Museum of London

The Museum of London was opened in 1976, when the City of London Corporation merged the collections of the Guildhall Museum with the London Museum at Kensington Palace.

It was housed in a purpose-built series of buildings at 150 London Wall in the City, built as part of the Barbican Estate. This sprawling modernist estate was representative of the way the City wanted to rebuild itself, still recovering from World War II and still clearing the rubble-strewn bomb-sites that pockmarked the city.

After nearly 48 years, the current site is about to close, in preparation for the museum’s move to its new home in Smithfield Market.

The museum as viewed from one of the City of London’s “pedways” – raised walkways that elevate pedestrians above road level.
The museum’s Rotunda from Aldersgate Street. The Rotunda is in fact a giant mausoleum that stores the 14,000 human remains that are part of the museum’s collection.
The iconic tiled façade of the museum.
The roofed entrance to the museum.
Inside the museum’s ticket hall.
The Sackler Hall in the museum is home to a café and is used as an event space.

The street that the museum is on, Roman Wall, didn’t get its name by chance. Portions of the original Roman city walls survive within the grounds of the museum, and can be seen from within it.

Visitors look at the Roman walls.

Within the museum, one of the most enduring and popular attractions is the “Victorian Walk”; a Victorian street complete with a pub you can sit in and shops that feel almost real.

Shops in the Victorian Walk.
A barber’s shop in the Victorian Walk.
A “Unic” taxi cab, one of the first licensed taxis in London, from 1908.

After nearly 50 years, the museum will move from its current site to a new one on the site of Smithfield Market. The London Wall site will admit its last visitors on 3 December 2022.

A model of the new museum site.
The General Market of Smithfield Market that will, one day, be home to the Museum of London.
The construction site within the General Market at Smithfield.