I am Mark Bertram, and I spent much of my career working for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on all building and managerial aspects of Britain’s embassies and consulates around the world. After I retired, I wrote a book, published in 2011, on the history and evolution of this collection of buildings. I intended then to write a catalogue of the buildings for publication as a sister volume, but that idea has morphed into this website.
Catalogue entries focus on individual buildings. They do not include background on Posts, biographies of people, or comparison with buildings at other Posts: this material can be found in the book, Room for Diplomacy. Some catalogue entries contain page references to the book if it contains more description than appropriate to a catalogue entry. Anecdotage does not appear in either book or catalogue without prior warning.
Illustrations range from professional official photographs from the recently re-discovered Property Services Agency archive (by courtesy of English Heritage) to snapshots taken by me in The National Archives at Kew. A single click on a small illustration will bring an enlargement up on the screen. With very few exceptions (which are acknowledged where they occur), the illustrations are either licensed under the Open Government License v2.0 or copyright in them belongs to me.
A sub-heading for Notes at the end of some Post entries records acknowledgements, copyrights, Post-specific bibliography and the like. Beyond these, I have not included source references on this site: many are in Room for Diplomacy, and I should be happy to supply upon request those that are not.
A second edition (Spire Books 2017) of
ROOM FOR DIPLOMACY: The History of Britain’s Diplomatic Buildings Overseas 1800-2000
is now available at £45 (RRP) through bookshops and (soon) on Amazon. Alternatively, orders can be placed direct with the author, via the comment box below, at £39 (including packing and postage within UK). Orders will be dispatched immediately after receipt of payment by cheque or bank transfer.