It’s about eight years since I last visited the Museum of London, and it might be the final time as they’ll be on the move to a new site in Smithfields in a couple of years. The design of the whole Barbican area isn’t great, it puts road users first and it’s meant that the museum is only accessible by pedestrian bridges. It’s not ideal.
The stairs to get to the museum are gloomy, although they’ve done what they can to brighten them up a bit.
My ticket was for 10:00, which was when the museum opened, and a small queue had formed. There was the choice to visit an exhibition on some rock band, which I ignored, instead wanting just to see the permanent collection. The museum was sufficiently quiet to allow for social distancing, although the queues were much longer when I left the building. This is also the first museum I’ve been to which scans visitors on the way out, which makes sense so that they know how many people are still in the building.
The museum was sufficiently interesting, although the lighting in some places is quite poor. There are also some huge chunks of the city’s history missed out and although it’s inevitably impossible to show everything, there’s not much about industry or ethnography. Hopefully, the larger amount of space at the new museum will perhaps give them chance to tell these stories as well.
There are numerous interactive elements that visitors are usually welcome to touch or engage with, although they’ve had to put plexiglass over all of those. There was though no shortage of hand sanitiser around the museum and sufficient staff to monitor visitors without getting in the way.
Anyway, some photos below of the interior of the museum, more posts about some individual exhibits I liked will follow. At some point…..