Entry fee? – Free entry
Brief description of the collection? – Sir John Soane’s museum is a home to an eclectic mix of paintings, architectural pieces and antiquities collected by the famous architect himself throughout his lifetime. Aiming to bring the nature of the ‘Grand Tour of Europe’ throughout the eighteenth century back to London, Soane collected a plethora of ancient treasures and artefacts which have intricately displayed in a chaotic fashion throughout every inch of the museum. The museum offers a unique experience, and is well worth a visit when visiting the area.
Opening times? – Open Wednesday to Sunday, 10:00 to 17:00. Last entry at 16:30.
Photography allowed? – no, unfortunately photography is not allowed in the museum.
Top 3 things not to be missed? –
- The ancient Egyptian sarcophagus of King Seti (or Sety) located in the catacombs (Ask one of the museum attendants for the fascinating back story – or read our blog post on the museum)
- ‘Admiral Van Tromp’s barge at the entrance to the Texal, 1645’ – an important maritime painting by JMW Turner, which is located in the north drawing room (JMW Turner was a close friend of Soane!)
- Hidden away amongst the jumble of the Colonnade, is a 5th-century BC sculpture of a goddess that originally adorned the Erechtheion (an important temple located opposite the acropolis in ancient Athens) see if you can spot her headless figure!
Food and Drink facilities? – no, unfortunately there are no food and drink facilities on sight. However, the museum has partnered with Benugo to offer visitors with discount vouchers for the Fields Bar & Kitchen which is located just opposite the Museum.
Interactive technology? – no interactive technology on sight, however an extensive chunk of the collection has been catalogued online for those who may wish to research and explore the collection further. Link here: (http://collections.soane.org/home?_ga=2.140161008.2105501819.1529934149-1163316278.1529934149)
Facilities for kids? – no, there are no specifically dedicated facilities for children in the museum.
Guides? – A guide book can be purchased for £3 upon entry to the museum, and knowledgeable attendants are in most of rooms within the museum should you need any help or like to know more about any of the exhibits.
Tours? – yes, tours are available for the private apartments of the Soane family which are not usually open to the public. Tours of the ‘highlights’ of the museum itself are led by an expert curator, and are available for a fee of £12.50 pp.
Nearest station/ Tube? – Holborn station is a five-minute walk, and Temple station a 15-minute walk.
Bus routes? – Buses 1, 59, 68, 91, 168, 171, 188, 243, 521, and X68 stop on Kingsway. Buses 8, 25, and 242 stops on High Holborn.
Location – Longitude/ Latitude? – 51.517265, -0.117427
Postcode/ address- 13 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, London WC2A 3BP.
Visitors who are Deaf or hard of hearing:
Induction loops are offered at both the front desk and in the museum shop, and if visitors are attending lectures or museum events then induction loops can be set up before visiting if staff are made aware upon booking.
Visitors who are Blind or partially sighted:
Audio or touch tours of the museum are available for pre-booking before the visit and large-print copies of exhibition labels and panels are available for borrowing throughout the duration of your visit. The museum also offers a large-print or braille version of our short guide to the museum.
The museum advises visitors to visit during the day, due to their minimal usage of artificial light to preserve the collection. However, torches or additional overhead lighting can be offered to visitors upon their visit.
A guide dog policy has been developed by the museum, through advice from the Guide Dogs Association. If you use an assistance dog, they recommend leaving them with staff in a designated safe space (where they’ll have plenty of water) during your visit. To bring your dog with you into the Museum, you have to be accompanied by a member of staff, both for your dog’s safety and your own. The museum therefore, ask that visitors let staff know before visiting by calling 020 7405 2107.
Visitors with mobility impairments:
There is an Internal and external platform lift available for step-free access to the Museum. Please call ahead so that a member of staff can be on hand to operate the lift as, due to the Grade 1 listing, the lift cannot be in a public space.
If you are using crutches or a walking stick, you should be able to go everywhere inside the museum. However, some spaces are too narrow for walking frames. If you would like to borrow one of the museums custom wheelchairs, please call ahead and ask.
Standard wheelchairs are usually too big for the narrow corridors and doorways of the museum, so visitors with wheelchairs larger than 41cm wide, 84cm deep and a height of 82cm, will be asked to transfer to one of the museums specially manufactured narrow wheelchairs. The Museum can be narrow and difficult to manoeuvre in; so therefore, require that a member of staff pushes you throughout your visit.
Such resources are limited so therefore, require that visitors with disabilities call at least 24 hours ahead. To organise your visit, please call 020 7405 2107
Visitors with learning difficulties-
Easy read information guides developed by members of The Camden Advocacy Project are available from the link below, with printed copies also available to borrow in the museum as well.