Everything You Need To Know About The London Transport Museum

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Everything You Need To Know About The London Transport Museum

London is a city built on its tourism industry. With historic landmarks, world-renowned cultural centres and museums, the city draws in tens of millions of tourists a year for good reason. Amidst the hustle and bustle of central London, one museum is often overlooked by guests of Piccadilly Hotels in London – the London Transport Museum.

London is famous for its many transport systems, and as a city spanning over 1500 square kilometres, it’s unsurprising that over its near-2000 year history, there have been many modes of transport, public and private, to have graced the Roman roads and East End lanes. Guests of Indian afternoon tea London hotels are no doubt aware of the many tube stations and bus stops near to their accommodation, and the London Transport Museum is a key museum for learning more about this technological feat and the long history behind London transport efficiency.

History Of The London Transport Museum

The London Transport Museum – or LTM – is based in Covent Garden and explores the designs, heritage and transport systems of London public and private services. With two sites in the city, the modern iteration of the museum was originally opened in 1980 within a Victorian flower market cover in Covent Garden. However, there has actually been a transport focused museum in London as far back as the 19th century with what was once the British Transport Museum originally situated in Clapham before its collection expansion necessitated a move to its current location. A second “depot” site is located in Acton and tours are available there as well.

Ticket Prices

Spanning two floors, the Covent Garden site is a large museum that is easily reachable from Covent Garden tube station. Guests of hotels in the West End can easily buy tickets for the Covent Garden museum. Prices range from between £17 for adults, or £16 online, £14.50 for students and seniors, and £12.50 for each person in a group of 10 adults or more. The museum is open from 10 am till 6 pm from Mondays to Thursdays and weekends and between 11 am and 6 pm on Fridays.

Galleries

If you’re still not sold on getting down to this unique and highly informative museum, you’ll find an overview of the Covent Garden galleries below. 

On The Surface – 1945 To Today

The 1945 to present day gallery at the London Transport Museum showcases many of the most famous London vehicules, including Routemaster red buses, former iterations of tube carriages and many more iconic vehicles. Visitors can learn about how designs and innovations changed over the years and the evolution of the efficient public transport system of London that is so well known today.

On The Surface – 1900 – 1945

What many people may not know is that London has had a public transport system way into the past. This gallery, however, explores the early 20th century history of the London public transport system, showing how the industrial revolution, World War One and the mainstream introduction of the automobile, changed London transport forever.

Future Engineers

They might not be old enough to drive, but that doesn’t mean children can’t enjoy the London Transport Museum as well. The accessible and interactive exhibits of Future Engineers explore problems faced by modern day engineers and pits customers against common conundrums in the design and engineering world. From driving an Elizabeth Line tube carriage to fixing trains and city planning eco-friendly urban areas, the Future Engineers exhibition aims to encourage an interest in STEM subjects in both children and adults. 

London’s Transport At War

Learn how London’s transport and transport based architecture played a role in the Second and First World Wars. You’ll learn about how the London Underground tunnels moonlit as bomb shelters during the Blitz and how London’s transport system played an integral support and design role in both wars.

London By Design

Science isn’t the only core subject that helped develop London’s transport system into what it is today – art played a key role too. Explore how branding, poster design and graphic art all helped establish the character and tone of London’s public transport system in this gallery of vintage posters and replicas from the “golden age” of London transport design.

The Formation Of London Transport

This exhibition explores the way that the London Transport company that we know and use today was formed. Exploring the methods of corporate partnership and cooperation between various independent train runners, this exhibition is less focused on the engineering side of London’s public transport, but on the business strategies used.

Digging Deeper

Digging Deeper is an exhibition exploring how the London Underground tube lines were constructed in the 1870s. Exploring the decade of turmoil and chaos, the exhibition also showcases how the inventions of one James Henry Greathead helped to pave – or in this case tunnel – their way into the modern world.

Growth Of London

The Growth of London exhibition explores how the city’s population boom in the 19th century led to technological innovations in street planning, transport and many more aspects of life in the English capital.

World’s First Underground

The World’s First Underground continues the story of London’s architectural development by exploring how increased need for railways in London led to a lack of space, and how the London Underground proved to be an effective answer to the question of comfort in London. In this exhibition, visitors can see one of the only remaining steam trains that were first used on the London Underground’s infant Metropolitan Line.

Hidden London – The Exhibition

This one of a kind exhibition shows a side of the city that many have never seen before. Including archive footage, recreations of train stations and even artefacts from the bomb shelters of Winston Churchill himself, this unprecedented exhibit is a must those wanting to learn more about the hidden depths of a forgotten side of the city.

For engineering buffs and car-lovers, there’s nothing quite like the London Transport Museum. From famous London vehicles to transport from iconic London films, guests of London West End deals shouldn’t miss this sleek design and engineering wonderland.

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