Children throughout the centuries have loved to build things, knock them down and build again! Our collection includes famous examples of building kits from many of the leading makers including Richter Anchor Blocks, Meccano, Lotts, Minibrix, Bayko, Kiddicraft, K’Nex and Lego. 

Alphabet blocks

Alphabet blocks

Most children have played with alphabet blocks at sometime. They are now known as a classic educational toy.

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Bauhaus Bauspiel construction set

Bauhaus Bauspiel construction set

This wooden construction set was originally designed at the Bauhaus in Germany by Alma Siedhoff-Buscher.

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Bayko

Bayko

In 1933 Charles Bird Plimpton set up the Plimpton Engineering Co. Ltd. especially to manufacture Bayko.

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K'Nex

K'Nex

The original K’nex comprised of simple rods and connectors which could be easily attached to each other.

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Lego

Lego

Lego was invented by Ole Kirk Christiansen from Denmark, who started making wooden toys in 1932.

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Lott's Bricks

Lott's Bricks

The English manufacturer E. A. Lott devised a new system of bricks suitable for assembling small buildings, and manufactured them in Watford.

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Minibrix

Minibrix

Patented in 1935, Minibrix were construction kits that enabled children to build their own miniature houses.

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Meccano

Meccano

Meccano is one of the best known British construction toys. It was the invention of Frank Hornby (1863-1936) and has been around for over 100 years.

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Mr Potato Head

Mr Potato Head

The original Mr Potato Head contained only parts, such as eyes, ears, noses and mouths, and parents had to supply their children with real potatoes.

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'Structator' construction set

'Structator' construction set

In Germany in the 1900s Bing was the largest toy company in the world, known for its train sets and steam-powered toys.

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Super Helta-Skelta

Super Helta-Skelta

This unusual example of a construction toy can be built out of 29 plastic sections.

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Patrick Rylands Cool Cat

The V&A online shop stocks a distinctive and refreshingly different range for children, big and little, then and now, including toys, games, books and accessories.

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Tel: +44 (0)20 8983 5200 | V&A Museum of Childhood, Cambridge Heath Road, London E2 9PA