Historic collections

Cuming Museum collection

The Cuming Museum collection has at its core the original items collected by the Cuming family and bequeathed to the borough in 1902. This includes many special objects from all over the world, curiosities, ancient history, archaeology, social history, 19th century English popular art and natural history. It is an intact 19th century 'Cabinet of Curiosities' collection, one of very few still in existence.

The collection also includes gifts and donations made during the 20th century, including the Lovett collection of London superstitions, archaeology and social history telling the story of the development of Southwark and its people. Many items from the Cuming Museum are available to view online.

Southwark Archives collection

The Southwark Archives collection includes historic prints and photographs documenting the history and development of the borough. The collection also includes historic maps, ephemera, works of art on paper and a wide range of historic documents. Some items are available to view online or at the library and others can be viewed by appointment. Find out more.

Southwark art collection

Within Southwark the Culture and Heritage services currently care for the Southwark art collection which was formally housed at the South London Gallery.

The collection contains a variety of fine art including approximately 250 Victorian oil and water-colour paintings and around 2000 works on paper, including prints. The collection also includes contemporary art by artists connected with south London. Many artworks from the Southwark art collection are available to view online.

Page last updated: 26 November 2021

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