Archive Category:
In the Community
The remains of Surrey Lodge following a V2 explosion in 1945

The remains of Surrey Lodge, an apartment building destroyed by a V2 rocket on 4 January 1945. The photograph was apparently taken on the following day and graphically shows how a 5 storey building was reduced to rubble. Image courtesy of Lambeth Archives.

Barely 150 metres from IWM London today is the site of the most destructive explosion in Lambeth during the Second World War, which killed 43 people.  Just before 8.30pm on the night of Thursday 4 January 1945 a huge explosion destroyed an apartment building, Surrey Lodge, on the corner of Kennington Road and Lambeth Road. The old Lambeth Baths and a chapel on the opposite side of Lambeth Road were also severely damaged.  The blast also extensively damaged the northern and western sides of the Imperial War Museum as well as many surrounding buildings.

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Visitors at IWM London, October 2012

There is still a lot to see here at IWM London!  Work is now underway to transform the museum in time for the centenary of the First World War in 2014, and you will see some changes in action when you visit.

The visitor services team are here to ensure that you get the most out of your time at the museum. Some of our galleries have now closed, and we are here to direct you to the highlights of the five floors of museum galleries that are still open.

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IWM Youth Panel

The Youth Panel’s first meeting of the autumn term saw some new faces and some exciting new projects. To begin the day, we met Luke from the Digital Media department, who told us about a collaboration that IWM is working on with a leading global digital archive. This initiative, kicking off with workshops this month, will explore how crowdsourcing can help IWM learn more about its collections. This is one of a number of projects in which Youth Panel members will take on an important advisory role.

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PM David Cameron with IWM Young Reporters

PM David Cameron was interviewed by IWM Young Reporters from Archbishop Sumner School today following the announcement of the UK’s plans to mark the First World War Centenary.

Today, five IWM Young Reporters met Prime Minister David Cameron at IWM London.

The IWM Young Reporters are from two local primary schools, Archbishop Sumner School and Oasis Academy Johanna in south London. These Year 5 students are honing their reporting and investigative journalism skills so that they can report back to their communities and the wider public on all the changes that are going on at IWM London in the run-up to the First World War Centenary in 2014.

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As the video above says: ‘Such size might have awed and stupefied. But the call today is for mobility and speed.’

Keep your eyes peeled today if you’re in London or near Duxford, Cambridgeshire. The first of our large exhibits will be making its way through London to IWM Duxford on a street near you.

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Members of IWM Youth Panel

Hi, we’re Claudia, Josiah, Zipporah, Ruben and Elana and we’re part of the new IWM youth panel.

We are helping the museum relate to other teenagers. So far we have visited some art archives as well as film archives which have collections from the First and Second World Wars. We also filmed in both locations, giving a brief documentary on our experiences. These can be viewed on our Facebook page.

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A fete in London, 1943. © IWM (D 14677)

Our three Youth Panel taster sessions for local youth at IWM London were a big hit. We were really pleased to meet young people who are interested in making a difference at IWM. We’re buzzing and can’t wait for the next stage in the journey.

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Members of the local community gather at IWM London

Members of the local community met with us last week to discuss the latest developments in the transformation of IWM London

Last Wednesday, we held an open evening for the local community, one in our ongoing series of community events. People from the local area came in to meet the team and discuss the latest developments in our plans to transform IWM London.

Thank you to everyone who joined us!

Some interesting questions were raised over the course of the evening. For those of you who were unable to attend (perhaps due to a certain sideburn-sporting cyclist winning gold medals), here are some highlights from the Q&A:

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