The Vagina Museum in Bethnal Green must vacate its current premises by the end of this week.
That means that the museum — which aims to tackle stigma around vaginas: the word, the topic, and health conditions — is closing down for the time being. The same fate is faced by creative hub Enter The Venue, which the museum shares the space with.
Originally opening in Camden Market in 2019, the museum was forced out when the lease ended in 2021, and found a new home in Bethnal Green, which opened in March 2022.
Now, less than a year after moving into its current premises, and after welcoming 40,000 people through its east London doors, the Vagina Museum is being forced to close again, it announced on Twitter.
Sad news. We’ve received notice to vacate our premises at Bethnal Green by the end of this week. As a property guardianship, we’ve always been aware that we may be asked to leave with very short notice. We’re disappointed that it has come so soon.— Vagina Museum (@vagina_museum) January 30, 2023
The museum has been part of a property guardianship, which allows people or organisations to occupy otherwise empty buildings, usually for a largely reduced rent. The downside is that you can be asked to vacate with very little notice, as has happened here.
If you want to visit the museum premises one last time, you've only got until Wednesday (1 February) to do so. It's open 10am-8pm Monday-Wednesday, with a special final tour of the current space at 7pm on Wednesday.
Will the Vagina Museum reopen elsewhere?
That's the plan, though exactly where or when remains to be seen. The team are actively searching for a new home, and are keen to hear from anyone who has, or knows of, a suitable space. In the meantime, they are fundraising to help them through what could be a tricky few weeks or months.
There's also a sale at the museum's online shop to raise more money, and to reduce the amount of stock the team has to move. Use code 'MOVINGOUT' for 25% off, before 11.59pm on 1 February.
Though it's still only January, this is already the second museum closure in London we've heard of in 2023; Pollocks' Toy Museum in Fitzrovia has also closed its doors.