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The Florence Nightingale Museum re-opens on 12 May 2022

On 12 May 2022, the 202nd anniversary of the birth of the mother of modern nursing, the Florence Nightingale Museum will re-open fully for the first time in over two years. In March 2020, the Museum launched a special exhibition, Nightingale in 200 Objects, People & Places, to begin a year of celebratory events for Florence’s bicentenary. Ten days later, England entered its first period of lockdown and the year’s events were curtailed.

Now, after two years in which the Museum’s future was at risk and it was forced to close, conditions have improved to the extent that the Museum will open five days a week, with new displays reflecting the enduring relevance of Florence Nightingale’s work and the achievements of the Museum over the past two years.

When the Museum re-opens, so does the Nightingale in 200 Objects, People & Places exhibition, presenting 200 items, stories and places that reveal the character of a true pioneer of nursing and hospital standards.

Among the 200 objects, people and places:

The ‘lamp’ (actually a Turkish lantern) carried by Florence Nightingale during the Crimean War.

The Scutari Sash designed by Florence – the first nursing uniform.

Florence Nightingale’s medicine chest, containing glass jars of ‘domestic’ remedies. Florence took this medicine chest to the Crimean War for her and her nurses to use if needed.

The bad-tempered – now stuffed – pet owl, Athena, who used to enjoy being carried around in Florence’s pocket.

Florence Nightingale’s highly decorated (and well used) writing case.

Her own copy of Oliver Twist by her friend and supporter Charles Dickens

The Florence Nightingale Barbie from Mattel’s Inspiring Women collection

The knocker from the front door of Florence’s London home at 10 South Street, where she lived from 1865 until her death in 1910.

Florence Nightingale’s cameo appearance in the Assassin’s Creed Syndicate video game

Among the new features of the Museum:

An updated Crimean War display, enhanced by the rare display of a model of the Russian carriage used by Florence during the war; a new map installation tracing Florence’s journey to the war; a video examining the carriage and focusing on the 38 nurses that Florence led to the British army’s Crimean War hospital base at Scutari in Turkey.

A celebration of Florence Nightingale’s legacy in the field of statistics, featuring professional statisticians, including Professor Jennifer Rogers and Sir David Spiegelhalter, marvelling at her work and legacy. This also includes the display of a very significant artefact, Florence Nightingale’s entry certificate into the Statistical Society of London – she became its first female member in 1858, two years after her return from Crimea. The document, on loan from the Royal Statistical Society for the first month of opening, states ‘he is a fit person’, reflecting attitudes towards women at the time.

A new family activity trail with Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths teasers linked to Museum objects.

While the Museum has remained largely closed, online and pop-up exhibitions have been launched, new education resources have taken Florence Nightingale across the world, the Museum has illuminated the Houses of Parliament, Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospitals with images of Florence, welcomed school groups, paraded at the Lord Mayor’s Show and even organised Zoom calls with Florence Nightingale for audiences in the UK and across the world.

Museum Information

Florence Nightingale Museum, 2 Lambeth Palace Road, London SE1 7EW

Admission prices (inc. exhibition): Adult £10.00; Child (under 16) £5.00; Student £6.00;

Concessions £8.00; Family £25.00; Children under 5 Free; Carers Free.

Opening hours: 10am – 5pm (last admission 4.30pm) Wednesday to Sunday; closed Monday and Tuesday (though the Museum can be booked by groups, including schools, on these days).

The Museum is a short walk from Waterloo station and Westminster tube, located in the grounds of St Thomas’ Hospital (on the corner of Westminster Bridge and Lambeth Palace Road), close to the Houses of Parliament and the London Eye.

For more information and tickets , visit the Museum website here

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in January 2014, we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
To find out more visit the website
here

A Short Guide to the Barbican Art Gallery

The Barbican Art Gallery is part of the Barbican Arts Centre which includes a theatre, cinema, conference centre, library and restaurants. The Gallery opened in 1982 and is known for its diverse arts programme which has featured art, architecture, design, fashion, photography and film.

The large exhibition space, created as part of the larger Chamberlin, Powell and Bon-designed Barbican Centre is two levels with balconies that give a very different perspective. The large open spaces have been used to create different exhibition spaces within the limits of the gallery.

