Monday, 6 June 2011

The Pen Room, Birmingham

Because of my camera fail, these photos do so little to portray the amazingness which is Birmingham's Pen Room museum. I love obscure little museums, run by volunteer enthusiasts. The museum tells the history of the fountain pen industry in Birmingham before it was destroyed by the biro.



The best bit, which you can't really see, is that you can make a fountain pen nib using the old machinery on the left hand side of this wall. It took several steps on heavy machinery, and I can't believe they embossed the name and address of the factory on the tiny nibs.

They run calligraphy classes too, on Saturdays, which are £2.5o for 90 minutes; I wished we had known in advance. I know London has inflated prices, but this seemed ridiculously cheap to me.

It makes my top 5 museums ever {actual list to be determined, but I'm sure it makes the cut.} We practically begged some tourists we found in the street afterwards to pay it a visit. Please go! I'm hoping to rejuvenate its fortunes.

Next on my list, the Pencil Museum {has anyone been?}

Black and white photos by Katchoo on Flickr.

14 comments:

gemmipop said...

Wow, that looks like a beautiful place! I think a day out over the summer might be on the cards!

Ms M said...

Looks amazing. My cup of tea. Im putting it on the to do list...another thing x

domestikate said...

My mum and dad went to the pencil museum! Can't remember what they said about it, but they did send us a postcard!

Lisa-Marie said...

Oh my. A whole room of just writing things. I WANT TO GOOOOOOOO!

Becky said...

Amazing! Have you seen Hannah's trip to the Teapot Museum? Equally random but also fascinating!

http://seedsandstitches.blogspot.com/2011/06/teapot-museum-kenta-little-slice-of.html

coco said...

this looks like a really nice place! i actually like this kind of museum better than the regular ones... everything looks so much more authentic here.

Brown Paper Packages said...

Oh my goodness! I cannot tell you what a thrill I got when I read your comment on my humble little blog - thank you so much for dropping by and reading a bit of my blog... I am DEVOURING yours with such enthusiasm. From one tea lover to another. Merci! Have a fabulous week! Angy

conversationpieces said...

Looks like an amazing old place... I don't think I've ever been to Birmingham so it could be an excuse to go :) I'm sure the other half won't question a trip down south to go to a fountain pen museum!

Eleni said...

Hello, thanks for reading my blog! If only there was some kind of clock museum...

The Natural History Museum is my all-time favourite. It still fills me with wonder :)

Laura said...

This looks great! Wish i lived nearer birmingham.. and the pencil museum, woo!

my spatula said...

I'm so jealous. Wish I was closer to Birmingham...I'd be there in a heartbeat. Thanks for sharing! I'm inspired!

Helen said...

I'm ashamed to say that although I lived in Birmingham for many years and always meant to go, I've never actually been. I will though... promise.

This place is another absolutely amazing small museum. http://www.bakelitemuseum.co.uk/

alisha said...

I'm embarrassed that even though I lived 5 minutes from the Pen Museum I never went. Yet, randomly I did get to pop into the pencil museum in Keswick. I think it was good but I didn't do the whole tour so can't give a full report. Hope you had a nice day in Brum. :)

Andy Merrills said...

This looks great! And the pencil museum is a treat too. I always pop in whenever I'm passing through Keswick. It's like a tiny corner of wonderfulness in a town of, well, wonderfulness really.