PLB visit Mithraeum Experience

As part of PLB’s continuing best practice research, the team decided to go and visit the newly opened Mithraeum visitor experience below Bloomsberg £1bn European HQ in London. It is a true multi-sensory experience based around the reconstructed remains of the Roman Temple of Mithras, exposed during building construction in 1954 and excavated by the Museum of London.The mythology of Mithras actually involves the young deity killing a primordial bull in a cave. Finished to a very high specification, the archaeological remains are encountered by descending about seven metres below street level to 248AD. The interpretation, simply in presentation, first explores the archaeology uncovered by MOLA through both interactive touchscreen displays and wall projections before you descent further to uncover the mysteries of the site through a minimalist soundscape of shuffling feet and chanting along with light projection onto a haze of mist which begins to scale up the ruins vertical height by creating the impressions of columns all around you.

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Due to the restrained approach the museum designers have opted to allow for a more personal visitor experience, by allowing the individual to use their imaginations but creating an ethereal space that was respectfully quiet and reflective for those who visited. Selected artefacts from the original excavations are displayed within Bloomsberg Space on the ground floor and explored through a downloadable app which worked well when we managed to download it.

PLB Senior Designer Becky commented “it was very effective, the negative areas of the light walls to create the Temple columns was stunning, but the introductory area was a little bit lacking in interpretation, which may leave some visitors disappointed that they can’t find out more”.

More about visiting this free visitor experience can be found at www.londonmithraeum.com/visit/

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