Saturday 11 December and Sunday 12 December

Free, drop in, 10am – 3pm

IWM London


Free event

Christmas time is nearly here and as you begin to make the preparations for the big day, IWM London is exploring what preparations looked like for the families on the home front during the Second World War.

Wartime Mealtimes highlights how food can bring us together even in wartime. Take part in our four festive explorations:

We Were There

Veteran talks to children during we were there activity

We Were There

Our group of We Were There veterans and eyewitnesses share their own experience of food during wartime and what their family Christmases were like.

Ask questions or just come and listen to people who lived this history.

Drop in from 11am until 1pm and 2pm until 3pm. Find them on levels 0, 1 and 2. All our eyewitnesses and veterans are volunteers, who give their time to share these important stories.

Christmas on the Home Front

Woman waving dressed in 1940s fashion with red hair, blue cardigan and red dress.

Christmas on the Home Front

Join a factory worker in her 1940s home as she prepares for Christmas. Learn about what the festive season was like in the face of shortages as well as some ingenious substitutes. It may seem quite different but there will still be games and decorations to make you feel at home.

Find this activity on Level 0 at 11am, 12pm, 2pm and 3pm. This interactive performance is created by story telling experts Story Spinner.  

Wartime Kitchen

Family tasting samples of food. Two parents and two children.

Wartime Kitchen

Get the opportunity to taste real Second World War recipes.

Exactly how many things you can make with a humble root vegetable? See and taste some culinary history from Second World War recipes with samples and conversation about the challenges of cooking “On the ration”.

Find this activity in the IWM London Cafe on Level 0 at 10:30am, 11:30am and 2:30pm. Developed in partnership with RA Venues. 

Sugar Shortages and sharing fairly

© IWM (COI 1092)

Sugar Shortages and sharing fairly

Find out what passed as sweet treats in wartime, how much or little you could get with your rations and see some strange sweetie substitutes.

Through games and fun facts discover more about feeding a family in wartime with shortages, substitutions and seasonality to cope with. 

Find this activity on Level 0 from 10am until 3pm.