What has Michael Faraday got to do with Frankenstein? And frogs? And why does the sky turn red? The answers to these and other questions (most unrelated to ‘F’ words) are on offer at the Faraday Museum in the basement of the Royal Institution. So it was the perfect location for day one of our staycation in London.
The museum is based around the laboratory of chemist and physicist Michael Faraday. Faraday’s connection to the Royal Institution started when he was a 21-year-old attendee at one of Humphry Davy’s infamous lectures here, and he was to go on to quietly take over the basement and turn it into his lab.
The lack of light made it a perfect place for experiments using light and electricity; Faraday was to conduct experiments here that would change the way we see the world forever.
But it wasn’t just Faraday: iconic scientists such as Humphry Davy and John Tyndall conducted world-shifting work here, too: see the equipment that was used to demonstrate why the sky is blue (and why it turns red), that electricity is a force, and that heat is a form of motion.
Add to that 10 elements that were discovered right here at the Ri, a peephole into Faraday’s original lab, and the first electrical battery, and you’ve got a science nerd’s heaven. Luckily it appeals to the rest of us, too, and it’s completely free for everyone. Pencil in a visit next time you’ve got a day off during the week: you’ll regret it if you miss out.
Opening times: Monday – Friday, 9am-6pm
Nearest Tube: Oxford Circus
More information: Visit the Royal Institution website
You might like…
- 7 quiet places to write in central London
- 21 quiet museums in London that are open on Sundays
- 9 quiet places to explore in Holborn, Temple and Fleet Street