Since its first exhibition, Aftermath France, 1945-54, the gallery has developed a reputation for taking on themes such as recent exhibitions like Masculinities: Liberation through Photography and Another Kind of Life: Photography on the Margins.

Some recent exhibitions have included Michael Clark: Cosmic Dancer, Lee Krasner, Dorothea Lange / Vanessa Winship, Basquiat, Trajal Harrell and Ragnar Kjartansson.

The Curve is a separate gallery space that uses the curve of the theatre to create an unusual space for mostly commissioned works. Admission is usually free.

Although tucked away in the concrete jungle of the Barbican, the Barbican Art Gallery offers an eclectic programme of art with prices generally lower that the main London galleries. The Barbican Centre is worth a visit for its unique architecture and interesting surroundings.

For more information and tickets, visit the Gallery website here

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in January 2014, we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
To find out more visit the website
here

A Short Guide to the Queen’s Gallery at Buckingham Palace

The Queen’s Gallery is a public art gallery connected to Buckingham Palace. It exhibits mostly works of art from the Royal Collection on a rotating basis.

The gallery forms part of the south wing of the Palace and was built on the site of a chapel bombed during the Second World War. The gallery opened in 1962 and was an instant success attracting up to 5 million visitors, until it was closed between 1999 to 2002 for extension. In 2002, the gallery was reopened by Elizabeth II with a new Doric entrance portico and new rooms, more than tripling the size of the old gallery.

The gallery was established to make the Royal Collection more accessible to the public and there are often three art exhibitions arranged annually at the gallery.

The Royal Collection has been formed mainly since the time of Charles II in the mid-17th century. It includes a high quality collection of oil paintings, watercolours, drawings, and prints, as well as items of gold, silver, jewellery, furniture, and other decorative art. Many pieces in the collection are loaned to different national museums and art galleries.

Recent exhibitions have included Russia: Royalty & the Romanovs, Shadows of War: Roger Fenton’s Photographs of the Crimea, 1855, Leonardo da Vinci: A Life in Drawing and George IV: Art & Spectacle.

Masterpieces from Buckingham Palace bought together some of the most important paintings in the Royal Collection from the Picture Gallery at Buckingham Palace. Usually on public view during the annual Summer Opening of the Palace, the paintings were shown in The Queen’s Gallery while works are carried out to protect the historic building for future generations.

The Picture Gallery was originally designed by the architect John Nash for George IV to display his collection of Dutch, Flemish and Italian Old Master paintings. Artists that were represented in the exhibition include Titian, Guercino, Guido Reni, Vermeer, Rembrandt, Van Dyck, Rubens, Jan Steen, Claude and Canaletto.

The Queen’s Gallery is one of the best smaller galleries in London and the quality of the artwork and decorative art is of the highest quality. The exhibitions are often quite eclectic with items that often have a fascinating history of their own.

For more information and tickets, visit the Gallery website here

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in January 2014, we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
To find out more visit the website
here

Review: The Old Operating Theatre Museum and Herb Garret in London

Tucked away in an old church near London Bridge station is one of London’s more unusual museums which tells the story of the long history of hospitals in this area and the sometimes gruesome story of surgical history.

The Old Operating Theatre Museum and Herb Garret in St Thomas Street is one of the oldest surviving operating theatres. It is located in the garret of St Thomas’s Church, Southwark, on the original site of St Thomas’ Hospital.

St Thomas’ is one of London’s oldest hospitals, operating in one form and another since the twelfth century. Originally part of the Priory of St Mary Overie, it was renamed The Hospital of St Thomas the Martyr following the canonisation of Thomas a Becket in 1173. Southwark at this time was the location for many brothels and theatres and developed a reputation for vice. At the Dissolution of the Monasteries in 1540, St Thomas’ was closed by Henry VIII and Beckett was decanonised. However the hospital was soon reopened but renamed the Hospital of St Thomas the Apostle.

Between 1693 and 1709 the hospital was rebuilt on a more permanent basis covering a wide area constructed around three courtyards. The rebuilt St Thomas’s could accommodate more than 400 patients and had nineteen wards, four of which were for venereal patients. The rebuilding also replaced the medieval church with the church which now houses the museum. At this time, Thomas Guy founded the nearby hospital, Guy’s, which still stands on the site.

