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About | Bishopsgate Institute

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Bishopsgate Institute


Bishopsgate Institute was "erected for the benefit of the public" in 1894, with the motto "I never stop learning". Our purpose has not changed.

We continue to be home for ideas and debate, learning and enquiry. We are a haven in the city, where culture, heritage and learning meet, and our mission is to inspire independent thought, connect past and present.

Our beautiful historic building is open to all, and we are vibrant, curious community. We provide welcoming spaces for people to learn and flourish, and offer a diverse range of activities:

  • Take part. Our exciting programme of Cultural Events ranges from music concerts and debates to talks and walks
  • Study. Bishopsgate Library contains 150,000 books, and holds nationally-important archives. Explore our collections on London history, socialism, activism, feminism, LGBTQ+ history, freethought and humanism. You browse our photography and oral history archives.
  • Learn together. Our Courses for Adults programme offers over 125 different courses, with three terms a year. Subjects range from political history to podcasting, from photography to Pilates.

Our listed building is also available to hire for meetings and events of any scale. Each of our spaces has a different character from our glamourous Great Hall (which can host dance events and conferences for up to 500 people), to our imposing Boardroom and atmospheric library. We are committed to accessibility and our main event rooms are all step-free.

We are in an easy-to-reach location in one of London's most dynamic areas, just two minutes' walk away from Liverpool Street station and Spitalfields Market. Buses stop outside our door.

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Head to the visitor information pages for a map and travel directions.

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Bishopsgate Institute and Foundation is a charitable company limited by guarantee.

Registered in England. No: 4362659

Registered Charity No: 1090923


Established in 1975, the English Collective of Prostitutes (ECP) is a self-help organisation of sex workers. They campaign for the decriminalisation of prostitution, for sex workers’ rights and safety, and for resources to enable people to get out of prostitution if they want to. We are honoured to hold their archive documenting their numerous campaigns, activities and continuing work to the present day. Read more about the ECP's Archive