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Visits to the Bank of England for Free: You Can Bank On It
As part of this summer's City of London Festival, the Old Lady of Threadneedle Street will be throwing open her doors and revealing parts of the building that are not usually accessible to the public.
The Bank of England (Image Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons: Image Credit Andrew Pingstone)
There will be two opportunities to visit this historic institution and tours will be led by Bank of England Museum staff. This will give you a chance to see the Governor's office, the Court Room, the Committee Room (where the Monetary Policy Committee meets monthly to set Bank Rate) and the Garden Court, if the weather is kind.
In addition to the thirty-minute guided tour, there will be full access to the Bank of England Museum, including activity sheets for children and an attempt for all to lift a gold bar valued at £300,000: I've tried and I can promise you that you need to get to the gym first and lift a few weights as it is heavier than it looks. If you still want to learn more you can attend presentations on banknotes in the Museum Cinema.
As well as learning about the Bank's history dating back to its founding in 1694, you will get an opportunity to operate a hot air balloon in an attempt to understand more about inflation and how the Bank tries to control it.
The Sealing of the Bank of England Charter in 1694 (Image Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)
Unfortunately you won't get an opportunity to visit the gold vaults as the Queen did a few months ago, but you too may also be able to ask questions of the museum guides.
Entry to the two open days is free, but you are advised to arrive early to avoid disappointment. Whatever you do don't try to get in at the Bank's main entrance: the Bank of England Museum's front door is round the corner on Bartholomew Lane.