The V&A Museum of Childhood is housed in an extraordinary building. The iron frame was taken from the museum that formerly housed much of the collection now seen at the Victoria and Albert Museum. The frame was transported and a striking redbrick shell built around to the design of J W Wild. The exterior is adorned with mosaics by F W Moody and the interior floor is a marble mosaic built by female prisoners from Woking Gaol. The museum was opened in 1872 by the Prince and Princess of Wales. Among the original exhibits were the 1,600 paintings which now form the Wallace Collection and several exhibits from the Great Exhibition. During the 1920s, Curator Arthur Sabin began to encourage local schools to visit and gave lectures which focussed on the children. The Museum began to focus solely on the concept of childhood and relevant exhibits were transferred from other museums. In 1974 the Museum was officially redefined as a Museum of Childhood and adopted the name Bethnal Green Museum of Childhood. In October 2005 the Museum was closed for refurbishment, reopening in December 2006 as the V&A Museum of Childhood. A new entrance was added with new toilets, lifts and more teaching space, complementing other aspects of improved access.
V&A Museum of Childhood
Museum in Bethnal Green
V&A Museum of Childhood Picture Gallery
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