The Cartoon Museum London
London is a museum lovers paradise. I have a dream of spending a summer in London, sleeping in an tiny apartment in Notting Hill, shopping at the local markets, and spending my days exploring all of the museums London has to offer. That the majority of museums are kid friendly as well, which is just a cherry on top of the delicious cake.
But what if you are sick of battling the crowds at the major museums and want to go somewhere off the beaten track?
With some time to spare before seeing a musical on the West End, our group decided to do just that and visit the Cartoon Museum.
Snuggled in the back streets of Bloomsbury not far from the British Museum, and nestled next to a Pilates studio is the Cartoon Museum. Walking in, you land in a cartoon lovers dream shop, with everything from books to posters and everything memorabilia in between. But the good stuff is at the back.
The entry fee is 7 Pounds, and as they do not receive government funding, all proceeds go toward the operation of the museum. The entry fee is however only for adults, and the young at heart. When we asked the price for kids the friendly staff on the front desk quickly stated“We could never make kids pay to enjoy cartoons.” This is my type of place!
Our visit luckily coincided with the exhibition “The Inking Woman,” an exhibit dedicated to creative women in the cartoon industry. It couldn’t have been better timing as we ourselves were on a Mama/Daughter weekend, so it was great that the girls were able to gain insight into how difficult it can be for women in male-dominated professions. They also were able to see women who have succeeded, and who continue to succeed pursuing their dream job of being a cartoonist.
The kids explored the museum through an activity sheet provided, helping them to learn to not only the names of some of the artists but to also take a more in depth look at some of the pieces. That gave the Mums a chance to take their time a little bit and enjoy the art. There was something for everyone, in particularly a lot of political cartoons which got us to think about different issues from feminism to Donald Trump.
After exploring downstairs we popped up the stairs to explore further. However the highlight for the kids had to be the little drawing room in the back. Set up with tables and chairs and plenty of paper and pencils, it provides inspiration and encourages everyone to let their creative juices flow.
If you happen to be visiting London during half term, make sure you find out in advance if they have any workshops running. A variety of topics are offered— from “Super Heros vs Super Villains” to a “Manga Masterclass,” and I am told they are quite popular and book up quickly. What a great way to dive in a little deeper for those looking to find their inner artists! They also run adult workshops and other talks around whatever the current exhibition happens to be.
On the day we visited, the front desk was manned by two lovely and passionate women who were more than happy to chat about all things cartoon and of course the museum itself. Their passion for women cartoonists shone through.
The Cartoon Museum is located in Bloomsbury and is easily accessed by a short 5 minute walk from either Holborn or Tottenham Court Road Tube Station.
Feeding the kids:
There are quite a few little places to eat around the Cartoon Museum with a Pizza Express right on the corner next to it if your kids are famished. We walked a little further and enjoyed a British lunch at a pub called “The Crown”. If we would of walked further there is a great burger place called Byron. And you are also only a hop skip and a jump away from the West End with all its restaurants.
Good to know:
The Cartoon Museum is opened Tuesday to Sundays from 10.30 till 17.30. The are closed Mondays except for bank holidays. You can find The Cartoon Museum at 35 Little Russell Street London, WC1A 2HH.