On our road trip to Leeds for a dance competition we squeezed in a few field trips. The big surprise was the Thackeray medical museum. We planned very last minute and the museum randomly pulled up in a list of local sights. I am glad I clicked on that link because this sleeper attraction was worth every penny.
The first part of our tour was the "Streets of Old Leeds" which I expected to be much like the much loved "Streets of Old Milwaukee" from my childhood museum. Yeah, but no. Truly this was one of the most realistic and disturbing recreations I've ever been through. Unique to this place was the smell. They piped in exceptionally realistic stench which had us a bit gaggy. There was audio too. Wailing animals and chopping sounds at the blood stained slaughter house, moans of the sick, vendors hawking their wares. At several points the little ones jumped or gasped or turned for an exit and Moira and I were half-tempted to do the same. We are glad we pushed through though. It made an impression few book explanations could have. If you are interested there is a virtual tour here. Without smell-avision you will have to take our word for the rest.
There were fabulous displays of vintage medical equipment and medications, complete with explanations of the procedures and how they've evolved. Lots of film footage was available. Just truly fascinating even for kids.
My only gripe came while I was completely engrossed in the maternity section reading the stories and seeing all the apparatus used over the years. The exhibit closed with huge quotes on the displays which led one to the conclusion that "people who love children only have one or two because you could never do enough for more." To which I just reminded children of mine - numbers 5, 8 and 9 - that love multiplies, it does not divide.