Everyone’s favourite talking and travelling bear, Paddington, stormed the UK cinema box office just before the start of the festive season – but for lovers of this bear from deepest, darkest Peru, the fun doesn’t stop there. The Museum of London, which is within easy reach of the Strand Palace Hotel, is holding an exhibit called ‘A Bear Called Paddington’, chronicling the journey of the loveable bear from page to silver screen. On until the 4th January, it is a fantastic free activity to enjoy with the entire family this holiday season.
Before checking out the exhibit, take the kids to see the new film, which is showing at a number of London cinemas very near to Strand Palace Hotel. The fun-filled film tells the story of a young bear (voiced by Ben Whishaw) who makes his way to London in search of a new home after his home in the rainforests of Peru is destroyed by an earthquake. Upon arrival in London, Paddington meets the Brown family, who give him a home, but not all is peaceful. As he begins to discover the city, he also has to outrun the evil taxidermist Millicent Clyde (voiced by Nicole Kidman) who wants his rare Peruvian hide.
After seeing the movie, pay a visit to the Museum of London to check out the free exhibit, which celebrates the stowaway bear as he journeys from Peru to London, and the adventures he has along the way. Objects showcased include various replicas of Paddington himself, a copy of the original book by Michael Bond and other objects that chart the well-mannered talking ursine’s journey from book character to screen legend.
Beyond Paddington, the Museum of London offers permanent and rotating exhibits, Permanent collections focus on London’s history through the many centuries, with themes such as ‘London Before London’ about prehistoric times and ‘War, Fire and Plague’ about the Middle Ages, while perhaps the pick of the numerous quirky temporary exhibits include one delving into the mind of the world’s most famous fictional detective, Sherlock Holmes. Running until the 12th April, It has been called ‘wonderfully evocative’ by The Telegraph.
If your kids can’t stop talking about Paddington after seeing the film and visiting the museum, don’t worry – there’s more! Take them on the Paddington Trail, an initiative brought to London by Visit London, NSPCC and STUDIOCANAL. The trail takes in a total of 50 individually-designed Paddington bear statues dotted all throughout the city, including a colourful life-size one designed by Sherlock himself, Benedict Cumberbatch.
Strand Palace is not only a hotel near to the Museum of London – it’s convenient for the Paddington Trail and for a number of London’s best cinemas too. Where better for Paddington fans to base themselves?
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