Friday, August 05, 2011

Imperial War Museum

London The Unfinished City
From Bethlem to Bedlam.

Friday August 5, 2011.

The Imperial War Museum (London branch) is one of my favourite museums. I cannot count the number of times that I have visited, but it would be in the high twenties. It holds a world-leading collection of artefacts from the earliest conflicts and wars through to those from current theatres of operation. 

Following a multi-million pound restoration, which saw the majority of the building redeveloped, including the entrance atrium, space has been created to show more objects from the collection, while creating additional exhibition areas.

Brief History

The museum is located in the old Bethlem Royal Hospital, in the grounds of Geraldine Mary Harmsworth Park, Southwark

The two 15-inch guns, one from the HMS Resolution and the other from HMS Ramillies, outside the building, give you an idea of what to expect inside the museum.

The idea for a National War Museum was first suggested in 1917, by Sir Alfred Mond, who wanted to create a collection of Britain's military material. 

The Imperial War Museum opened its doors in 1920 at the Crystal Palace. In 1924 it moved to the Imperial Institute building, South Kensington, before moving to its current location, in 1936.

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