An important medical advance in the eighteenth century was the introduction of operating theatres. These were often located on the top floor to ensure they received the benefit of daylight. In St Thomas’s, the male theatre was built in 1751 and the female theatre in 1821. Operations had to be carried out quickly, anaesthetics weren’t used until 1847 and antiseptic surgery was not introduced until the 1860s.

Florence Nightingale opened up her school for nurses at St Thomas’ in 1859, but in the same year the site of the Hospital was acquired by the Charing Cross Railway following Parliament’s decision to extend the London Bridge railway line from Greenwich across the River Thames. St Thomas’s left Southwark in 1862 and moved to Lambeth opposite the Houses of Parliament, most of its buildings in Southwark were demolished.

The church that contains the Old Operating Theatre Museum was built at the end of the 17th century, the new church was fitted out with a large garret constructed in the ‘aisled-barn’ tradition. The garret was fitted with wooden storage racks, and described as “the herb garret” in 1821. It is suggested that the garret was used by the hospital’s apothecary to store and cure medicinal herbs.

In 1822, part of the herb garret was converted into a purpose-built operating theatre. This is not as strange as it sounds because the female surgical ward was situated next to the garret. A skylight was put in and other windows added and other spaces may have been used as a recovery ward.

In 1862, when St Thomas’ Hospital moved, the Operating Theatre was partly dismantled and the entrances from the Hospital into the Garret were blocked up. It was then mainly forgotten, except for references in medical academic publications. In 1956, Raymond Russell was researching the history of St Thomas’ Hospital and decided to investigate the garret. He was amazed to find that although part of the operating theatre had been demolished, most of the structure had survived. Raymond Russell’s find was considered unique, no other 19th century operating theatre in Europe had survived. In 1962, after 100 years of disuse, the garret and operating theatre were opened to the public as a museum.

The collection was originally donated by various representatives of the London NHS Hospitals and by private donors to Lord Russell Brock, founder of the Old Operating Theatre Museum & Herb Garret. The original collection comprised of around three hundred items, over the years of the Museum’s existence, acquisitions to the collection have been acquired from private individuals and staff of St Thomas’ and Guy’s Hospitals.

The modern visitor goes from the bustle of the modern world in Thomas Street and walks up a series of narrow wooden stairs to be transported into a different world where the collection of artefacts revealing the horrors of medicine before the age of modern science

There is a large section on herbs and their use in medicine for centuries.

The medical displays includes: surgical and pharmaceutical objects, hospital furniture, a small collection of human pathology specimens and a small image collection.

A collection of artefacts revealing the horrors of medicine before the age of science. Includes instruments for cupping, bleeding, trepanning, and childbirth.

Displays on medieval monastic health care, the history of St Thomas’s, Guy’s Hospital and Evelina Children’s Hospital, Florence Nightingale and nursing, medical and herbal medicine.

The Apothecary was the equivalent of the modern chemist shop and hospitals used to employ people who had particular skills for mixing and understanding herbal and chemical ingredients. They often specially-shaped containers for potentially poisonous substances.

The Operating Theatre itself is a bit of surprise, being quite small and intimate. When you remember operations were often watched by up to one hundred medical students and with various people working in the theatre, it was no surprise that patients were often blindfolded. The museum staff often give entertaining talks about the horrors of surgery in the early 19th century, but as they often remark, many patients consented because it was a chance to survive a situation where the alternative was death.

The Old Operating Theatre Museum and Herb Garret is a unique attraction and one of London’s hidden gems. It is a must see for anyone medically minded but is a reminder for everyone the way that medicine has moved forward in the last two hundred years. Although we might recoil in horror at the operations and instruments, at the time they were state of the art and saved many lives. The setting of the museum is well worth a visit, the ‘aisled-barn’ roof of the church provides a wonderful backdrop to a fascinating museum.

Visitor Information

Address: Old Operating Theatre Museum and Herb Garret, 9a St Thomas Street, London, SE1 9RY.

Opening hours: Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, 10.30am – 5.00pm.

Access is limited as the Museum is in the attic space of a 320-year-old church. The entrance is via a 52-step narrow spiral staircase.

Admission: Adult: £7.50; Concessions: £6.00; Child 6-16 years: £4.50; Children under 6
years: Free; Family (2 adults, 2 children): £18.00.

