The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) has announced that it will open its first Paralympic Museum later this year in the Japanese capital.
Housed at Coredo Muromachi Terrace in Nihonbashi, Tokyo, with the cooperation of Mitsui Fudosan, the museum will operate from 25 August to late September and showcase the extraordinary history and growth of the Paralympic Movement.
Visitors to the museum will have the opportunity to learn more about the history of the Paralympic Movement and how, in just 60 years, the Paralympic Games have evolved into the World’s number one sporting event for driving social inclusion.
With exhibitions dedicated to many Para sports, including those that featured at the first Paralympics in 1960, the museum will also excite and inspire with stories of legendary athletes whose remarkable performances have helped to transform global attitudes towards persons with disabilities.
Andrew Parsons, IPC President, said: “As the Paralympic Games continue to grow in size and scale, it is vital that we chart the history of just how far the Paralympic Movement has come in a relatively short space of time.
“We are hugely excited that our first Paralympic Museum will open in Nihonbashi in the heart of Tokyo to coincide with the Paralympic Games.
“The Paralympic Museum will inform and excite visitors with stories and exhibitions of how the Movement has evolved from an event for 16 injured war veterans in 1948 to the world’s third-biggest sporting event in 2020. It is a remarkable history of how one man’s vision has helped transform global society, empowering and enriching the lives of millions of people around the world.
“We are confident the museum will be a must-see attraction this August and September in Tokyo, generating greater enthusiasm, excitement and interest in the Paralympic Games and Paralympic Movement.”
Founded in 1948 by German neuro-scientist Sir Ludwig Guttmann at Stoke Mandeville Hospital in Great Britain, the Paralympic Movement originally focused on the rehabilitation of injured World War II veterans.
In 1960, the first Paralympic Games were held in Rome, Italy, involving 400 athletes from 23 countries. Since then, the Games have taken place every four years and are today recognised as the world’s third-largest sporting event, attracting billions of TV viewers and millions of spectators.
This August, Tokyo will become the first city to host the Paralympics for a second time when it brings together 4,350 of the world’s best athletes from over 165 countries.