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Fan Museum

Museums, Art and design Greenwich
4 out of 5 stars
(6user reviews)

This beautiful museum is dedicated to the history of handheld fans and the craft of fan-making. Housed in a pair of restored Georgian townhouses, it holds more than 3,000 specimens from all over the world, some dating back to the eleventh century.

By: Time Out editors


Venue name: Fan Museum
Address: 12 Crooms Hill
SE10 8ER
Opening hours: Tue-Sat 11am-5pm; Sun noon-5pm
Transport: Rail: Greenwich rail/Cutty Sark DLR
Price: £3-£5
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Average User Rating

4 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:2
  • 4 star:2
  • 3 star:2
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
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A relatively small free museum with an unexpectedly large collection of fans (think all sorts - feather, mother-of-pearl, ivory). You need 30 minutes (at most) to see it, but go ahead and indulge with a very affordable cream tea in the lovely orangery. Just make sure you check with them if the place is not pre-booked, we tried to go on several Sundays and they always had private functions in there.


Charming, small but perfectly formed museum in the heart of Greenwich - perfect to visit to escape the tourist hoards in the area.  Genuinely worth the low price of entry for the Walter Sickert and Paul Gauguin originals reshaped into fans, but there are interesting curios galore with regularly changing special exhibitions.  


A tiny little gem right in the middle of Greenwich, and a perfect stop off between the Maritime Museum and the market. The Fan Museum provides a little calm respite from the busy Sunday crowds and is actually really interesting! 

Great little shop and SUPER staff who are very friendly and know their stuff, and the tea shop is really delightful. 

TIP - book a table in the tea shop in advance. They do London's cheapest afternoon tea, which features just cakes (no savories) and as much tea as you can drink. It's around £6 per person and well worth it... hence it needs to be booked to make sure you get in. The cafe overlooks beautiful gardens, so have a little look in there before you leave too. 

Staff Writertastemaker

Such a little hidden gem and a lovely way to spend an afternoon, especially if there is enough sun to enjoy the gardens and stop for coffees too.

I like going here with a pal for a catch up, there is just enough to look at that you get those all important weekend culture points but not so much its wholly distracting (also, less kids than the average museum)!


I know, I know… This doesn’t sound very exciting. But wait! It’s actually more fun than you think.

It’s in a lovely old house that you’ll discover a multitude of fans (some dating all the way back to the XVIIIth century). It might sound boring but it’s actually quite fun to look at the design old fans used to have. Last time I went I saw one with a mermaid riding a seagull. How cool is that?

You’ll soon learn to enjoy the quirkiness of this little museum. And at only £4 a ticket, it’ll be a shame not to give it a try.

Before you go, don’t forget to have a look at the garden (shaped like a fan) and the orangery that serves afternoon teas. I have never tried the food but the painted walls are so nice and give a bucolic vibe to the place.

The Fan Museum is beautifully placed at the bottom of the park and has a fascinating collection. Do go and have tea in the magically painted garden room... with 'views' across Greenwich... The tea itself was a little disappointing: no sandwiches, and the cakes were not great 'bake off' standard, but the 'event' was just being in this lovely room. I am planning to visit again in the summer - when hopefully I can enjoy another (hopefully upgraded) afternoon tea after a walk in the park...

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