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Frequently asked questions

Have a query about venue hire? Read some of our most frequently asked questions.

If you can’t find the answer to your query below, please get in touch and we’ll be happy to help.

Location and access

How do I get to the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG)?

The venue is located on the intersection of Exhibition Road and Kensington Gore. We would highly recommend travelling by public transport - the nearest underground stations are South Kensington (Piccadilly, District and Circle lines) and Knightsbridge (Piccadilly line) which are both approximately a 10-15 minute walk. There is also a bus stop outside the Royal Albert Hall which is served by the following bus routes: 9, 23, 52 and 452.

Our address is: 1 Kensington Gore, London, SW7 2AR.

Does the venue have a car park?

The Society has a small car park with a few spaces that can be booked by venue hire clients subject to availability. If you would like to book a space then please contact venue hire with the details of your car (car make, registration, colour, owner and contact number).

Which is my event entrance?

There are two entrances to the building (Exhibition Road and Kensington Gore) so please refer to your package details for your designated event entrance.

Is the venue wheelchair accessible?

The Exhibition Road and Kensington Gore entrances are both wheelchair accessible. There are two spaces in the Ondaatje Theatre for wheelchair users, but should you require additional spaces then please do contact us in advance. A ramp can be provided for speakers to access the stage. There are a set of steps on the ground floor of the venue (connecting the Theatre to the ambulatory), but a stair lift is available for wheelchair users. The Lowther Room is located on the first floor but can be accessed by a small lift. Unfortunately, the Council Room is not wheelchair accessible.

Should you expect wheelchair users or have any further queries about accessibility then please contact venue hire in advance.

Are pets permitted?

Registered assistance dogs are very welcome, however other pets cannot be accommodated at the venue.

Venue packages

Is the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) a private venue?

The Society is a working building for Society staff, Fellows and Members. The Ondaatje Theatre, Education Centre and small meeting rooms are all private rooms.

Does the venue have small rooms for hire?

The venue has four small meeting rooms available to add on to your package which are ideal for a green room, meeting space or staff office. Take a look at our meetings packages for more details.

Am I eligible for the reduced rates?

We are proud to offer a reduced rate to charities with a registered charity number and educational institutions. We also offer Society Fellows and Members a reduced rate for private hires such as a birthday party or wedding.

Event planning

Who registers and checks in my attendees?

You will need to arrange for your team to check in and badge your attendees on arrival. A desk and seats near the entrance will be provided for your team. If you have booked one of our small meeting rooms then please share a list of attendee names in advance and our reception team can check in guests for you.

Do I need to provide a first aider?

Yes, you will be responsible for providing first aid for your event. There is a first aid room at the venue which you are welcome to use.

Do I need to hire furniture?

We can provide tables and chairs for all standard room setups and can recommend suppliers for any additional furniture. Please ensure to get in touch with venue hire to organise room setup in advance of your event.

What time will I have access to the venue to setup?

  • Full day and half day morning hire of the Theatre and Education Centre includes access to the venue at 8.00am to start setup. Meeting room hire includes access to the venue at 9.00am to start setup.

  • Half day afternoon hire includes access to the venue at 1.30pm to start setup.

  • Evening hire includes access to the venue at 5.30pm to start setup.

Please allow one hour to complete your setup before inviting guests to your event.

Can I book access prior to 8.00am to start setup earlier?

We can offer earlier access at 7.00am on full day and half day morning hire for an additional charge.

When will I need to complete derig?

  • Full day and half day afternoon hire will need to complete derig by 5.30pm.

  • Half day morning hire will need to complete derig by 1.00pm.

  • Evening hire will need to complete derig by 11.00pm.

Please finish your event half an hour earlier to allow time to derig and vacate the venue.

Can I extend my access past 11.00pm for additional derig time?

We can offer an extra hour of derig until midnight for an additional charge.

When do I need to share event details with the venue hire team?

If you are happy to go ahead, we need the following information two weeks before your event:

  • The time of arrival and departure for organisers and any catering

  • The time you expect attendees to arrive and depart

  • A schedule for the day/evening, including sessions and catering breaks

  • The final number of attendees

  • Your room setup and AV requirements

Can I deliver items to the venue?

You are welcome to organise a delivery of small items which we can store at the venue up to 24 hours in advance. If you could kindly label these with your event title and date, and collect the following day, it would be much appreciated.

Audio and visual

Is AV equipment included?

Each room includes a set of AV equipment available for your event. Take a look at your package details for a full list of AV equipment or get in touch with venue hire for further information.

In what format should I produce my presentations?

Presentations should be supplied in Microsoft PowerPoint format and we would recommend a 16:9 (widescreen) ratio. For presentations in the Ondaatje Lecture Theatre, you are welcome to supply these in a Keynote format.


How can I book catering?

Catering can be booked with our trusted partner Lodge Catering. For quotes and sample menus please contact the team and they will be happy to help with your enquiry:

Telephone: 020 8960 5794


Can food and drink be taken into the Ondaatje Lecture Theatre?

To protect the lecture theatre food and drink are not permitted.