Benjamin Pollock's Toyshop 'The Nutcracker'

by Louise Heard in London, Greater London, United Kingdom

We did it
On 16th November 2021 we successfully raised £12,612 with 79 supporters in 28 days

The oldest and last toyshop in Covent Garden. We live for Christmas. Help us produce 'The Nutcracker' a paper theatre by John Macfarlane.

by Louise Heard in London, Greater London, United Kingdom

New stretch target

The initial pledges will pay for the first run of The Nutcracker. With your investment we can go onto to produce more of the series to help us through next year. Next in production is an updated version of a production staged in 1921. 100 years later we need to make a toy theatre for children of the 2020s. We want to keep the tradition but engage the next generation to keep theatre and toy theatre alive.

Long running show

40 years of independent shopkeeping was brought to a halt in March 2020 but after three lockdowns Benjamin Pollock's Toyshop is back and raring to go boldly into 2022 with exciting new products and projects. Please join us, you’ll be in good company!

John Macfarlane - From Swan Matches to Swan Lake

As a boy John Macfarlane was shown how to make a miniature theatre from a matchbox by his father. Now as a distinguished and world renowned theatre designer John has returned to his childhood love for model theatres by painting an exclusive proscenium for Benjamin Pollock's Toyshop which will be turned into a printed model paper theatre.

The Nutcracker in Miniature

Birmingham Royal Ballet’s production of The Nutcracker with sets by John Macfarlane is to be transformed by British paper designers Cutture into exquisite miniature forms for all budgets. The costumes and sets will be lovingly recreated - not only will you be able to purchase an original and limited pop-up card, paper theatre or luxury paper model based on John’s designs, you will have the chance to be part of theatrical history by pledging a reward for one.

Continuing a Tradition

This series of highly original theatres in miniature continues the tradition that Benjamin Pollock started in the 1880s. In the last decade, we have revived this unique British theatrical heritage by collaborating with contemporary artists to produce new works.

Speed to Pollock’s

‘To play’ - to play a game, to play with toys or friends, to play music or to put on a play. Our mission at Benjamin Pollock's Toyshop is to celebrate and promote the idea of ‘play’ in the best sense, to bring to our customers the joy and delight of playing with toys and the creativity they can unlock in our imaginations.

To quote Robert Louis Stevenson, who wrote this about our namesake: “If you love art, folly and the bright eyes of children..then speed to Pollocks”!


Thank you to all our customers and dedicated supporters. 

We have received testimonials from Emma Thompson, The New York Daily News, Gwyneth Paltrow, Ralph Fiennes, Joanna Lumley, Nigel Slater, Claridges and West End Live among others.

“One of the shops I adore is Pollock’s Toyshop - you have to look for it, you have to go’s honestly lIke stepping back into a Dickens story”. Joanna Lumley, Voices at One for One Aldwych.

"This has to be the most charming shops on the planet' - Shop customer 2021


This project offers rewards in return for your donation

£20 or more

19 of 100 claimed

A Pop-Up Christmas Card of The Nutcracker (Gods)

A thank-you and Christmas card from Benjamin Pollock's Toyshop. We will send you a wonderful pop-up card designed by luxury paper artists Cutture based on the theatre designs by John MacFarlane of The Nutcracker.

£45 or more

26 of 100 claimed

Pop-Up Theatre Card by John Macfarlane (Circle)

With a proscenium exclusively painted by John Macfarlane for Benjamin Pollock's Toyshop, this pop-up theatre card features 3 moving characters from Tchaikovsky's classic Christmas ballet. The curtain lifts to reveal a scene representing John's designs for The Nutcracker. The pop-up theatre is an exquisite paper sculpture to put on a shelf and a chance to own a limited edition print in three-dimensions by John Macfarlane.

£75 or more

0 of 10 claimed

£75 Reward (Dress Circle)

The pop-up cards we are producing are not for sale anywhere. However, for a pledge of £75 we will send you a pack of 6 for you to send as very special Christmas Cards this year or if you are thinking ahead in 2022!

£175 or more

11 of 100 claimed

Model Paper Theatre by John Macfarlane (Stalls)

The design for this paper theatre has been painted by John Macfarlane and will feature 2 scenes from his designs for The Nutcracker staged by The Birmingham Royal Ballet. Lovingly recreated in print, the theatre comes complete with curtain and characters. This model theatre is a unique chance to own a limited edition print in 3-dimensions of John's work. The theatre will be boxed and numbered.

£2,500 or more

3 of 4 claimed

Luxury Model Theatre by John Macfarlane (Box)

A chance to own what theatre designers call 'a model box'. John Macfarlane's original proscenium design exclusively for Benjamin Pollock's Toyshop will be turned into a luxury model theatre complete with gilding. The large model will have interchangeable scenes from The Nutcracker production John designed for the Birmingham Royal Ballet. Individually handmade by British paper designers Cutture, this is a unique opportunity for collectors.

Got an idea like this?

Over £200 million has been raised from our crowd to support the projects they love! Plus tens of millions more unlocked by our partners.