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Latitude: 51.6177 / 51°37'3"N
Longitude: -3.9381 / 3°56'17"W
OS Eastings: 265918
OS Northings: 192768
OS Grid: SS659927
Mapcode National: GBR WST.Q7
Mapcode Global: VH4K9.PLGQ
Entry Name: Royal Institution of South Wales (Swansea Museum)
Listing Date: 23 April 1952
Last Amended: 30 March 1987
Source ID: 11653
Building Class: Recreational
Location: Occupying an exposed island site facing N across the A483 dual carriageway.
Community: Castle (Castell)
Built-Up Area: Swansea
Traditional County: Glamorgan
Erected 1839-41. Designed by Mr F Long of Liverpool, William Rayner, builder. Later additions include art gallery of 1901. Greek revival.
2 storey and basement Bath stone temple with fluted Ionic tetrastyle portico with pediment and steps up. Dentilled cornice and blocking course continues to 3-bay flanks with Doric pilasters, blind upper storey, band course and ramped, lugged architraves to ground floor. Sash windows with marginal glazing bars. Ramped architrave to central doorcase with fanlight and double doors with anthemion panels. 1 bay return elevation to right end, low top-lit gabled rear extension with arched keyblocked doorway (blocked). 3 bay return to left end with low top-lit gabled rear extension, modern extensions in angle.
Good original ironwork railings with scrolled supports sweep forward to left and right of portico; tapered panelled piers (cemented) with entablatures. Railings return on right to meet low rubble boundary wall (continues as crinkle-crankle to rear); into Adelaide Street on left to meet rubble boundary wall.
Retains entrance hall with ramped architraves and double doors to library on right and lecture hall on left. Library has mahogany bookcases on two levels with open balustered stairs and fluted columns with acanthus capitals to ground floor. Otherwise plain detailing. Fine Imperial stone staircase with original cast-iron square balusters leads up from rear of entrance hall. Interior of rear right hand hall (former Reference Library and Reading Rooms) has timber trussed roof with ironwork foliage spandrels, paired pilasters with swagged capitals to display cases, wide pilastered end doorcase and segmental arched recess. Small rear left hand hall (former Art Gallery and Museum) has timber trussed roof with metal tie-rods and circled spandrels.
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