Victorian London - Buildings, Monuments and Museums - Bethnal Green Museum 

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Bethnal Green Branch of the South Kensington Museum. The Bethnal Green Branch Museum stands on a plot of ground purchased by contributions of residents in that district, and transferred in February, 1869, by the subscribers, to the Lords of the Committee of Council on Education, as a site for a local museum. The building, which was erected by parliamentary grant, is externally of brick; the interior consists in part of the materials of the temporary structure originally erected at South Kensington. It was opened on the 24th June, 1872,by their Royal Highnesses the Prince and Princess of Wales, and was for nearly three years mainly occupied by the magnificent collections of paintings and other works of art belonging to Sir Richard Wallace, Bart., M.P. On the withdrawal of these collections they were replaced by various contributions on loan, chief among which have been the Indian presents of H.R.H. the Prince of Wales and the paintings forming the Dulwich Gallery. A large Anthropological Collection, lent by Colonel Lane-Fox, occupies part of the basement. The rest of the space is occupied by the permanent collections of the Museum, illustrating food, animal products, &c. THE FOOD MUSEUM was first established and became part of the South Kensington Museum in 1857; it is arranged with the express object of teaching the nature and sources of food, representing the chemical composition of the various substances used as food, and the natural sources from which they have been obtained. As a branch of the South Kensington Museum,  this institution is managed by the same staff, and the regulations as to a admission, reception of objects, &c., are in all respects the same as in the parent museum. Omnibuses from the Mansion House pass close to the Museum; and trains run from Liverpool-st to Cambridge Heath station (within five minutes of the Museum) every ten minutes. Admission free from  10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Saturdays, and from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.. on Thursdays and Fridays. On Wednesdays, 6d., from 10 a.m. till dusk. NEAREST Railway Station, Cambridge Heath; Omnibus Routes, Hackney-road, Cambridge-road, and Bethnal Green-road; Cab Rank, Bethnal-green road. 

Charles Dickens (Jr.), Dickens's Dictionary of London, 1879

see also National Portrait Gallery - click here  

see also - South Kensington Museum - click here


Victorian London - Publications - History - The Queen's London : a Pictorial and Descriptive Record of the Streets, Buildings, Parks and Scenery of the Great Metropolis, 1896 - Bethnal Green Museum

Bethnal Green Museum - photograph


South Kensington Museum has a branch at Bethnal Green. a red-brick building with an iron interior, in the Cambridge Road, which connects Mile End Road with Mare Street, Hackney. This Museum was opened in 1872, by the Prince and Princess of Wales and it owes its establishment to the untiring efforts of various workers among the poor in the East End, and its immediate success to the late Sir Richard Wallace, who lent the art treasures collected by the late Marquis of Hertford. The things permanently housed here have to do mostly with animal and waste products, food, and entomology, the remaining space being occupied by loan exhibits. The national collection of portraits was hung here until the completion of the new gallery in St. Martin's Place. In front of the Museum is a handsome majolica fountain.

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Two Hundred and Fifty Views London, [no date - probably 1900s]