We performed our usual shopping run this morning and returned home to put away the spoils.
The clock tower in reflected light
After lunch, we set out again, starting our journey at the clock tower where we boarded a 394 single-deck bus. This threads its way along a complicated route, terminating at Homerton Hospital. We, however, did not travel quite that far.
Almshouses now Museum of the Home
We came here, to this impressive three-wing set of almshouses founded in the early 18th century as a bequest of the will of Sir Robert Jeffrye. Today, the building is part of a complex constituting the Museum of the Home. It was until fairly recently called the Jeffrye Museum but then the founder’s reputation suffered an eclipse owing to his connections with slavery. His name was removed from the museum’s name though his statue, with an inscription, still stands above the main entrance.
We have visited this museum many times but this was the first visit since the complex was enlarged and remodelled. Admission is free but thanks to Covid, you need to book a time for your visit. Our time was 3 pm.
Take a seat
I appreciated the old museum for its display of room settings from Tudor times to the modern day. They are still present but the enlarged museum displays much more than it used to with examples of the furniture and other contents of the home through the ages.
As well as a broad range of objects found in the home, there were videos to watch and information boards to read. I, though, was impatient to see my favourites, the room settings. I will show you just a few of these, so as not to bore you.
A hall of 1630
A parlour of 1695
A parlour of 1790
A parlour of 1870
Loft style apartment of 1998
In the centre of the main wing, accessed through the main door, lies the chapel. It was a condition of being admitted as an occupant of an almshouse, that one attended Sunday services in the chapel.
As you might expect, there is a cafe attached to the museum. You have to leave the museum building and walk to what was once an independent pub but has been acquired by the museum and converted into its cafe.
Tea and lemon drizzle cake
We ordered tea and lemon drizzle cake for two. I was rather surprised at the price: more expensive than our cooked lunch at Cafe Sizzle yesterday. Still, I suppose that compensates for the free admission.
A park with ancient trees
In front of the almshouses, separating them from the road, is a broad garden or park with ancient trees. No doubt the occupants could sit out here on warm days without being troubled by the traffic on the road.
Moon over the museum
Photo by Tigger
The stop for the 394 bus to take us home stands conveniently in front of the museum. We had a 10-minute wait for the bus during which time Tigger photographed an almost full moon over the roof of the almshouses.
The bus duly arrived and carried us along its tortuous backstreet route back to the Angel and home. It was good to see the museum again, especially the room settings which always fascinate me and are for me the main attraction.