Hackney Museum

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Hackney Museum brings the world to your doorstep! We are a family friendly community museum exploring the long history of migration and settlement in Hackney, through objects, interactive displays and oral histories. There is always something new to see at Hackney Museum in our two temporary exhibition spaces, with displays changing every four months. We also offer a year-round programme of adult events, family workshops and formal and informal learning.

Venue Type:


Opening hours

Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday 9.30am - 5.30pm
Thursday 9.30am - 8.00pm
Saturday 10.00am - 5.00pm

Closed: Sunday, Monday and Bank Holidays

Admission charges


Hackney Museum's collections are broad. They include objects that relate to the local area's history, such as a Saxon log boat which is 1000 years old. We also collect objects that relate to communities' lives in Hackney, such as a set of Vietnamese painted fingernails. Finally we collect objects that relate to communities' lives in their countries of origin, such as a Nigerian catapult.

Collection details

World Cultures, Toys and Hobbies, Social History, Science and Technology, Religion, Photography, Personalities, Natural Sciences, Music, Medicine, Land Transport, Fine Art, Film and Media, Decorative and Applied Art, Costume and Textiles, Archives, Archaeology

Key artists and exhibits

  • Anglo Saxon logboat, Jewish Cloth badge and anti-semitic newspaper from Nazi Germany, Dennis Morris Photographs, Tom Hunter photographs, Huguenot silverwear, Eel Pie and Mash Shop, Rachel Whiteread photographs, Victorian fire engine, Vietnamese painted finger nails,
Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
Island to Island

Island to Island: Journeys through the Caribbean

  • 3 October 2017 — 13 January 2018 *on now

This exhibition presents a visual journey through the English-speaking Caribbean with stunning photographs taken over the past sixty years.
Through the work of photographer Tim Smith, explore how the region's multicultural history has shaped the distinctive cultures found across the Caribbean today.
This exhibition also shares rare images of everyday life in the 1950s and 1960s, and personal memories from Hackney residents connected to the Caribbean.

Suitable for

  • Any age



Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.
Advance UK workshop

Get Up, Stand Up: Songs from the Caribbean

  • 25 October 2017 1-2:30pm

Join Hackney Museum's resident artists from Advance UK for an afternoon of music, songs and art inspired by the Caribbean. Advance UK supports adults with learning disabilities.

Suitable for

  • Any age
Girl skipping rope

#BlackArtMatters (Island Hoppers)

  • 26 October 2017 2-4pm

Discover the sights, sounds and stories of the Caribbean and create your own posters and flags with storytellers and artists.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly
  • Especially for children
Island to Island


  • 28 October 2017 2-5pm

African and Caribbean people have lived in Hackney for hundreds of years. Join Young Hackney for a museum takeover revealing the poetry, petitions and protests of African and Caribbean young people in the past that have shaped Hackney today.

Suitable for

  • Any age
Barbadian Brownies watch a passing group of cheerleaders at the Holetown Festival.

Race, Place and Photography in Hackney

  • 2 November 2017 6-7:30pm

Come and share your photographs, memories or personal items that you associate with home, arrival and belonging. Together with local artist Ekua McMorris, look at how different communities have shaped Hackney starting with African and Caribbean experiences.

Suitable for

  • 16-17
  • 18+


Free admission, booking essential via Eventbrite



People outside music shop in Dalston

Black British music in Hackney

  • 9 November 2017 6-7:30pm

Music lovers come share your stories, memories or memorabilia of Black British music in Hackney! Help Hackney Museum find out more about the people, places and events that have shaped the sounds of the borough for a special exhibition in October 2018.


Free admission, booking essential via Eventbrite



Woman in St Kitts

Memoir Writing Workshop: Hackney my Hackney

  • 18 November 2017 1-4pm

In this workshop with Andrea Enisuoh, come and explore the unique and untold historical stories of African and Caribbean people in the borough and think about how to share your own story.

Suitable for

  • Any age


Free admission, booking essential via Eventbrite



Resources listed here may include websites, bookable tours and workshops, books, loan boxes and more. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all.

A Resource Pack for Teachers

The pack is aimed at Key Stage 1, 2 and Special Educational Needs (SEN) teachers. It is designed to support a visit to Hackney Museum and contains background information on all the displays. The pack contains an information booklet to guide you through the displays and activities available at the museum, and worksheets, discussion, role-play and photo cards – packed full of good ideas on how to prepare and follow up on your visit.
For a copy of the teachers pack or for information on the free educational workshops designed to compliment the National Curriculum contact the Education Officer on 02083562529.


  • Hackney Museum

How to obtain

Call Hackney Museum's Education Officer on 020 8356 2529 or pick one up from the museum front desk.

Hackney Museum
Technology and Learning Centre
1 Reading Lane
Greater London
E8 1GQ






020 8356 2509

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.