221b Baker Street
London, NW1 6XE
Tube: Baker Street
Baker Street today does not have much of the mystery of the fog-shrouded streets of Victorian London. However, in one building, the Sherlock Holmes Museum, marked as 221B Baker Street, you can recapture some of the excitement of the great detectives adventures in the late nineteenth century capital.
Perhaps the most famous fictional detective of all time, Sherlock Holmes remains an icon to many around the world, who thrill to his exploits. Even 120 years after the first short stories appeared major feature films are being made, and a high-profile BBC1 television series is being recorded. Whatever the appeal of the deerstalker-clad hero, it is clear that he will be entertaining audiences for quite some time to come.
Despite the difficulties of creating a museum to commemorate a fictional character, the Sherlock Holmes Museum does its best to recreate the atmosphere of the stories, and to stay true to the details mentioned therein: the tobacco kept in a slipper, period furnishings. The authors daughter, Dame Jean Conan Doyle, did object to the creation of the museum, as she felt that it might confuse people further as to whether or not Sherlock Holmes actually existed, and detract from the fame of her father, who had, after all, created the character.
The museum consists of a number of rooms, dressed as they were described in Conan Doyles stories. You can see the study Holmes and Watson shared, and sit in their chairs, and see some of the great detectives possessions, or reasonable facsimiles thereof. There is also a second floor bedroom decorated as if it had been inhabited by Dr Watson, with so-called memorabilia from the cases described in the stories.
On the third floor there is a wax museum with models from the stories, and above in the attic there is a lumber room. A guide dressed as Mrs Hudson, Holmes and Watsons housekeeper, will show you around the museum. There is also, of course, a souvenir shop for any Sherlock Holmes memorabilia that you might need.
The museum is just a short walk from Baker Street tube station. If you come out of the tube station and take a hard right, you will find the museum just up Baker Street, on your left. Baker Street is easily reached by buses, and can even be walked in less than half an hour from the West End.
The museum tries hard to generate both excitement and exhibits, but the fact that it is a museum dedicated to someone who never existed somewhat hampers its creation of full and informative exhibits. This even extends to their trying to suggest that the actual Dr Watson who lived next door in the 1890s, and was a manufacturer of artificial teeth, was somehow connected to the Dr Watson of the stories.
If you want to see the site Conan Doyle had in mind when he wrote the stories, or if you just want to drink in some of the atmosphere of Victorian London, or if you are a Holmes-fanatic, the Sherlock Holmes Museum may be for you. However, with a lack of exhibits and information, and depending more on an evocation of atmosphere, some might find it a little less than good value for money.
|HOTEL / APARTMENT||POSTCODE||MILES||STAR||19 Aug||20 Aug||21 Aug||22 Aug||23 Aug||24 Aug||25 Aug||26 Aug|
|Baker Street Station||1||Hammersmith & City - Metropolitan - Bakerloo - Circle line - Jubilee||0.19 miles|
|Marylebone Station||1||Bakerloo||0.34 miles|
|Regents Park Station||1||Bakerloo||0.79 miles|
|Edgware Road Station||1||Hammersmith & City - District - Circle line - Bakerloo||0.93 miles|
|Great Portland Street Station||1||Metropolitan - Circle line - Hammersmith & City||0.95 miles|
|London Marylebone Station||0.34 miles|
|London Paddington Station||1.52 miles|
|London Euston Station||1.74 miles|
|South Hampstead Station||2.35 miles|
|London St Pancras Station||2.39 miles|