Clink Prison Museum Overview

Discover the dark and brutal world of the mediaeval prison, The Clink, at the Clink Prison Museum which tries to recreate the original prison. Clink Prison Museum is a captivating historical site that gives you a glimpse of the most notorious prison in England and the harsh realities of London’s mediaeval past. The Clink Prison Museum welcomes you with a gloomy entrance and a prison guard appears once you ring the bell. As you walk through the original prison cells, narrow corridors, secret tunnels and atmospheric chambers, you will come to know about the cruel treatment of the inmates. You can see mannequins dressed as prisoners in the cells, listen to moaning sounds in the background and experience the authentic unpleasant smells. 


Listen to the stories of famous criminals, the brutal methods of torture used to extract their confessions and their attempts to escape at the Clink Prison Museum. It also houses a myriad of exhibits and displays including authentic mediaeval torture devices that you can touch. It also offers guided tours, self-guided tours and an immersive audio guide that unveils the hidden facts and intriguing stories about the prison. You can also take part in the ghost hunts, witness paranormal activity and engage in vigils to experience the thrill of investigating this haunted museum.

Things To Do at Clink Prison Museum

Guided Tours
Guided Tours

Clink Prison Museum welcomes several educational groups every year and offers them guided tours explaining the historical, social and religious issues of the Clink. The students visiting the museum will have the opportunity to handle original artefacts relating to crime and punishment and take part in audio and visual presentations. The highly-trained guide will give an introduction about the site and also verbal presentations and further explanations to the students for an interactive learning experience. The museum gives a wonderful portrayal of crime and punishment through the Medieval, Tudor and Elizabethan time periods for easy understanding. Clink Prison Museum also arranges self-guided tours for student groups.


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Ghost Hunt
Ghost Hunt

Clink Prison Museum is one of England’s oldest prisons that is also believed to be one among the UK’s most haunted locations. Thanks to the museum’s ghostly sightings and paranormal activity, Haunted Happenings, which is the UK's biggest ghost hunting company, hosts ghost hunting experiences for the public. During the ghost hunt, you can participate in vigils and seances and experience the opportunity of investigating this haunted site with Ouija Boards, Glass Divination, table tipping and other methods. There have been reports of glasses being randomly smashed, a woman playing with chains, and doors closed during ghost hunts at the Clink Prison Museum.


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History Of Clink Prison Museum


History Of Clink Prison Museum
  • The history of Clink Prison Museum dates back to the 12th century when Henry of Blois was invested Bishop of Winchester and became second in power to the king. 
  • His Thames-fronted residence was completed in 1144 and was built with two prisons in the palace underground. Thus Bankside was subjected to the laws of ‘ The Liberty of the Bishop of Winchester’ and was governed accordingly.
  • The prison got its name ‘The Clink’ in the 14th century based on the sound of the hammer closing the irons around the wrists of prisoners or the Flemish word ‘Klink’ meaning latch.
  • The Clink housed significant criminals like Sir Thomas Wyatt The Younger who rebelled against Queen ‘Bloody’ Mary 1 and John Rogers who translated the Bible into English from Latin.
  • Several attempts were made to destroy The Clink, such as during the Peasants Revolt in 1381 and Jack Cade’s rebellion in 1450. It endured till 1780, when Lord George Gordon assembled The Protestant Association and broke into The Clink, released all the prisoners and burnt the building.
  • Today, the remains of the prison are preserved within the Clink Prison Museum including an original wall.


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Know Before You Visit Clink Prison Museum

Know Before You Visit Clink Prison Museum

Location

Address: 1 Clink St, London SE1 9DG, UK

The Clink Prison Museum is located on Clink Street, close to the original site, at Bankside in Southwark.

Timing: Sunday to Saturday - 10 AM to 6 PM

The Clink Prison Museum is open on all days of the week from 10 AM to 6 PM with the last entry at 5:30 PM. The museum is closed only on Christmas Day.


How To Reach

  • By tube: Board a train on the Jubilee and Northern Lines and get down at London Bridge tube station from where the Clink Prison Museum is just 4 minutes away. Alternatively, you can also alight at Monument Station and walk to the museum in 5 minutes.
  • By train: London Bridge Rail station is the nearest train stop to Clink Prison Museum and runs a train every 4 minutes.
  • By river transport: MBNA Thames Clippers operates services to Bankside Pier which is only 10 minutes away from the museum.


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Tips To Visit Clink Prison Museum

  • Visit Clink Prison Museum on weekdays and during the early morning hours to avoid heavy tourist crowds. 
  • Consider booking guided tours or engage with the knowledgeable staff for a deeper understanding of the museum’s history and hidden facts.
  • Parents must note that the museum is suitable only for children aged 7 years and above.
  • The museum is not wheelchair accessible and also it does not have a toilet facility.
  • Taking pictures and videos is permitted throughout the museum and admission to the museum includes a free group photo as well.
  • Look for hidden symbols on the prison walls which are believed to be marks left by the inmates.


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FAQs

Why is the Clink Prison Museum famous?

    The Clink Prison Museum is famous for being one of the oldest and most notorious prisons in England. It offers a glimpse into the grim conditions and brutal treatment of prisoners during the mediaeval period, thus unveiling dark secrets and riveting stories of the past. The museum is also renowned for its ghostly sightings and paranormal activity.

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Is the Clink Prison Museum haunted?

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