As part of my Tube jaunt to the east, I decided to check out a few of the small museums on my list. Redbridge Museum is the local museum for the town of Redbridge: it opened in 2000 and is located above the library near the town centre.
In common with many local museums, the main collection is displayed in chronological order, looking at the history of the town through the ages. It does this in reverse, beginning with recent history and going back through the centuries via two World Wars and the Industrial Revolution. There are two reconstructed rooms to show what life would have been like in different periods of the town’s history.
What I really liked about the museum was the effort they make to include the community in the displays. A changing display at the entrance explores different significant figures from the town. The current celebrated resident is Fauja Singh, who is (as far as is known) the oldest marathon runner in the world. He ran his first marathon aged 89 and only retired from long-distance running aged 101!
Redbridge Museum is currently hosting a temporary exhibition called Ice Age Ilford, which includes a life-size replica of the skull of a mammoth found in Ilford, as well as several fossilised bones uncovered during the Victorian era. Many of these bones are now cared for by the Natural History Museum and the British Geological Survey, and this is a rare chance to see them in their original home. There is also information about what the area would have looked like over 200,000 years ago, and a little about the Victorians responsible for the fossil discoveries.
Redbridge Museum is a nice little local museum and is well worth visiting if you’re in the area.
Address: 2nd Floor Central Library, Clements Road, Ilford, Essex, IG1 1EA
Opening Hours: 10-5 Tues-Fri, 10-4 Sat