Monday, 9 February 2015

Sir John Soane Museum London

I really should have started this blogging business when I stopped working at School a couple of years ago, as I decided that, after years of dashing here and there to ballet, tap, modern, rainbows, brownies, guides, gymnastics, archery, trampolining, swimming, beavers, cubs, scouts, music lessons, orthodontists, doctors, dentists, children's parties, work, etc (phew I'm worn out just thinking about it), I would have a day out somewhere I hadn't been before leaving the car behind and letting the train take the strain.

Buckingham Palace

View from Waterloo Bridge over the Thames

The natural place for exploration is London being reasonably close for a day trip and full of excellent areas to walk, buildings to admire, museums, galleries and exhibitions .  You don't have to spend a fortune as the streets are full of exciting architecture, parks have plenty of space, plants and flowers, there are fabulous riverside walks and many museums and galleries are free. I have an Art Fund card which also gives reductions for certain exhibitions.

I've come across some interesting places which have been something of a surprise. Today I'll mention Sir John Soane's museum.

Situated in Lincoln's Inn Fields not far from Holborn tube station, is the Architect Sir John Soane's house. When I first visited only one of the terraced houses was open but following restoration work, the next door house is now open too.

Facade of numbers 12 to 14 Lincoln's Inn Fields, Number 14 was also built by SoaneThe architect Sir John Soane’s house, museum and library at No. 13 Lincoln’s Inn Fields has been a public museum since the early 19th century. Soane demolished and rebuilt three houses in succession on the north side of Lincoln’s Inn Fields, beginning with No. 12 between 1792 and 1794, moving on to No. 13, re-built in two phases in 1808-9 and 1812, and concluding with No. 14, rebuilt in 1823-24.  (From the museum website)

When you enter, it is incredible that someone should have lived surrounded by all the antiquities and works of art. It feels like a mini British Museum with twists and turns, sculptures in the corridors with an art gallery thrown in. William Hogarth's A Rake's Progress is cleverly hidden behind panels. It certainly is a fascinating place. Have a look for yourself if you are passing and be prepared to be met at the door by a member of staff who will put your handbag in a plastic bag and keep it safe while you have a look around. There is also a shop.

Free entry, details and more information here Sir John Soane Museum

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