Visiting London Guide Rating – Highly Recommended

For more information and tickets, visit the Museum website here

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in January 2014, we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
To find out more visit the website
here

Review: Freud Museum in London

The Freud Museum in London is a museum dedicated to Sigmund Freud and is located in the house where Freud lived with his family during the last year of his life. The house was built in 1920 in the leafy suburbs of Hampstead.

It was in 1938, when Freud escaped the Nazi annexation of Austria and came to London via Paris, and stayed for a short while at Elsworthy Road before moving to 20 Maresfield Gardens, where the museum is situated. The Freuds moved many of their furniture and household effects to London. There are Biedermeier chests, tables and cupboards, and a collection of 18th century and 19th century Austrian painted country furniture.

The museum owns Freud’s collection of Egyptian, Greek, Roman, and Oriental antiquities, and his personal library.

The highlight of the museum is Freud’s psychoanalytic couch, which had been given to him by one of his patients in 1890. Freud continued his work in London and maintained his practice in this home and used the couch when he saw a number of his patients for analysis.

Another couch in the study is where Freud died at Maresfield Gardens.

The ground floor of the museum houses Freud’s study, library, hall and the dining room. The study and library were preserved by Anna Freud after her father’s death. The bookshelf behind Freud’s desk contains some of his favourite authors such as Goethe, Shakespeare, Heine, Multatuli and Anatole France. The library contains various pictures hung as Freud arranged them; these include ‘Oedipus and the Riddle of the Sphinx’ and ‘The Lesson of Dr Charcot’ plus a number of photographs.

The small museum shop is on ground floor which leads into the quiet and tranquil garden where you can admire the house and the surroundings.

After Freud died, the house remained in his family until his youngest daughter Anna Freud, who became a pioneer of child therapy, died in 1982. It was Anna Freud’s wish that after her death that the house would be converted into a museum. The museum was opened to the public in 1986.

The first floor of the museum has Anna Freud’s room which includes items from her life, a video room, and exhibition room which hosts contemporary art and Freud-themed exhibitions.

Although the museum through its history and collections pays tribute to the work of Sigmund and Anna Freud, it encourages debate in a number of areas with an extensive events, conferences, outreach and education programmes.

Psychoanalysis was one of the major psychological breakthroughs of the 20th century, and even critics would have to concede that Sigmund Freud was one of the most important thinkers of the period.

This fascinating and attractive museum provides some insights into the work of Sigmund and Anna Freud, the quiet suburban house and garden is a perfect place to explore their ideas which questioned how ‘civilised’ we really are ? Freud’s famous and iconic psychoanalytic couch is the highlight of a collection that would appeal to wide range of people who perhaps would like to find out more about Freud and his ideas.

Address

Freud Museum London
20 Maresfield Gardens,
London NW3 5SX

Nearest Tube

Finchley Road
(Metropolitan and Jubilee lines)
5 minute walk

Visiting London Guide Rating – Highly Recommended

For more information and tickets, visit the Freud museum website here

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in January 2014, we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
To find out more visit the website
here

Review: Bow Street Police Museum in London

With many small museums facing an uncertain future, it is with some delight that we can report a new museum opening that explores one of London’s most famous police stations near to Covent Garden. Bow Street Police Station was one of London’s first police stations and has become the country’s newest independent museum. Bow Street Police Museum sits inside no. 28 Bow Street, home of Bow Street Police Station and Magistrates’ Court for over a century. The ground floor cells and offices have been turned into galleries, telling the story of the Bow Street Runners, the country’s first organised force, and how the Metropolitan Police officers who walked the streets of Covent Garden became an important part of the area.

Bow Street Police Museum is based within the new NoMad London Hotel, which now occupies the entire newly-restored building. The Museum will operate as an independent charity supported initially by the owners of the building, the Sydell Group, but eventually will becoming self-sufficient.

The Museum tells many of the stories of investigations, arrests and justice from 18th century crime fighting to the moment the police station closed its doors in 1992, followed by the court in 2006. The museum explores Bow Street’s unique role in police, law and social history and the workings of the first Metropolitan Police station. And as well as telling the stories of the historic, sometimes infamous, trials heard at Bow Street Magistrates’ Court, the Museum also considers aspects of police history, modern policing and social justice.

