Tuesday, December 18, 2007

The Museum of Childhood in Bethnal Green

We took Simon's mum to the Museum of Childhood in Bethnal Green, one of two interesting local museums (the other being the Geoffrey Museum, a series of rooms decorated in the changing fashions of ages). It's a great place and now features more displays since it's had a revamp and been integrated with the V & A. There are Victorian dollhouses, a Space Age exhibition ("Please touch the meteor") and old and not quite so old toys throughout the ages. Highlights include a couple of Chinese miniature rock gardens detailing everyday life in 17th century China, a dollhouse found and restored by the wonderful writer Denton Welsh (I had heard about that but had forgotten it until I saw it on display!) and - right above - a 50s toy garage that used to be in Simons old family house (exactly the same model!) and later reused (or abused - depending how you look at it) as a headquarter for the Daleks (though that is contested now). Simon claims he recognizes quite a few of the toys actually. Great fun! Mostly full of kids and their parents, but with a fair smattering of local hipsters too, it was a good way to spend a rainy Sunday afternoon! 

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