Sir John Soane Museum

Bringing big ideas to London’s young people 

It may be one of the UK’s smallest national museums, but the Sir John Soane Museum is big on atmosphere and ideas. Home to architect Sir John Soane in the 1700s, today, the building in Lincoln’s Inn Fields in Holborn houses an incredible 45,000 objects – everything from ancient Egyptian antiquities and Roman sculpture to models of contemporary buildings. In 2021, we gave a grant of £15,000 to fund free learning activities for children and young people at the museum. These include Saturday workshops for teenagers, creative holiday drop-in sessions for families, and a storytelling and play session for 2 to 5 year olds.

  • Our grant of £15,000 is funding free learning activities for children and young people at the museum.
  • Pre-pandemic, over 100 local children attended Saturday workshops at the Sir John Soane Museum, and over 200 attended the holiday workshops.
  • In 2019-20, over 300 pupils were visited by a member of the museum’s education team for an outreach activity at their school.

Learning in the community

Our grant will also help support the museum’s outreach programme. Led by museum staff and freelancers, it offers activities linked to the national curriculum. For example, a science-based session might explore sources of light and examine how Sir John Soane used and manipulated these in his architectural designs, before giving pupils the opportunity to experiment with light themselves. If schools can’t visit the museum, its education team can bring a range of objects and information out to them. Community learning and interaction is a key focus for the museum’s team as they aim to reach the widest range of people across the local area.

“Soane envisaged his Museum as an ‘academy of architecture’. Education is key to what we can offer.”
Emma Miles, Learning Manager, Sir John Soane Museum

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