Barts Pathology Museum

The beautiful Grade II listed Pathology Museum at St Bartholomew’s Hospital houses over 5,000 medical specimens. It spans three mezzanine levels and includes pathological pots relating to all areas of anatomy and physiology, including the skull of John Bellingham - assassin of Prime Minister Spencer Perceval.

The museum is listed in the book London: Hidden Interiors by Philip Davies and has appeared on numerous documentaries, including Ian Hislop’s Stiff Upper Lip and Time Team with Tony Robinson. It is leased by Queen Mary, University of London and is therefore run independently from the hospital.

Designed by the architect Edward I’Anson, the museum was opened in 1879 by the future Edward VII and proved a valuable resource for medical students. It gradually fell into disuse following the opening of a new pathology department in 1909 and the building of clinical skills teaching rooms in the 1970s.

Both the building itself and the specimens it contains hold fascinating histories. St Bartholomew’s Hospital, for instance, is the place Sir Arthur Conan Doyle chose for Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson to have their first meeting. The Sherlock Holmes Society recently held a Holmes film screening at the Pathology Museum. A plaque donated by the ‘Baker Street Irregulars’ in the 1950s commemorating the fictional first meeting was located in the museum’s office, but is now held in the St Bartholomew’s Hospital Museum.

Barts Pathology Museum is undergoing an extensive period of conservation, so is only open to the public during special events.
Most events are free or incur a very nominal charge which includes refreshments such as wine and light snacks (booking is required.)

Exhibitions and events

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Educational programs

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