Among the collections to be displayed will be the original dock from Court no. 2;

early equipment used by the Bow Street Runners on patrol, including an original cutlass, a specially-made replica Runners uniform (featuring blue double-breasted coat, blue trousers, black felt hat, black boots and the red waistcoat that earned early officers the nickname ‘robin red breasts’);

a beautiful reproduction of a collection of sketches by court artist William Hartley;

and personal effects from former officers, including beat books, truncheons and items from their time on duty at Bow Street.

Visitors can also spend time in ‘the tank’, the large cell that was often the destination for men arrested for drunken behaviour in public.

Covent Garden was a thriving hub and market when in 1881, a new police station and courthouse opened in Covent Garden. For the next century and beyond, the building and Metropolitan Police officers was a reassuring presence in the area.

People arrested by police officers at Bow Street were held overnight and tried at the Magistrates’ Court next door. The Court held a unique status that enabled it to deal with extradition proceedings, terrorist offences and cases related to the Official Secrets Act. This brought a string of notable cases to Bow Street, including IRA terrorist cases and the extradition cases against the former dictator of Chile, General Augusto Pinochet. The Museum shares some of the tales of many of those who found themselves up before Bow Street’s judges, including the Kray Twins, Dr Crippen, Oscar Wilde and suffragettes Sylvia and Christabel Pankhurst and Mrs Drummond.

The Museum also considers the life and times of Covent Garden, exploring how the market, theatreland, shops, bars, restaurants presented unique problems to Bow Street Police Station and the police officers.

The new museum is quite small and is well located opposite the Royal Opera House and near to Covent Garden itself. Many of the old Police stations in London have been sold and are now redeveloped therefore this is a rare opportunity to visit one of the most famous police stations in London. The museum is well designed and uses the cells to tell the various stories related to the police station and the people who worked there. Bow Street Police Museum is a welcome addition to the large number of small museums in London and once visitors start making their way to Covent Garden, hopefully it will attract plenty of visitors.

VISITOR INFORMATION

Venue: Bow Street Police Museum, 28 Bow Street, London WC2E 7AW
Admission: Entrance: £6.00; Concessions: £4.50 / £3.00; Children under 12 and carers: free
Opening: For the first six months the museum will operate three days a week Fri- Sun, 11.00 – 16.30

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in  2014 , we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
To find out more visit the website here

Museums, Art Galleries and Attractions in London reopening May 2021

Following the latest lockdown, many of London’s attractions, art galleries and museums are reopening in May 2021. Here is a limited list but remember that restrictions may apply and visit websites for latest information.

British Library,
exhibitions reopen 17 May

British Museum,
Reopens 17 May

Charles Dickens Museum,
Reopens 19 May

Imperial War Museum,
Reopens 19 May

Museum of London,
Reopen 19 May

Museum of London Docklands,
Reopen: 19 May

National Gallery,
Reopening 17 May

National Army Museum,
Reopening 19 May

National Maritime Museum,
reopen 17 May

Natural History Museum,
Reopen 17 May

Queen’s Gallery,
reopen 17 May

Royal Academy, reopen 17 May

Tate Britain,
reopen 17 May

Tate Modern,
reopen May 17

Postal Museum,
Reopen: 20 May

Victoria and Albert Museum,
reopens 19 May

Whitechapel Gallery,
reopen 19 May

Emirates Air Line Cable Car
Open Now!

Kew Gardens
Open Now!

Climb the O2 Arena
Open Now!

Harry Potter Studio Tour
From 17 May 2021

Buckingham Palace Gardens Summer 2021!
Book Now

Tower of London
Open from 19 May

Cutty Sark & Royal Observatory Greenwich
Open from 17 May

The London Eye
From 17 May 2021

Westminster Abbey
Open from 21 May

St Paul’s Cathedral
Open from 17 May

Windsor Castle
From 17 May 2021

Churchill War Rooms
Reopening 17 May 2021

Madame Tussauds London
From 17 May 2021

Sea Life London
From 17 May 2021

The View from The Shard
From 19 May 2021

Shrek’s Adventure
From 17 May 2021

Hampton Court Palace & Gardens
Opening Soon

London Dungeon
Open from 17 May

Kensington Palace
Opening Soon

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in January 2014, we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
To find out more visit the website here

Royal Museums Greenwich Reopening on 17 May 2021

Royal Museums Greenwich has announce the reopening of the National Maritime Museum, Queen’s House, Cutty Sark and Royal Observatory Greenwich on 17 May 2021.

