The Princess launched the Shaping the World Appeal at ICE on 30 October 2013 and her patronage is due to finish in October 2018. To date, the appeal has raised over £1.5m of funding from both companies and individuals.
The appeal fund has enabled ICE to transform the former Upper Library into a state-of-the-art members’ resource centre and the Grade II-listed Lower Library into an interactive public exhibition gallery, the Infrastructure Learning Hub.
Accompanied by Nick Baveystock, ICE director general, Colonel Jane Davis, Vice Lord-Lieutenant of Greater London, and Professor Lord Robert Mair, ICE president, Her Royal Highness visited the Members' Resource Hub and toured the Invisible Superheroes exhibition currently held in the Infrastructure Learning Hub.
The Princess met with key members of staff from the library, exhibitions, education and ICE London teams. She was also introduced to members of the construction team who were involved in the design and refurbishment of the building.
Professor Lord Mair, ICE president, said: “We were delighted to welcome HRH The Princess Royal to One Great George Street to show her what Shaping the World has achieved and to thank her for her patronage. With her support, we have been able to build a platform for the education and inspiration of the next generation and to demonstrate how civil engineering directly transforms people’s lives.”
The creation of the Infrastructure Learning Hub was supported by 11 founding partners: AECOM, Atkins, Carillion, Costain, John Laing, Kier, Mace Foundation, Mott MacDonald, VINCI Construction UK Ltd, WSP, and Ramboll.
Since opening in autumn 2016, the Infrastructure Learning Hub has hosted a series of free public exhibitions, showcasing the positive impact that civil engineering has on society: Bridge Engineering, Tunnel Engineering and the current Invisible Superheroes.
Open throughout 2018, Invisible Superheroes uses state-of-the-art technology to bring to life some of the world’s most amazing engineering projects and focuses on the unsung heroes who made them possible. Real-life engineers, both past and present, feature as their cartoon superhero alter egos, keeping the world running and society safe.
Other programmes made possible by the Shaping the World Appeal have included an annual lecture series on the theme of resilience and the recruitment of an academic-in-residence to shape ICE’s work in international development, particularly focusing on the impact engineering has on communities across the globe.
This work has provided a foundation for the forthcoming Global Engineering Congress in October 2018, which will bring together the global engineering community to take practical action towards delivery of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.