The mission of the museum is "To enable everyone, especially the young, to explore and enjoy the designed world, in particular objects made for and made by children." It has extensive collections of toys, childhood equipment and costumes, and stages a programme of temporary exhibitions.
This museum is a part of the Victoria And Albert Museum in Kensington.
As you walk into the musuem, you are greeted with this huge arch made of chairs. In Victorian Britain, unusual arches made from local products were often constructed to mark special occassions.
This installation in the museum takes inspiration from the first chair arch constructed in 1877 to celebrate Queen Victoris visit to High Wycombe.
The Museum's permanent displays are arranged into three main galleries. Moving Toys, Creativity and Childhood.
These toys use Spring power to move. When you stretch or compress a spring, the energy used is stored int he spring coil. When the spring is let go, the energy is released into movement. The spring bounces in and out until the energy has run out as in jack in the box.
This is Pretty Miss Emma (designed in 1977)
If you lift her left arm she walks. Lift her right arm and she talks. This was a prototype maje by Palitoy in 1977 to assess whether or not she would be a popular toy. She was!
Cowgirl and Horse - 1960 to 1970
This toy is called the Gigante Gallopa or galloping giant. Winding it up makes the horse's body open and back legs kick, causing it to move along on its wheels. Made in Italy by Quercetti
Russian Bear, 1970-1980
Winding up this clockwork bear makes it play music on its balalaika. This stringed instrument is one of the most famous in Russia.
Made in Russia
Popeye was a popular cartoon character with his girlfriend Olive Oyl and rival Bluto. This is an early example of celluloid and metal clockwork toy made in USA
A Charlie Chaplin clockwork toy made in Germany in 1930-1940
Monkey musicians - 1870-1880
Turning the handle makes the musicians move and the organ play eight different tunes. Exclusive shops and department stores sold such luxury toys. Probably made in France
Bebe Premier Pas - 1864
This doll was advertised as the first step doll. It cries 'mama' as it glides along on its wheels. The dolls voice was made using bellows and pipes. Made in France
The Royal Wedding Charger, 1981
This is a souvenir rocking horse of the wedding of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer. It was made in England by artist Maggie W for Heals department store in London
Sicilican Knight - 1970
The Pupi Siciliani marionette is traditionally a wooden pupper dressed in armour unique to the island of Sicily. This example was probably sold as a tourist souvenir
The most famous Indian Puppets come from Rajasthan. The puppets are usually large colourfull marionettes controlled by very few strings, sometimes by only one attached to the puppets head.
Traditional Burmese puppets - 1920-1930
The cast includes a prince and a princess, a white horse signifying the creation of the world and an elephant.
The Teddy bear gets its name feom Theodore 'Teddy' Roosevelt, President of the USA from 1901 to 1909. He refused to shoot a captured bear cub in 1902. When the craze for soft toy bears took off in 1906 they became known as teddy bears.
Schuco Yes/No teddy bears 1930-1940
These bears nod or shake their heads when you move their small tail.
This house was made for Mrs Bryant as a miniature record of her own home.
The small figures are the Strong Man, the Educated Man, the Rich Man, the Poor Man and the Silly Man, and the Naive Man.
Made in England by Sam Smith in 1973
A Butchers Shop
Care Bears 1980-1990
The plush soft toys ar ecalled Birthday, tenderheart and Funshine bears. Made by Kenner.
The Walking Doll - 1963 - Made in England
The Alice in Wonderland Chess Set
Worzel Gummidge and Aunt Sally - 1980
These long rag dolls were made in England by Tussell Croft. Teh characters are a scarecrow and Aunt Sally who only come alive when no adults are around
Dream Toys 2009
Sylvian Families were created in 1985 in Japan and quickly became popular all over the world. The term sylvian means of the forest. The families are all woodland or forest creatures
Newborn baby boy and girl dolls - 1995
Dolls from the Dan Dolls range made in Denmark by DHP.These dolls look so realistic.
Russian Nesting Dolls 1994
These were made in Russia by EK Latisheva.
Group of Trolls 1960
Trolls are spiteful creatures from the folk tales of Scandinavia but collecting these ones by Dam Toys of Denamrk became a real craze
Bridal Doll 1880
An elaborately dressed bridal doll probably made in France
Beauty and her trunk of possessions 1875
This doll was owned by Queen Amelia of Portugal as a child
Dolls based on characters from 'A School for Scandal' - 1920
Hino Matsuri - Japanese Girls Festival 1991
Made in Japan by Shimazu Co
And who doesnt know Barbie and Ken ??
Blythe - 1972
Blythe was only made for one year. If you pull the cord on her back her eyes change color five times.
Tressy was launched in 1964 and made in Hong Kong. these three dolls came with mix and match fashion wear. Tresys hair grows by turning a special key in her back
And heres the Batman series
Sweeney Todd puppets 1938-1945
Marionettes made in England by JD Bivkerdike. The characters of Sweeney Todd,
V&A Museum of Childhood
Cambridge Heath Road
London E2 9PA
Tel: +44 (0)20 8983 5200
Fax: +44 (0)20 8983 5225