The National Maritime Museum and Queen’s House grounds, the Parkside café and shop have been open to public since 12 April 2021 and from 7 May 2021 visitors will get the chance to dine in the Queen’s House Dining Domes.

During lockdown, the museum carried out various restoration works across the sites and developed a one-way system and some restrictions will initially be in place to ensure the safety of all visitors and staff. Protective screens in the ticket hall and gift shop will be in place. Sanitiser stations will also be available throughout the sites, although to ensure we meet safety guidelines, some interactives will not be accessible.

Tickets must be purchased in advance to ensure social distancing can be maintained on site. Pre-booked time slots ensure that visits are spread throughout the day and sites don’t exceed their capacity.

At the National Maritime Museum, visitors will be able to see images of the cosmos from the world-renowned astrophotography competition Insight Investment Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2020.

Another fascinating exhibition reopening its doors at the National Maritime Museum is the Exposure: Lives at Sea. Bringing together photography taken around the world by those in the maritime sector, this exhibition shines a light on the forgotten but integral work of seafarers.

In collaboration with the National Portrait Gallery, Royal Museums Greenwich will host a major exhibition exploring royal portraiture, opening on 28 May 2021. Tudors to Windsors: British Royal Portraits will give visitors the opportunity to come face-to-face with the kings, queens and their heirs who have shaped British history and were so central to Greenwich. The exhibition will include over 150 works covering five royal dynasties. These are mainly drawn from the unparalleled collection of the National Portrait Gallery, and feature some of the most important artists to have worked in Britain, from Sir Peter Lely and Sir Godfrey Kneller to Cecil Beaton and Annie Leibovitz.

On 17 May 2021 the Queen’s House will be ready to welcome back the public and showcase its incredible artwork collection including works by Reynolds and Canaletto, and the display Faces of a Queen: The Armada Portraits of Elizabeth I. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see the three surviving Armada portraits; Royal Museums Greenwich’s portrait, and versions from the National Portrait Gallery and Woburn Abbey, side by side in Greenwich.

Also in the Queen’s House, visitors will have the unprecedented opportunity to access for free the Woburn Treasures, the outstanding private art collection of The Duke and Duchess of Bedford, whilst Woburn Abbey is closed for refurbishment. The exhibition includes works by distinguished artists such as Van Dyck, Reynolds, Gainsborough, Poussin and Canaletto.

Cutty Sark, the last-surviving tea clipper in the world, will open its doors once again and the visitors will explore its remarkable history as the fastest, record-breaking ship of its era. Just in time for the half-term, there will be tours to learn the lesser-known extraordinary stories of the Cutty Sark. There is also a brand new exciting experience starting June 2021, ‘Cutty Sark Rig Climb Experience’, where visitors will be able to climb from the main deck up the ship’s rigging to experience the heights the crew would have had to scare on a daily basis when out at sea.

Additionally, the Royal Observatory Greenwich, the historic home of time and space, will open the North side, which includes the Prime Meridian line, the Flamsteed House, the Camera Obscura and the Great Equatorial Telescope. Visitors will be able to see the magnificent craftmanship of John Harrison’s marine timekeepers, the apartments of the Royal Astronomers and learn about their work and lives at the observatory and step on the historic Prime Meridian line that divides the Eastern and Western hemispheres of the Earth.

For more information , visit the Royal Museums Greenwich website here

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in 2014, we attract thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
To find out more visit the website here

Bow Street Police Museum due to open 2021

Photograph by Cristian Barnett

In early 2021, one of London’s first police stations will become the country’s newest independent museum. Bow Street Police Museum will sit inside no. 28 Bow Street, home of Bow Street Police Station and Magistrates’ Court for over a century. The ground floor cells and offices will become galleries, telling the story of the Bow Street Runners, the country’s first organised force, and the Metropolitan Police officers who walked the streets of Covent Garden in their footsteps.

Bow Street Police Museum is due to open in early 2021. It will sit within the new NoMad London Hotel, which will occupy the entire newly-restored building. The Museum will operate as an independent charity supported initially by the owners of the building, the Sydell Group, but eventually becoming self-sufficient.

