The Met Police “Heritage Centre”

A few weeks ago, I had an email from the Met Police’s mailing list letting me know they had opened up a new heritage centre, which sounded quite interesting.

Alas, only open Mon-Fri, and closing at 4pm meant it has taken a few weeks before I could get along to have a look.

It is not the infamous “black museum” that is housed within Scotland Yard and is not open to the public, ever – although a recent opportunity for a visit due to a charity auction for the police’s benevolent fund got my heart beating, until the auction was suddenly cancelled.

Damn.

That disappointment aside, the press blurb looked interesting enough for me to wander along. Informed that the museum is “opposite West Brompton tube station”, I was a bit wary as I know that opposite the station is the Earl’s Court Exhibition Centre. Surely they haven’t taken over that building?

Nope, and the museum is not by any stretch of the imagination “opposite” the station – more like about 200 yards to the left of the station (map link).

Having found the modern looking building, it is not a bad little museum. It was laid out the way I like museums to be done – with glass cases and exhibits on shelves – and a notable lack of garish plastic or “interactive stuff”. A video playing clips designed to encourage you to join the Special Constables is a bit annoying, but not too bad.

A genial chap popped his head round a corner to ask if I wanted any help, and was happy to leave me to browse around alone.

However, it is tiny! I doubt I was in there for more than 15 minutes all told.

Worth a detour if you are in the Earl’s Court area – but not really not worth a dedicated trip to the area for a visit.

There is a leaflet on the table by the visitor signing book for a Friends Association for the archive, and they do say one of their aims one day is to open a dedicated museum. May that day swiftly arrive.

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