Old Operating Theatre Museum
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Britain's oldest surviving purpose-built operating theatre, the Old Operating Theatre Museum is situated in a herb garret in the roof of St Thomas's Church. Built in 1822 for poor women, the theatre has been restored with original furniture and equipment, including a nineteenth-century operating table, surgical instruments and pathological specimens. Visitors enter via a vertiginous wooden staircase to view a pre-anaesthetic operating theatre with tiered viewing seats for students; sanitised reenactments are sometimes held – just as gruesome as the operating tools that look like torture implements. Temporary exhibitions also take place, which often combine art with explorations of pathology.
We offer regularly scheduled talks, walks, demonstrations, film nights, family activity workshops, as well as special events and performances.
Please see our website for full information.