The Postal Heritage Trust is a charity responsible for the archive and museum collections of Royal Mail, which contain records dating from 1636 and include reports, maps, posters and photos, plus stamps and objects documenting the development of the Post Office.
The museum has five zones exploring 500 hundred years of the postal world’s most significant events, with interactive exhibits, sculptures and sheets of rare stamps. Ogle at a gold Olympic post box, decipher Morse code at a 1930s writing bureau, taken on the role of a Mail Coach guard in an interactive game and watch films by the General Post Office’s own film unit including ‘Night Mail’ with words by W H Auden and music from Benjamin Britten.
Tickets will also give access to the newly opened and revamped Mail Rail, a clandestine set of tunnels originally opened on 1927 and used to shuttle post around London for almost 80 years before its closure in 2013.
|Venue name:||The Postal Museum and Mail Rail||Contact:|
|Opening hours:||10am to 5pm|
|Transport:||Tube: Farringdon/Chancery Lane|
|Price:||Postal Museum only: £11, £9 concessions, free children. Museum and Mail Rail: £17.05, £15.40 concessions, £10.45 children|
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The highlight of the Postal Museum is definitely the Mail Rail. I actually wanted it to be longer. They've don a brilliant job in making film work along the ride to both inform and entertain in a way that suits both adults and children. The only downside to the Mai Rail is that the audio is hard to hear at times due to the noise from the rail itself. Otherwise, it's very well curated. After the ride you come to a very interactive part of the museum which explains more about the working life on the MailRail right up until its last running day in 2003. It's truly fascinating.
The Postal Museum itself is very well orchestrated and a decent size to give good information in a fun way, without bombarding you with details. It is very focused on educating children though, and some parts seemed less relevant for adults. But overall a very well balanced exhibition of both past and present day Royal Mail.
The museum also hosts a very nice cafe, courtyard and bike storage area (there's nowhere to park your bike outside otherwise).