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The Collections

The Collections The Collections

Explore Our Versatile Collections!

The Museum and Heritage Service has a museum collection which was built up over the 20th century by the London Borough of Sutton and the three local authorities that preceded it.
At present the collection comprises:
  • Pictures in various media - oil paintings, watercolours, drawings and prints - including local scenes and works by local artists dating from the 17th to the 20th century (approximately. 1100 items).
  • The Frank Dickinson Collection: not only the furniture, paintings and contents of Little Holland House, but also various personal effects and letters, books and ephemera relating to him.
  • A quantity of social history items, including objects and memorabilia from the Second World War. 
  • Domestic items and kitchenware - used in the routine household maintenance, mainly from the early 20th century.
  • A large quantity of items including archaeological finds, natural history and geological specimens, fossils, coins, tokens, medals and ethnographic items presented to Carshalton Urban District Council by the Beddington, Carshalton and Wallington Archaeological Society in 1931.
  • Ceramics including the Absolem Collection of porcelain, both oriental and British
  • Archaeological items and pottery finds from various local excavations including the finds from the medieval Cheam pottery kilns.
  • Various architectural fragments both large and small from demolished local buildings, including pieces of ironwork from Sutton Public Hall, Allders (Shinners) department store; cast iron and stone fireplaces and mantels, and foundation stones from various secular and ecclesiastical buildings.
  • A collection of clothes and accessories ranging in period from Victorian to modern.  There is an upper class, female, Victorian-Edwardian bias.
  • Musical instruments, radiograms, record players and associated items.
  • Toys - mainly, but not exclusively, a collection of Victorian and Edwardian toys and games donated by Margaret Maitland Howard.
  • Militaria - mainly 20th century uniforms and medals.
  • Coins and tokens - both British and foreign, although the main bulk of the collection is either from the Roman period or English of the Victorian or Edwardian era.
  • Metal cups and shields from former schools and businesses within the Borough.
  • Ephemera and photographs - not complete collections (which are passed to the Archive Service) but the odd items which relate to objects in the collections, or the personalities associated with them and would have little relevance to the Local Studies Collection.
Some of the collection is on display in our historic houses - Honeywood, Whitehall and Little Holland House, either long term or in temporary exhibitions. Items which are not on display can often be made available for study.
If you would like more information, please contact Jane Allen, Heritage and Arts Service Manager, either by email or by telephone on 020 8770 4622.
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