In general city exhibitions emphasize on the history of the priviledged. The history of the common folk (around 80% of the population) is showcased in open-air museums, but the focus is mainly on the rural population and fishing communities.
The Dutch Museum for Working Class Neighbourhoods (‘Volksbuurtmuseum’ in Dutch) in Utrecht is the only one of its kind in the Netherlands. Plenty of museums focus on city history but they rarely cover the day-to-day life of the ‘common man’ in the 19th and 20th centuries.
Local residents were actively involved during the foundation of the museum (previously known as ‘Volksbuurtmuseum Wijk C’). They were interviewed to keep the neighbourhood’s identity alive and they also donated personal items. The small community-based museum focusses on District C (‘Wijk C’ in Dutch) in Utrecht. They collect, preserve and exhibit the cultural heritage of this vanished district.
Highlights of the museum
- Interactive back alley: experience what it was like to live in Wijk C in the shabby conditions around the year 1920.
- Multimedia presentation on the characteristics of a working-class neighbourhood makes you think about the misconceptions and prejudices.
- Historical vending carts with sounds fragments and stories
- The original interior of a pre-war bakery shop. This was one of the eighty depots of Utrecht’s largest bread factory ‘De Korenschoof’. In the upper room you can find the original interior of a folk drugstore.
Tuesday: 11.00 – 17.00
Wednesday: 11.00 – 17.00
Thursday: 11.00 – 17.00
Friday: 11.00 – 17.00
Saturday: every first, second and third Saturday of the month 11.00 – 17.00
Sunday: 11.00 – 17.00
Closed on public holidays
Admission fee €5
Free admission for children up to 12 years old, benefactors of the museum and holders of Museumkaart and U-Pas.
The museum is fully wheelchair accessible.
The museum is located near Jacobi Church on the grounds of the vanished District C, in the city center of Utrecht. It is at about 15 minutes walking distance from Utrecht Central Station.
Address: Waterstraat 27, 3511 BW Utrecht
Tip: On the way from Utrecht Central Station to the museum, you will pass by a Nijntje (Miffy) traffic light, the only one in the world! Once you see the rainbow pedestrian crossing, you will see this unique traffic light. Dick Bruna, Nijntje’s spiritual father, was from Utrecht.