The Bank of England is the central bank of the UK, responsible for delivering ‘monetary and financial stability’ for the country. Established in 1694 as the English Government’s banker and custodian of the country’s gold reserves, it is the world’s eighth oldest bank and the model on which modern central banks have been based. Located in central London, the Bank has a surprisingly good museum, which has the added bonus of being completely free to visit.

The exterior of the Bank of England in London
The imposing main entrance to the Bank sits behind the London Troops War Memorial

Economics has always been an absolute mystery to me, with phrases such as ‘monetary policy’, ‘quantative easing’ and ‘inflation targets’ being utterly meaningless, so I was curious to see if I would learn anything from a visit to the Bank of England Museum.

I had no idea what to expect, thinking it might just be a small, rather boring place that would earnestly try to explain these alien concepts to me with lots of information panels.

I was delighted to find out that my assumptions had been entirely wrong; not only was the museum a really interesting and hands-on place to explore, I actually walked out of there knowing exactly what quantative easing was.

The stock room inside the Bank of England museum
The Stock Office