Harpenden Evening Web Page

Visit Report

Visit to Museum of Brands, Packaging and Advertising & Leighton House

Wednesday 6th March 2019

This is a very pleasant, compact museum in Notting Hill featuring over 12,000 original items from the Robert Opie Collection - everyday items such as packaging, posters, toys and games. The morning started with an introductory talk by a volunteer and we were then free to wander round indulging in a great deal of nostalgia as we went. There certainly was a lot to see. The museum has a 'time tunnel' with all the objects set out in chronological order along a clear and easy-to-follow route. We had lunch in the cafe, which leads (in warmer weather) onto a garden area.

After lunch we went by coach to Leighton House in Holland Park, the former home and studio of Victorian artist, Frederick Leighton. Here we had a guided tour of the house which Frederick Leighton had commissioned architect George Aicheson to build. The first part of the house was completed in 1864 and it was extended at various times over the next 30 years. One of the main features is Leighton's studio on the first floor and another is the two-storey Arab hall which was added in 1877-79 to house Leighton's collection of tiles which he had accumulated during visits to the Middle East. The museum also has on permanent display, works of art by Pre-Raphaelites, John Everett Millais, Edward Burne Jones and George Frederick Watts as well as 81 paintings by Leighton himself. It was an attractive and interesting place to visit and we had a very well-informed guide.

Mike Bird