Museum of Immigration and Diversity
Open just a few days per year, this evocative museum based in the east of London, explores experiences of multicultural refugees
Based in a battered, unaltered-18th-century house, this multicultural museum celebrates diversity and is the first of its kind in Europe. From Huguenot silk weavers' (whose garrets can still be glimpsed on the top floor) to 19th-century Jewish settlers from Eastern Europe who built their own synagogue in the garden, the house is a witness to the waves of immigrants who have made their home in this part of London.
A site specific exhibition 'Suitcases and Sanctuary' explores the continuing history of immigration to Spitalfields to the present day, through the eyes of children living in the area today. The fragile condition of the house means that the museum can currently only open a few days a year.
Despite the limited opening hours, a shortage of funding and the fact that it is run by volunteers, thousands of people every year visit 19 Princelet Street — an indication of the resounding relevance and popularity of this 'museum of conscience'.