Museum Visiting

We're delighted that you would like to come and see us. The British Optical Association Museum at the College of Optometrists is open to the public most week days, but you do have to make an appointment in advance. Visits are by guided tour. The 'Standard Tour' is free of charge and lasts about 40 minutes, or (depending upon availability), there may be the chance to pay a fee to go on a 'Full Building Tour' which lasts two hours.

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Visiting the British Optical Association Museum

Individual and Family Visits

As an individual or family visitor we will offer you a personalised curator-led tour.

Group Visits

We can accommodate groups of between 8 and 25 people. We'll offer you a tour of the museum and a talk relevant to your group's interest or need. There are two options:


Visits to the museum are by prior appointment only. You cannot simply show up at our door. We operate a semi-automated booking system. You may use the electronic form to request an appointment...but we will contact you separately to confirm the arrangement and/or discuss alternative possibilities. Please do not turn up at the museum unless you have received a firm confirmation of booking for a mutually agreed date and time.

How to get here

The staff of the College of Optometrists want you to enjoy your visit to the British Optical Association Museum and to make things as easy as possible for you during the time you spend with us.


Coronavirus COVID-19 update

**The Museum remains closed to visitors until further notice**

Although it is now legal for UK museums to re-open, the College has still not set a date for re-opening the museum to visitors and researchers. A plan for a phased re-opening will be published on this website as soon as possible. All other museum services (enquiries, acquistions, sales, image-licensing etc.) have continued to operate as normal and the curator is on-site three days a week.

Please read the information relevant to your circumstances (Individual and Family visits or Group visits) before making your appointment. On the appointments page we offer an online form to enquire about booking a visit, however please note that the process is not fully wait to hear back from us before turning up.

We are currently experiencing high demand for visits. We are therefore unable to offer same-day appointments. Please contact us to book your visit a minimum of 24 hours in advance (not including weekends) and be sure to check the list of unavailable dates on our appointments page.