Ahoy there! The V&A Museum of Childhood focuses on fictional pirates and their influence in popular culture.
Developed in collaboration with children, the exhibition’s immersive and playful set design takes its young visitors into an imaginary swashbuckling world of adventure and exploration. At its heart a large-scale pirate ship inspires learning through active play.
Key loans and objects from the V&A’s collections, including toys, games, books, illustrations and comics, spanning over 300 years, chart the reimagination of pirates in popular children’s culture from Victorian Britain to the present day. Real pirate coins and treasures bring visitors into contact with a more authentic world, allowing them to see what influenced their favourite pirate characters.
Highlights include the first painting of Captain Pugwash, an original illustrated costume design for Captain Hook for the first production of Peter Pan in 1904, Lego’s iconic Black Seas Barracuda ship and real 18th-century Spanish doubloons.