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The National Museum of Childhood in Bethnal Green
Cambridge Heath Road
London UK E2 9PA
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The National Museum of Childhood in Bethnal Green in the East End of London is a branch of the Victoria and Albert Museum (the "V&A"), which is the United Kingdom's national museum of applied arts.
The museum was founded in 1872 as the "Bethnal Green Museum", reusing a prefabricated building from Albertopolis which was replaced with some early sections of the modern V&A complex. It was used to display a variery of collections at different times, including the works which can now be seen at the Wallace Collection. In the 1920s it began to focus on services for children, and in 1974 the director of the V&A Sir Roy Strong defined it as a specialist museum of childhood.
The museum states that its mission 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.
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