The Literary Institute 51 High Street Egham

Welcome to the Literary Institute


A vibrant community hub that brings people together through cultural experiences that support our societal wellbeing

Once known as the Assembly Rooms, the Grade II listed building was built around 1788 as part of the Red Lion public house to provide facilities to accommodate entertainment such as dancing, performances, and card games.

It was well used throughout the 19th Century due to increased visitors to the town frequenting the popular Egham races at Runnymede.  The change in name came in the 1850s when the building became home to Egham’s Literary and Debating Society.  In World War One it was an Army Recruiting station, an Air Raid shelter in World War Two, hosting many fundraising events for the war effort.  The building has been home to the town library, the Egham Urban District Council and The Egham Museum which is still located on the first floor. 

The ground floor is now home to ‘@ the Lit’, a charity that was established to maintain the building as an accessible community space that enables others to deliver activities that benefit those living and working in Egham and the surrounding areas. Since opening in May 2021, we’ve hosted a number of craft fairs, games clubs, a comedy night, parties, exhibitions, conferences, meetings, dance classes, filming, and music performances, and are also the regular home to a number of local ‘resident‘ organisations and groups.