The Museum of Childhood is spread over 4 floors, with the Mezzanine and First Floor acting like a balcony around the edge of the building so you can look down over the ground floor central hall with the shop, Information Desk, and Benugo Café.
- Fully accessible (building refurbishment completed in 2006)
- Buggy Park in lobby
- Always free activities for kids
- Lovely tea and coffee!
- Can be warm inside
Visit Duration:1.5 hour
The Museum is part of the V&A family of museums, and houses the national childhood collection. There has been a museum on this site since 1872. The Museum of Childhood is housed in a large Victorian building in east London. It has undergone extensive refurbishment and reopened in 2006 and an elevator (lift) now makes all floors accessible.
Opening HoursOpen Daily: 10am – 5.45pm.
Last admission is 5.30pm.
The Museum is closed on 25 and 26 December and 1 January every year.
AdmissionAdmission to the Museum is free.
There is a small charge for some activities.
Contact detailsAddress: V&A Museum of Childhood, Cambridge Heath Road, London E2 9PA
Telephone: 020 8983 5200
Official Website: www.museumofchildhood.org.uk
Nearest Tube Station: Bethnal Green
Use Journey Planner to plan your route on public transport.
Café BenugoThis café has the best Earl Grey tea I've tasted since I had afternoon tea at The Lanesborough! A pot of tea (2 cups) cost £1.75 and a muffin was £1.30. Hot and cold meals for children (and adults) are available all days, and there are plenty of highchairs for the young visitors.
Museum of Childhood Review
I was immediately hit be the noise in the galleries from children playing, music, and speakers on the exhibits. This is not a quiet place and children are allowed to have fun here. Child safety is paramount and a member of staff remains by the front door at all times. Also, note the 'Code of Behavior' notices which include: children under 12 must be supervised by an adult, no eating in the galleries, and no running (although this last one wasn't fully adhered to by most children!)
Toy exhibits are in glass cabinets but there are plenty of low level exhibits for younger children to see. The glass cabinets have lots of thought-provoking questions on them to encourage adult and child discussion, e.g. "What do they feel like?"
When you or the children need some quiet time, there are sofas at either end of the first floor with reading books available.First Floor Highlights
- Dolls houses from the 1700s
- Indoor beach (large sand pit)
- Victorian pram
- Under3s soft play area
- Dressing up clothes
The Mezzanine has simple interactive displays such as peep shows and spinning tops.Mezzanine Highlights
- Rolls Royce pedal car
- Rocking horses you can ride
- Touch screens to show even more toys
- Robbie the Robot: Turn his key to wind him up and (if you get it right) he comes alive.
- Model railway (20p coin needed to operate)
- Magnetic iron filings 'painting' table
- Sensory pod: textures, lights, etc.
- Craft corner