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The National Science and Media Museum is now open. Please book free museum admission or cinema tickets online in advance.

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Access to our collection

Everyone is welcome to make an appointment to visit Insight, our research centre, and discover our collection.

At Insight: Collections and Research Centre, you can explore objects from our collection and make use of our extensive research library. See prints by some of the world’s greatest photographers; examine apparatus that illuminates the history and development of sound and vision technologies; and access many specialist publications and journals. Read about some of the major highlights of our collection below.

In our collection

Booking a visit

It’s free to visit Insight, but you must book your visit in advance.

To book, please email the curatorial team to discuss your research plans at research@scienceandmediamuseum.org.uk. Research slots will normally be released a month in advance, and your booking must be made at least 14 days before the date you would like to visit.

If you can’t visit, we offer virtual collection access via any videoconferencing platform. Please get in touch via research@scienceandmediamuseum.org.uk for further details and to discuss your needs.

Available dates and times

  • 20–22 April 2022
  • 18–20 May 2022
  • 22–24 June 2022
  • 20–22 July 2022
  • 10–12 August 2022
  • 21–23 September 2022

Appointments are available 10.00–16.30 on the above dates, with a closure for lunch at 12.30–13.30.

Important information about booking

When you contact us, please let us know what you want to see; if this is not possible, our team will contact you for more details once your booking is complete.

Once we have confirmed your plans with you, we will provide a link to a booking page which will issue you with a ticket for the day of your visit.

To comply with Covid-19 guidance, four researcher places are available to book per day. If you need to be accompanied by someone, let us know and our team can provide advice about booking two desks together.

When you visit

Visits to Insight are hosted in the Gandolfi Room, a purpose-built reading room with reader tables, power sockets and free WiFi.

Full details about the measures we have put in place to keep everyone safe while visiting the museum can be found in our reopening FAQ. This includes wearing a face covering during your visit, unless you have an exemption.

Please try to limit the number of personal items you bring into Insight. There is a secure space to safely leave your belongings; you’re welcome to use your laptop or tablet, phone or camera, notepad and pencil when researching.

On arrival at the museum, please show your ticket and you’ll be directed to Insight, where a member of our curatorial team will be there to welcome you. The curatorial team can help with any queries you have in advance about visiting; please contact us at research@scienceandmediamuseum.org.uk .

Research online

Our collection⁠—and the inspirational stories it contains⁠—is also open to you online. You can find further information about the objects, archives and library we care for via Collection Online, the archive catalogue, the Science Museum library catalogue and the National Railway Museum library catalogue.

We offer a free enquiry service to help you find out more about the items in the Science Museum Group Collection. Please contact us via research@scienceandmediamuseum.org.uk. We would normally aim to respond to enquiries within 20 working days; however, responses may take longer at the moment due to Covid-19.

Part of the Science Museum Group