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The Willis Building

Friars Street, Ipswich IP1 1TD, England
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Ranked #15 of 57 Attractions in Ipswich
Type: Architectural Buildings, Landmarks/ Points of Interest, Landmarks
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23 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Derby, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
401 reviews 401 reviews
258 attraction reviews
136 helpful votes 136 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 17, 2014

This building has fascinated me ever since it was built in the early 1970s. Designed by Norman Foster, and having exterior walls consisting only of darkened glass it was a brilliant concept and rightly deserves to be one of the youngest buildings to be Grade I listed. The reflections of other buildings in the walls are fantastic, no matter from... More

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Spalding, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
19 attraction reviews
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 7, 2014

This very modern building is right in the town centre and if you are walking around the town you will certainly not miss it. It dominates the junction of several roads and has been built in the shape of a grand piano. It appears to be made entirely of black glass but obviously must have some well hidden inner supports!

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Slough, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
45 reviews 45 reviews
20 attraction reviews
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 27, 2014

The reflection at sunset was wonderful, turning a corner in a normal street was a real find.We hadn't even read about it, but we did afterwards.

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London, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
55 reviews 55 reviews
42 attraction reviews
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 24, 2014

Many don't think of this forty year old building as extraordinary, as it is now very much part of the cityscape of Ipswich, just as the Ancient House and Christchurch Mansion are. But take a detailed look at the outside and you'll see that many modern buildings have copied the same rules this building pioneered. Together with Oriel Chambers, this... More

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14 reviews 14 reviews
5 attraction reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 30, 2014

It is a very interesting building with the roof being very strange with grass and hedges. Inside all yellow and green (with the odd Norwich football scarf) and quite a lot darker than you would expected. The escalators speed up when you step on them. It is much better than the Willis building in the City of London. They should... More

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Dublin, Ireland
Top Contributor
74 reviews 74 reviews
21 attraction reviews
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2014

I have never been inside, but was impressed by the structure and design of this building as I walked by it one day roaming around the town.

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Sussex, England
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
32 attraction reviews
72 helpful votes 72 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 18, 2014

An absolutely beautiful example of the best 1970s architecture, the Willis building is well worth looking for in Ipswich. Actually, quite a bit of Ipswich centre is architecturally beautiful, with some stunning churches, delightful Tudor houses and impressive Georgian buildings. The Willis building holds up well against them all.

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Ipswich, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
3 attraction reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 18, 2014

Absolutely beautiful building, even today. Its a shame the rest of Ipswich town centre didn't develop. It could have been a very beautiful side to the town - Ipswich's Canary Wharf if you like.

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Colchester, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
50 reviews 50 reviews
28 attraction reviews
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 16, 2013

Norman Foster built this modern building in the early 1970's for the multinational Insurance Company Willis. It is listed and originally had a swimming pool on the ground floor but has since been closed and used for office space, you can still see the original markings for the pool in the office. The roof has a garden with views all... More

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Cambridge, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
171 reviews 171 reviews
90 attraction reviews
196 helpful votes 196 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 11, 2013

I like photography so enjoyed getting some shots of the reflections from the dark glass of the surrounding buildings.

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