Independence Memorial Hall

Independence Memorial Hall

Independence Commemoration Hall
Alternative names Independence Commemoration Hall
General information
Location Cinnamon Gardens, Colombo
Coordinates Coordinates: 6°54′16.5″N 79°52′02.2″E / 6.904583°N 79.867278°E / 6.904583; 79.867278
Construction started 4 February 1949[1]
Completed 1953
Owner Ministry of Cultural Affairs
Technical details
Floor area 10,000 sq. ft
Design and construction
Architect Tom Neville Wynne-Jones
Other designers Shirley D’Alwis

Independence Memorial Hall (also Independence Commemoration Hall) is a national monument in Sri Lanka built for commemoration of the independence of Sri Lanka from the British rule with the restoration of full governing responsibility[2] to a Ceylonese-elected legislature on February 4, 1948. It is located at the Independence Square (formerly Torrington Square) in the Cinnamon Gardens, Colombo. It also houses the Independence Memorial Museum.

The monument was built at the location where the formal ceremony marking the start of self-rule, with the opening of the first parliament by the HRH Prince Henry, Duke of Gloucester occurred at a special podium February 4, 1948.

Located at the head of the monument is the statue of the first prime minister of the country Rt. Hon. Don Stephen Senanayake "The Father of the Nation". Most of the annual National Independence Day celebrations have been held here. Apart from a monument it served as the ceremonial assembly hall for the Senate of Ceylon and the House of Representatives of Ceylon until the parliament was moved to the new parliament complex. Currently it is the venue for religious events and annual national day celebrations.


The formal ceremony marking the start of self-rule, with the opening of the first parliament at the special podium at the present Independence Square, Colombo.

The building was designed by a group of eight notable architects led by Tom Neville Wynne-Jones CBE,[3][4] and included F.H. Billimoria, Shirley de Alwis, Oliver Weerasinghe, Homi Billimoria, Justin Samarasekera and M. B. Morina. The design of the building is based on the Magul Maduwa (Celebration Hall), the Royal audience hall of the Kingdom of Kandy the last native kingdom of the island, where on 5 March 1815 the Kandyan Convention was signed between the British and the Kandyian Chieftains (Radalas) ending the Kingdom of Kandy.

The Memorial Hall was featured as a pitstop on both 4th season of The Amazing Race Asia, and 1st season of The Amazing Race Australia.

Events Held

See also


  1. "Independence Square". Ministry of Cultural Affairs. Retrieved 7 July 2015.
  2. Welikala, Asanga (2012). The Sri Lankan Republic at 40: Reflections on Constitutional History, Theory and Practice. Colombo: Centre for Policy Alternatives. p. 152. ISBN 978-955-1655-93-8.
  3. Pieris, Anoma (2013). Architecture and Nationalism in Sri Lanka: The Trouser Under the Cloth. New York: Routledge. p. 112. ISBN 978-0-415-63002-3.
  4. Daswatte, Channa (2006). Sri Lanka Style: Tropical Design and Architecture. Hong Kong: Periplus Editions Ltd. p. 172. ISBN 978-0-7946-0060-0.
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