Embassy of the United Kingdom, Washington, D.C.

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Embassy of the United Kingdom
in Washington, D.C.
British Embassy, Washington.png
Embassy of the United Kingdom in Washington, D.C..jpg
Coordinates 38°55′11″N 77°03′40″W / 38.91972°N 77.06111°W / 38.91972; -77.06111Coordinates: 38°55′11″N 77°03′40″W / 38.91972°N 77.06111°W / 38.91972; -77.06111
Location United States Washington, D.C.
Address 3100 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Ambassador Sir Kim Darroch
Website Office website

British Embassy, Washington is the United Kingdom's diplomatic mission to the United States. It is located at 3100 Massachusetts Avenue NW in Washington, D.C.


The embassy also operates consulates general in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York City, and San Francisco as well as UK government offices in Denver and Seattle.


The Embassy building
British Ambassador's Residence

The embassy is situated in a compound that is home to the ambassador's residence and the old and new chanceries. The residence was designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens to resemble an English country manor, with the old chancery facing the street. By the 1950s, the old chancery was deemed too cramped, and the new chancery, designed by chief architect Eric Bedford was constructed from 1955–1961, with Queen Elizabeth II laying the foundation stone on 19 October 1957.[1] Part of the old chancery was converted into staff quarters, and the rest is currently occupied by the offices of the British Council. The British government was the first nation to build an embassy in the area that would later become known as Embassy Row.

Winston Churchill, 1966 by William McVey

Outside the British ambassador's residence stands a statue of Sir Winston Churchill. One of the statue's feet is inside the marked embassy grounds; the other is within the District of Columbia. The embassy's website states that this symbolizes Churchill's Anglo-American parentage (his father was British, his mother American) and his status as an honorary citizen of the United States.[2]

The gardens of the ambassador's residence were planted by Elizabeth Sherman Lindsay. Lady Lindsay was a landscape gardener and wife of lifelong British diplomat Sir Ronald Lindsay.[3]


The embassy is one of the largest in Washington, employing 210 diplomats and approximately 250 additional staffers. The current ambassador as of 2016 is Sir Kim Darroch.


Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh with President Gerald Ford at the British Embassy in July 1976

On June 8, 1939, the Embassy, hosted by Ambassador Sir Ronald Lindsay, held a garden party for King George VI and Queen Elizabeth, the first time that reigning British monarchs had visited the United States.[4]

On February 11, 1964, a reception was held there for the Beatles, who had played their first concert in America earlier that day at the Washington Coliseum.[5]

On July 7, 2005, the United States Army Band played "God Save the Queen" outside the embassy in remembrance of the victims of the 7 July 2005 London bombings.[6] This mirrored the Band of the Coldstream Guards' unprecedented performance of "The Star-Spangled Banner" during the Changing of the Queen's Guard at Buckingham Palace on September 13, 2001 in remembrance of the victims of the September 11 attacks in the United States.[7][8]

Film depiction[edit]

The embassy was depicted in fiction in the 2006 BBC Television miniseries The State Within.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ A History of the Gardens of the Ambassador's Residence, British Embassy, Washington
  2. ^ CHURCHILL, Winston: Statue at the British Embassy in Washington, D.C. by William McVey located in James M. Goode's Massachusetts Avenue area. Dcmemorials.com. Retrieved on 2013-08-24.
  3. ^ ames, Olivia, editor. The letters of Elizabeth Sherman Lindsay, 1911–1954 New York: Privately Printed, 1960
  4. ^ http://washingtonembassygardens.wordpress.com/2014/02/09/the-royal-garden-party/ The Royal Garden Party: A History of the Gardens of the Ambassador's Residence, British Embassy, Washington. Retrieved on 2014-02-09.
  5. ^ John Lennon Interview: British Embassy, Washington D.C. 2/11/1964 – Beatles Interviews Database. Beatlesinterviews.org (1964-02-11). Retrieved on 2013-08-24.
  6. ^ CNN.com – Transcripts. Transcripts.cnn.com (2005-07-08). Retrieved on 2013-08-24.
  7. ^ Kelso, Paul (14 September 2001). "US anthem played at changing of the guard". The Guardian. Retrieved 26 November 2015. 
  8. ^ Graves, David (14 September 2001). "Palace breaks with tradition in musical tribute". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 26 November 2015. 

External links[edit]