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The Foundling Museum

40 Brunswick Square, London WC1N 1AZ, England
+44 20 7841 3600
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$97.74*
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London Pass Including Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour and Entry to Over 60 Attractions
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The Foundling Museum explores the history of the Foundling Hospital, the UK’s first children’s charity and first public art gallery, and through a dynamic programme of exhibitions and events celebrates the ways in which artists of all disciplines have helped improve children’s lives for over 275 years. The Foundling Hospital, which continues today as the children’s charity Coram, was established in 1739 by the philanthropist Captain Thomas Coram, as ‘a hospital for the maintenance and education of exposed and deserted young children’. Instrumental in helping Coram realise his vision were the artist William Hogarth, who encouraged leading artists of the day to donate work, and the composer George Frideric Handel, who gave annual benefit concerts of his Messiah. In doing so, they created London’s first public art gallery and their creative generosity set the template for the ways in which the arts can support philanthropy. The Foundling Museum celebrates their vision and continues their work by enabling artists, musicians and writers to work alongside vulnerable young people and cast new light on the histories we tell.
  • Excellent50%
  • Very good36%
  • Average10%
  • Poor3%
  • Terrible1%
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Closed Now
All hours
Hours Today: 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Suggested Duration: 1-2 hours
LOCATION
40 Brunswick Square, London WC1N 1AZ, England
Bloomsbury
CONTACT
Website
+44 20 7841 3600
Write a ReviewReviews (375)
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"thomas coram"
in 36 reviews
"court room"
in 15 reviews
"national trust members"
in 8 reviews
"brunswick square"
in 8 reviews
"william hogarth"
in 7 reviews
"heart rending"
in 5 reviews
"raise funds"
in 5 reviews
"art fund card"
in 4 reviews
"moving experience"
in 6 reviews
"royal academy"
in 6 reviews
"art collection"
in 6 reviews
"fascinating insight"
in 5 reviews
"kings cross"
in 6 reviews
"couple of hours"
in 12 reviews
"interesting visit"
in 4 reviews
"special exhibition"
in 4 reviews
"well worth the visit"
in 4 reviews
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11 - 20 of 365 reviews

Reviewed January 3, 2018 via mobile

England’s first public art gallery and first hospital for abandoned babies was started by Tomas Coram in 1739. Coram, a successful sea captain, set up the hospital to care for orphans and babies whose mothers were too poor to look after them. Helped by his...More

Thank beehive36
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 26, 2017

We came across this museum by accident, but we're glad we didn't pass it by. The experiences of the children (good and bad) are beautifully conveyed and some of the displays (the Elastoplasts and the medicine bottles) are simply magical. This is a quiet and...More

2  Thank brianchrystal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 21, 2017

Excellent museum with knowledgeable staff. Displays are very well presented although the lighting could be improved in some of the less delicate cases. Definitely opt for a guided tour as you will learn so much more.

1  Thank BloggerJR
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed November 17, 2017 via mobile

We visited with 60 students and were welcomed very warmly by the staff who gave us a historical overview and helped with our luggage. The museum is really interesting and shows some sad and uplifting stories. Our students study Educational subjects and loved the museum.

Thank thamara42
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 13, 2017

Long awaited wish to visit here. Helps if you know the history as the exhibits are fairly sparse and not much to view in terms if artefacts. However the spoken taped history from residents is incredibly informative and the collection of tokens left with the...More

Thank b00sun
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 5, 2017

I didn't know about this place before I went on a free walking guided tour with BEE Midtown. I would thoroughly recommend it. We concentrated on one exhibit as this was just an introductory tour to six different museums, but I plan to go back...More

1  Thank CheekyLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 31, 2017 via mobile

This is another little gem of a museum tucked away in a quiet part of the city Lots of stuff to reflect upon in terms of how we see children in our society Plus some great art work and restored interiors

Thank JCDown
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 29, 2017

This museum presents the story of child abandonment in the 17-18th century and life in an orphanage in a very moving way. There have been stories about foundlings in the 20th century as well, what's more some signs of current work with different communities on...More

Thank HU_rabbit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 23, 2017 via mobile

This is a very interesting museum. The problem of children having to be abandon in London during the 17th and 18th century for one reason or another was epic. This place tells us the story, what was done and made one aware of how huge...More

Thank annasenf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 13, 2017

Wow, what a great little museum. The exhibition about the setting up of the Foundling Hospital was just great. I loved all those tiny little tokens and each had a sad and emotional tale to tell. And the books where each new baby was registered...More

1  Thank Caldie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Nearby
Bloomsbury
Snuggly nestled within Central London is academic and
leafy Bloomsbury, an area that boasts walking distance
access to many of London's most popular attractions.
It is also home to some of Britain's most celebrated
museums, including the must-see British Museum.
Despite an understandable popularity with students,
tourists and day trippers, vast sections of Bloomsbury
retain a quiet, residential feel year round and
...More
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Questions & Answers
Liz H
April 10, 2017|
AnswerShow all 12 answers
Response from Simon J | Reviewed this property |
We had spent about an hour and a half inside. Moving and worth every penny.
1
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OldBoyBradford_U_K_
August 21, 2015|
AnswerShow all 6 answers
Response from Jooles2 | Reviewed this property |
Yes, information about Coram himself. I don't recall much about his family. It focuses on the foundlings. Well worth a visit. Beautifully presented and with a very nice cafe for a snack!
1
Vote
Iain M
June 4, 2015|
AnswerShow all 4 answers
Response from teenager65 | Reviewed this property |
Adults £8.25 (including voluntary Gift Aid donation of 75p) Concessions £5.50 (including voluntary Gift Aid donation of 50p) Children (up to sixteen years), Art Fund members and Foundling Friends visit FREE
1
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