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British Optical Association Museum is one of the oldest museums of its genre in the world. Inaugurated in 1901, the museum has almost 16,000 collectibles on display which describes the history of Ophthalmology. They have a huge collection of visual aids, spectacles, rare catalogs and other equipment's used in the field of optics. The museum is managed by the British Optical Association.
The National Gallery is a magnificent Georgian edifice on the northern side of Trafalgar Square that houses a massive collection of Western European art. Started in 1838, you can find the works of master Leonardo Da Vinci in the Sainsbury wing of the gallery, alongside Botticelli and Bellini. The west wing contains works by Titian, Michelangelo and Raphael, the north wing contains works by Rubens, Rembrandt and Caravaggio, and the east wing contains works by Seurat, Canaletto, Degas and Monet. A portable audio guide is available in six different languages.
Dedicated to visual arts, the Mall Galleries in London aims to provide a platform to local and emerging artists as well as showcase works of renowned artists. The venue consists of three galleries, a bookshop and a cafe and is also the center of the Federation of British Artists, a national charity. The leading art societies that form the FBA host their annual exhibition at the Mall Galleries.
Built in the early 1700s and retaining most of its original characteristics, this beautifully restored Georgian building is the only surviving residence of Benjamin Franklin. Serving as his home during the 16 years he spent in London as a mediator, it is essentially the first U.S. embassy. Designed to be a historical experience, the Benjamin Franklin house is now a museum and educational institution. State of the art lighting and projection technology recreate the fascinating life and discoveries of this politician, inventor, scientist, and philosopher, while the Student Science Centre offers a hands on look at Franklin's London based discoveries. Opened on Ben's 300th birthday in 2006 and just steps from Trafalgar Square, this is a wonderful variation from traditional museums and well worth the stop.
The National Portrait Gallery houses portraits of eminent personalities in British history from the Tudors to the present day, making it a must for lovers of art. Founded in 1856, the collection on display is among the most comprehensive in the world and no restrictions are placed on the mediums used. There are traditional oil paintings and watercolors, as well as drawings, miniatures, sculptures, silhouettes, caricatures and photographs. Admission is free, but certain exhibitions may be charged.
National Police Memorial commemorates nearly 4000 police officers who died during their duty in the UK. Michael Winner, a film producer, felt the need to set up the Police Memorial Trust as he was deeply moved by the demise of Yvonne Fletcher, a police officer in London's St. James' Square. The trust was set up in 1984 after Winner wrote to The Times suggesting the creation of a memorial for the police force. National Police Memorial is built to the designs of Per Arnoldi and Lord Foster and was unveiled in the year 2005. Its beautiful blue color makes the memorial stand apart on the tree-lined Horse Guards Road.