Green light for go for V&A Museum of Childhood’s kaleidoscope stairs

Museum of Childhood's envisaged main hall with architect De Matos Ryan's kaleidoscope starircase cen

Museum of Childhood's envisaged main hall with architect De Matos Ryan's kaleidoscope starircase centrepiece. Picture: Darc Studio - Credit: Darc Studio

A major redevelopment of the famous Museum of Childhood has been given the green light by Tower Hamlets Council.

Museum of Childhood's envisaged main hall with architect De Matos Ryan's kaleidoscope starircase cen

Museum of Childhood's envisaged main hall with architect De Matos Ryan's kaleidoscope starircase centrepiece. Picture: Darc Studio - Credit: Darc Studio

Work begins late next year for three new galleries and a large exhibition space in the 147-year-old Grade II-listed Victorian building in Bethnal Green.

They include a learning centre for art and design education with studios, a 'kaleidoscope' staircase in the main hall inspired by optical toys from the museum's collection, better lighting and acoustics and a new café.

It is seen as "a significant milestone" by the V&A to become a museum of design and creativity for children and young people.

"The design is rooted in the needs of a 21st century audience while preserving the iconic Victorian structure," the museum's design director Pip Simpson explained.


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"This is our ambition to be a world-leading museum of design and creativity for young people."

The proposals first unveiled in the East London Advertiser a year ago have been refined through 30 design sessions involving Tower Hamlets schoolchildren, teachers and community groups.

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