Visit: The Old Operating Theatre Museum and Herb Garret

  • The Old Operating Theatre Museum and Herb Garret |
  •  |

In 1703, the roof space of St Thomas’ Church began to be used as a herb garret by the apothecary of St Thomas’ Hospital to prepare and store medicinal herbs. The operating theatre – the oldest surviving example in Europe – was added in 1822. Among the items in the museum’s collection are early surgical instruments and operating equipment, bleeding bowls, leech jars, pill boxes and poison bottles. On this visit, members will hear the fascinating and often gruesome history of surgery in the days before anaesthetics, antiseptic and modern medicine.Please note: the museum is reached by a climb of 32 steps up a stone spiral stairway inside the bell tower with a rope handrail – this visit is not recommended for those with mobility difficulties.

Nearest tube: London Bridge

Venue details

The Old Operating Theatre Museum and Herb Garret
9A St Thomas' Street London SE1 9RY