Benjamin Franklin House

Benjamin Franklin House
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In the heart of London, is Benjamin Franklin House, the world's only remaining Franklin home. For nearly sixteen years between 1757 and 1775, Dr Benjamin Franklin – scientist, diplomat, philosopher, inventor, Founding Father of the United States and more – lived behind its doors. Built circa 1730, it is today a dynamic museum and educational facility.

he Historical Experience presents the excitement and uncertainty of Franklin's London years using rooms where so much took place as staging for a drama that seamlessly integrates live performance, cutting edge lighting, sound and visual projection. 

 The Student Science Centre focuses on Franklin's London science - from lightning rods to hydrodynamics, allowing school children to satifsy their historical and scientific curiosity, free of charge. Outreach, including Ben's Travelling Suitcase, brings our educational activities into schools and the community.

The top floor Robert H. Smith Scholarship Centre is a focal point in Europe for Franklin and the myriad subjects with which he is associated, featuring a full set of the Papers of Benjamin Franklin, as catalogued by Yale University, as well as an active internship programme, and nearly 40 public events per year.

W hile lodging at 36 Craven Street, Franklin's main occupation was mediating unrest between Britain and America, but he also served as Deputy Postmaster for the Colonies; pursued his love of science (exploring bifocal spectacles, the energy-saving Franklin stove); explored health (inoculation, air baths, cures for the common cold); music (inventing the delightful glass armonica for which Mozart, Bach and Beethoven composed) and letters (articles, epitaphs, and his witty Craven Street Gazette), all while forging a hearty social life and close friendships with leading figures of the day.

 


L atest Reviews

‘Absolutely blown away’ – 17 April

‘Interactive and sucked me in to the story!’ – 10 April

First Class’ – 9 April

Fantastic experience. Very well done and completely unexpected’ – 7 April

‘Great visit, cool history’ – 7 April

‘Engrossing’ – 2 April

‘Fabulous portrait of the life of B.Franklin in 18th C London’ – 30 March

‘Impressive’ – 30 March

‘Very engaging, informative & fascinating. A hidden gem!’ 28 March

Read more reviews


Education

Benjamin Franklin House provides free, active cross-curricular learning activities for primary and secondary school groups.  Visits to see our children’s Historical Experience and Student Science Centre take place on Tuesdays.  We also have extensive in-school outreach other days of the week, along with special events during the year including an annual Science Day, and family programmes in summer and school holidays. Learn more!

Right: painting by Shreya M, 12 years old, Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan's Public School

 
Book Tickets Online
Purchase Benjamin Franklin items

Opening Hours

Monday: Architectural tours run at 12 noon, 1pm, 2pm, 3.15pm and 4.15pm

Tuesday: Schools day (advance booking required)

Wednesday–Sunday: Historical Experience shows run at 12 noon, 1pm, 2pm, 3.15pm and 4.15pm (booking is recommended)

Our Box Office (Phone: +44 (0) 207 925 1405) is open 10.30am-5pm everyday, except Tuesdays. Read more about planning your visit to Benjamin Franklin House here.  Please contact the box office to book concessionary or special offer tickets.

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Walking Tours

Join us for our newest public offering, walking tours!

Close by his only surviving home at 36 Craven Street are places of national and historic importance such as the Palace of Westminster, Downing Street, Westminster Abbey, and the Royal Society of Arts.  But what are the Franklin connections?

Starting from Benjamin Franklin House, each Wednesday at 10:30am (April – November inclusive), participants can discover them in our new fun and informative walking tour.

Pre-booking is advised.

To book, call +44 (0) 207 839 2006 or email info@benjaminfranklinhouse.org

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A New Website for Benjamin Franklin - Have Your Say

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Upcoming Events

Family Day: Franklin In Frame

Tuesday 31 May, 11am

Ben Franklin, 18th century scientist, inventor, and US Founding Father, was fascinated by the natural world and it’s exploration. He investigated lightning and the Gulf Stream. He was intrigued by the Aurora Borealis and attended the first manned flight of the Montgolfier Brothers’ hot air balloon in 1783. This half-term, help bring these historic scenes to life by creating mixed-media art, to be displayed at Benjamin Franklin House for a short-term exhibition before being returned to their creators! Suitable for 5-11 year olds.

 Tickets: Free. Advanced booking is recommended as capacity is limited. To book, visit www.BFHFranklinInFrame.eventbrite.com


Franklin’s Singing Bowls: An Evening with the Glass Armonica

Monday 20 June, 6.30pm

In 1762, Franklin premiered his new musical invention, the glass armonica which had been devised a year earlier at 36 Craven Street. Mallory Horrill, Front of House and Marketing Supervisor, will demonstrate how ethereal sounds are produced from rotating glass bowls which have inspired compositions by Mozart, Beethoven, (JC) Bach, and more recently, rock musicians like Jarvis Cocker and Damian Albarn.

5/3.50 for Friends and Concessions. Bookings can be made via our Box Office +442078392006


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Sir Harry Kroto, 1939-2016

We were saddened this week to learn of the passing of Sir Harry Kroto, Nobel Prize-winning chemist and friend to Benjamin Franklin House. Sir Harry memorably spoke at our annual Symposium in 2007 on science in the 21st century -  what science is, how people, the media, politicians and others perceive science and scientists, and some of the problems non-scientists have in understanding science, engineering and technology.

Read the article on The Guardian's website

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Historical ExperienceStudent Study CentreScholarship Centre

 
36 Craven St London, WC2N 5NF 0207 839 2006 Benjamin Franklin House UK Registered Charity no 276066
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