Imperial War Museum London | IWM

Lambeth Road, London
Greater London, United Kingdom
Phone: +44 (0)20 7416 5000
closed on: open daily, except December 24, 25 & 26
Museum Type: History / City

The Imperial War Museum London is a British museum of modern history, focusing on conflicts and paying special attention to people’s experience of war and wartime life.

Building and site
The museum,  now part of the IWM UK network, was founded in 1917 to celebrate the British effort during the Great War and was originally housed in the famous Crystal Palace, built for the first World Fair in 1851; in 1936 it was relocated to its current home in the former Bethlem Royal Hospital in Lambeth, Central London.
In 2014, the museum underwent a major renovation, designed by Foster + Partners and Casson Mann architects.

What to see at the IWM London
The permanent exhibition of the Imperial War Museum London is currently divided into 10 chronological galleries, from the First World War up to present-day conflicts and, as anticipated, pays special attention to the stories, voices, and personal experiences of the persons directly involved in a war.
The exhibition presents rare artifacts, dioramas, models, artworks, photographs, audiovisuals, original documents, and interactive exhibits, capable to involve the visitor in a rich, articulated, and impressive contemporary experience.
A famous installation, entitled Witnesses to War, composed of large original artifacts, including a Spitfire aircraft, a V2 rocket, and a T-34 Russian tank, arranged so that they seem to float in the air, is located in the museum’s Atrium.

Additional services
The museum organizes special exhibitions, guided tours, and educational programs, particularly suited to children and schools.
The Imperial War Museum London’s building, fully accessible to people with disabilities, includes a cafe, and a gift shop.

Photos: by Greg Smith; courtesy of Imperial War Museum; 1 and banner by Richard Ash, courtesy of Imperial War Museum; 2 and 3 courtesy of Casson Mann

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