Yesterday we visited the V&A Museum of Childhood. It was great to reminisce over their toy collection but I have to say that I don’t think it was all that great for children. At least not my child anyway.
Maybe if you have a child who will walk with you through the galleries – because there’s no running allowed in the Museum – and hold discussion about the intricate woodwork on display in the Victorian dollshouses – because the collection is behind glass, then super.
For us there was a lot of, “I want that car!” and “I want to ride on that bike,” being shouted from Sun, and us literally having to hold him back from running from one display to the next. Quite hard work! It did seem a bit cruel that we had taken him to a place where he could see hundreds of amazing toys but not actually play with any of them.
It would be slightly unfair of me if I didn’t mention that there were areas where children can play with things, but they were small and the number of children wanting to play outnumbered the activities on offer. And we went on a quiet Monday morning, I dread to think what it would have been like last week when it was school holidays.
Sun enjoyed dressing up as a wizard though, which was very apt considering it was Halloween.
And we had fun tripping out Shine with the magic eye display.
Once we had walked very briskly through the galleries we retired to the cafe and ate cake. That, we are very good at doing!
Looking at their toy collection it did make you think about what will be on display in the future to represent play today. I wonder what toys will transport Sun and Shine back to their own childhood, as I found myself doing as I looked at the Pound Puppies and Sindy dolls.
Oh and I definitely think the Museum should think about making an adult play area where you can spend an hour or so playing with He-Man in one of the amazing dollshouses they have. I bet that would be very popular indeed! I’d leave the children at home and go spend an afternoon playing and reliving my childhood, that’s for sure.