Relive the fun moments of your childhood
In the European Middle Ages childhood ended at the age of ten while at thirteen girls were already ready for marriage. In other parts of the world, as soon as they quit playing with toys, boys in the Royal families could receive liability fate of an entire country. Therefore, childhood was perceived and defined differently judging by cultural, ethnic, religious and other criteria. And now that I made a small introduction to a very short history of childhood, let us take a look at a museum dedicated to this chapter of life.
The Museum of Childhood is located in the district of Bethnal Green in London and it holds objects and artifacts beginning with the 16th century, taken from Victoria and Albert Museum collections. This venue began to be constructed in 1868 as the original headquarters of a local museum until 1974, when it received its current destination. In addition to toys, dolls, doll houses, games, puzzles or and other exhibitions, there is a wealth of articles on other aspects of childhood. The idea of a childhood museum started in the year 1922. Arthur Sabin was named head curator and was instructed to reorganize the museum. Noticing that it was frequently filled with bored noisy children, he sought to make it more child-friendly. As part of this endeavor, he set up a classroom and employed teachers. He also began to collect child-related objects. Queen Mary (the wife of King George V) joined him, donating many items, as well as Mrs. Greg of Leeds.
Over the following 23 years, this area of the collection became noticeably popular. Roy Strong became director of the V&A in 1973 and instigated changes that resulted in the Bethanal Green Museum re-opening in 1974 as the Museum of Childhood. Meanwhile, the collections continued to grow with new acquisitions from toy companies, BBC, members of the public and government funds. Despite its old continuously activity, no investment had been put into the building`s structure since the year 1872.
The Museum entered into the 21st century in very much need of attention. Thus, the new Director, Diane Lees, promised to look into the future. Caruso St John, the architect, was employed to do this and from October 2005 to December 2006 the Museum was closed for refurbishment. A new entrance was added with new toilets, lifts, and more teaching space, complementing other aspects of improved access. Note that the entrance to the museum is free, like in other major museums in London, and it is opened daily from 10.00 am -17.45 pm