Discover the Museum of Brands: A Journey Through British Consumer Culture

museum of brands

Nestled in the heart of Notting Hill, not far from the renowned Portobello Road, lies a hidden gem that attracts nostalgic Britons and students from across Europe and the world. The Museum of Brands, Packaging and Advertising offers a unique historical overview of the evolution of brands, logos, packaging, and advertising of products in the UK market, from the Victorian era to the present day. You can buy tickets online here

A Passionate Collection

The museum houses approximately 12,000 items, meticulously collected over more than half a century by Mr Robert Opie, whose extraordinary passion has created this curious and particular collection. The array of items provides a powerful emotional experience, not just for British visitors who can reminisce and literally see the memories of bygone years, but also for international visitors, as it features globally recognised and marketed products.

Educational and Instructive Experience

For those studying or working in the fields of Marketing, Graphic Design, or Advertising, the Museum of Brands offers an exceptional educational experience. The museum is structured like a time gallery, where visitors can observe the evolution of brands and packaging, toys, and household appliances from decade to decade, starting from the Victorian age and moving towards modern times. Here, one might see a Rimmel product from 1860 or a radio from the 1960s, all presented in a fascinating socio-historical panorama.

The Time Tunnel

The heart of the museum is the Time Tunnel, a permanent exhibit that takes visitors on a chronological journey through British consumer culture. This meticulously curated walk-through exhibit showcases everyday items such as packaging, toys, magazines, technology, and household goods, all displayed in chronological order. The Time Tunnel vividly illustrates how packaging, advertising, and everyday items have evolved over the years, reflecting the social and cultural shifts of British society.

The Brand Hall of Fame

One of the museum’s standout exhibits is the Brand Hall of Fame, which pays homage to iconic British brands that have stood the test of time. From Coca-Cola to Cadbury, visitors can see how these brands have shaped British consumer culture. This exhibit highlights the enduring appeal and cultural significance of these brands, making it a must-see for anyone interested in the history of branding.

Temporary Exhibitions

In addition to its permanent exhibits, the museum also hosts a variety of temporary exhibitions throughout the year. These exhibitions explore different aspects of consumer culture, from the history of advertising to the design of packaging. Each temporary exhibition offers a fresh perspective and adds to the overall richness of the museum experience.

The Secret Garden

A visit to the Museum of Brands would not be complete without spending some time in the Secret Garden. This hidden gem, located at the back of the museum, provides a tranquil escape where visitors can relax and reflect after their tour. The garden is a lovely spot to unwind and enjoy the peaceful surroundings.

The Gift Shop and Coffee Shop

The visit concludes in the museum’s gift shop, where visitors can purchase reproductions of vintage items and other interesting souvenirs. The gift shop offers a wide range of products, from nostalgic memorabilia to unique gifts that capture the essence of the museum’s collection. Additionally, there is a delightful coffee shop within the museum, where visitors can enjoy a cup of coffee or tea while watching old British TV adverts, surrounded by vintage televisions.

Visitor Information

The Museum of Brands is conveniently located at 111–117 Lancaster Rd., Notting Hill, London W11 1QT. Established in 2002 as a registered charity, the museum has become a popular destination for those interested in the history of British consumer culture.

The museum is open daily, offering visitors ample opportunity to explore its extensive collection and enjoy the unique exhibits. Tickets can be purchased at the museum or online, with discounts available for students, seniors, and groups.

Plan Your Visit

Whether you are a marketing professional, a student of graphic design, or simply someone with a love for history and nostalgia, the Museum of Brands offers an unparalleled experience. From its fascinating Time Tunnel to its charming Secret Garden, the museum provides a comprehensive and engaging look at the evolution of British consumer culture.

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