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The Young V&A: What if children decided what museums should be like?

Kate, Princess of Wales, patron of the V&A, with children of Globe Primary school during a visit to open the Young V&A museum in Bethnal Green, London.

The newly opened Young V&A is the result of a seven-year consultation with more than 22,000 children to create three exhibitions.

No statues or centuries-old paintings are on display here. Instead, a wide selection of items, important to children, are laid-out, including books, toys, superheroes, and even prosthetic limbs. 

The three big galleries at Young V&A are called 'Imagine', 'Play' and 'Design', and are tailored to children from 0 to 14.

This place, as opposed to traditional museums, invites visitors to touch the items on display, and being loud is part of the experience; the museum has been set up to give an opportunity to learn while having fun.

"This is a museum we're doing for playing, for imagining, for designing, for hanging out with your friends," says Helen Charman, director, Young V&A.

The Young V&A was formerly known as the Museum of Childhood, but they invested €15 million (£13 million) to make this recent shift and shine as a museum for children.

Amid a cost of living crisis, the museum has made a point of making its space as accessible as possible.

"Making this museum free, we hope we're cutting down some of the barriers to accessing this and making sure that even when times are tough in our society, that there are places you can come," says Catherine Ritman-Smith, head of learning and engagement, Young V&A.

The Princess of Wales and Duchess of Cambridge officially inaugurated the building before its opening on 1 July.

Watch the video above to see more of the museum.

Posted on 04 Jul 2023 15:53 link