Photograph by Cristian Barnett

The Museum will be filled with stories of investigations, arrests and justice being served, from 18th century crime fighting to the moment the police station closed its doors in 1992, followed by the court in 2006. Along the way, it will explore Bow Street’s unique role in police, law and social history and the workings of the first Metropolitan Police station. And as well as telling the stories of the historic, sometimes infamous, trials heard at Bow Street Magistrates’ Court, the Museum will also instigate discussions about many aspects of police history, modern policing and social justice.

Photograph by Cristian Barnett

Among the collections to be displayed will be the original dock from Court no. 2; early equipment used by the Bow Street Runners on patrol, including an original cutlass, a specially-made replica Runners uniform (featuring blue double-breasted coat, blue trousers, black felt hat, black boots and the red waistcoat that earned early officers the nickname ‘robin red breasts’); a beautiful reproduction of a collection of sketches by court artist William Hartley; and personal effects from former officers, including beat books, truncheons and items from their time on duty at Bow Street. Visitors will also be invited to spend time in ‘the tank’, the large cell that was often the destination
for men arrested for drunken behaviour in public.

Photograph by Cristian Barnett

In 1881, a new police station and courthouse opened in Covent Garden. For the next century and beyond, the building was a hive of activity and Metropolitan Police officers patrolled the streets, dealing with everything that came their way. People came in and out of the main station door all day and night, and officers took calls from the public, sent colleagues to incidents, interviewed suspects,
completed paperwork and oversaw prisoners.

People arrested by police officers at Bow Street were held overnight and tried at the Magistrates’ Court next door. The Court held a unique status that enabled it to deal with extradition proceedings, terrorist offences and cases related to the Official Secrets Act. This brought a string of notable cases to Bow Street, including IRA terrorist cases and the extradition cases against the former dictator of
Chile, General Augusto Pinochet. The Museum will share the tales of many of those who found themselves up before Bow Street’s judges, including the Kray Twins, Dr Crippen, Oscar Wilde and suffragettes Sylvia and Christabel Pankhurst and Mrs Drummond.

The Museum will also trace the life and times of Covent Garden, exploring how the market, theatreland, shops, bars, restaurants intertwined with Bow Street. Given their location, officers devoted much of their time to working closely with the hundreds of traders that filled Covent Garden’s fruit, vegetable and flower market, and sharing the time of day – and a cup of tea if they were in luck – with locals.

VISITOR INFORMATION

Venue: Bow Street Police Museum, 28 Bow Street, London WC2E 7AW
Admission: Entrance: £6.00; Concessions: £4.50 / £3.00; Children under 12 and carers: free
Opening: For the first six months we will operate three days a week Fri- Sun, 11.00 – 16.30

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in  2014 , we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
To find out more visit the website here

The National Maritime Museum in Greenwich reopens on 7 September 2020

Royal Museums Greenwich have announced the reopening of the National Maritime Museum on 7 September. Visitors will once again be able to explore the story of Britain and the sea through science, trade, conflict, work and leisure in the world’s largest maritime collection.

The Insight Investment Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2019 exhibition has been extended to 13 September. Visitors can gaze upon exceptional astrophotography revealing the secrets the Universe, including the winning image, ‘Into the Shadow’ by Hungarian photographer László Francsics.

Entry to the National Maritime Museum will remain free. Time slots will have to be pre-booked online and a one-way visitor route will be in place.

In line with the government’s announcement on 31 July, face coverings must be worn inside the museum. Protective screens in the ticket hall and gift shop will be installed and sanitiser stations will also be available throughout to ensure the safety of all visitors and staff.

Initially, the interactive All Hands Children Gallery and Ahoy! Children’s Gallery will remain closed.

The announcement follows the phased approach to reopening Royal Museums Greenwich announced earlier this summer. Cutty Sark reopened on 20 July, the Royal Observatory Greenwich opened in part on 3 August and the Queen’s House reopened on 10 August.

At the Queen’s House, Faces of a Queen: The Armada Portraits of Elizabeth I will run until 31 August 2020. This is the first time the three surviving portraits have been displayed together in their 430-year history.

Additionally, Woburn Treasures has been extended until Easter 2021. This exhibition is a major collaboration, which will see significant works from the private art collection of The Duke and Duchess of Bedford on show in the Queen’s House. The collaboration marks the first time significant collection pieces have been on public display in a national museum since the 1950s.

For more information , visit the Royal Museums Greenwich website here

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in 2014, we attract thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
To find out more visit the website here