaeology (K), Art History (C)

The 1st floor was refurbished during Phase 2 of the project (March-August 2023).

All K, C and CR books have been returned to the refurbished 1st floor and are fully available there.

2nd floor

Word: Language & Literature (E), Transmission of Classical Texts (N) 

The 2nd floor was refurbished during Phase 2 of the project (March-August 2023).

Word books have been returned to the refurbished 2nd floor and are fully available there.

3rd floor

Orientation: Western Religions (B), Eastern Religions (G), Magic & Science (F), Philosophy (A)

The 3rd floor was refurbished during Phase 1 of the Warburg Renaissance building project (July 2022-February 2023).

Orientation books have now been returned to their permanent home on the 3rd floor and are fully available for use.

4th floor

Action: Society & Culture (D), History (H)

The 4th floor was refurbished during Phase 1 of the Warburg Renaissance building project (July 2022-February 2023).

Action books have now been returned to their permanent home on the 4th floor and are fully available for use.