Prince Albert’s vision: Then and now

Aerial view of South Kensington

Event schedule details

Sunday 19 June

13.00-13.45

Event location details

Performance Hall

Royal College of Music

Explore Prince Albert’s radical vision to create a cultural quarter and super-university in South Kensington.

The Great Exhibition of 1851, in London's Hyde Park, was a resounding success: visited by some six million people and making a profit of £186,000. Prince Albert, Queen Victoria's Consort, who had been deeply involved in the Exhibition, had strong views about how these proceeds should be spent.

His vision was for them to be used to turn South Kensington into a mixture of cultural quarter and super-university, celebrating and studying science, technology, design and the arts. Today's internationally renowned museums, galleries, universities, colleges and learned societies on Exhibition Road were the indirect result.

Join Professor Sir Christopher Frayling, former Rector of the Royal College of Art, and Professor Colin Lawson, Director of the Royal College of Music, as they discuss this astonishing legacy and explore which aspects of Prince Albert's original vision have come true, and which haven't.

Visitor information

This event will have some advance tickets released ahead of the Festival weekend.

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Event categories

  • Adults
  • Talks and tours
Aerial view of South Kensington