The Imperial War Museum (IWM) tells the story of those whose lives have been shaped by conflict, from the First World War to the present day, through permanent and temporary exhibitions.
Now, it is offering exclusive hire to party hosts, whose guests can sip Champagne in the shadow of WW2 aircraft and dance to the swinging, Big Band sounds of the 40s within sight of an original Enigma code breaker.
Several spaces are available, from the soaring, vaulted Atrium, to the elegantly sophisticated Orpen Boardroom.
Peyton Events, the museum’s catering and events partner, has created a festive vintage-themed package, for either drinks receptions or more formal, seated Christmas dinners.
For receptions, along with prosecco served in vintage style Champagne saucers, organisers can opt for either canapés, bowl food or a combination of both.
Festive canapés include warm Stilton croustade with cranberry chutney, hot smoked salmon fishcake with crushed green apple salsa and venison pâté on Parmesan and juniper shortbread.
Alternatively, bowl food choices include pine roasted carrots with parsnip, caper and cauliflower crumble, Newlyn squid with confit garlic mayonnaise and turkey with prune stuffing and a tarragon jus.
Those opting for a formal three course meal can take their pick from starters such as Dedham Vale beef fillet carpaccio with wild rocket and Parmesan, slow cooked salmon with heritage beetroot or winter vegetable salad with shaved chestnuts, salsify, game crisps and blueberries.
Main courses include the traditional Christmas fare of roast turkey and trimmings, slow roast shoulder of Suffolk pork with Jersey Royals, green beans and a caperberry, mint and basil dressing and roasted squash with goat’s cheese and wild mushroom.
Desserts to round off the meal include dishes such as hazelnut and chocolate torte, Christmas pudding tart and grilled apricot and thyme frangipane, followed by coffee and mince pies.
The Peyton Events team can provide additional 1940s style treats, such as live big bands, performing classic hits from the era with a few modern favourites thrown in and pre-party dance classes for those keen to throw some authentic shapes on the dance floor.
“This was an era when Blue Birds flew over the White Cliffs of Dover, lipstick was a luxury and Land Girls danced with the Home Guard to the Chattanooga Choo Choo,” said Laura Fitzgerald, senior sales manager for Peyton Events.
“And nowhere brings it to life quite like IWM London.”
The packages start at £156 per person for 300 guests or more in the Atrium, and £200 per person for a minimum of 50 guests in the Orpen Boardroom.