World's most unusual museum

  • 14 Apr - 20 Apr, 2018
  • Mag The Weekly
  • Mag Files

In the middle of a purpose-built, unassuming housing estate in South Wales lies on of the world's most unusual and entertaining museums.

Inside a four-storey flat in the shadow of the town’s steelworks, sits one of Port Talbot’s popular tourist attractions.

The Sandfields Estate, a densely-populated community largely made up of social housing, is not a magnet for visitors – but it is home to one of South Wales’ most eccentric characters.

Barry Kirk was born in 1954 and has spent the majority of his life on the estate, previously working in the computer department of the BP chemical plant in nearby Baglan. In 1991 things changed.

He changed his name to Captain Beany. He began painting his face and bald head orange (later even getting it tattooed), donned a golden cape, pants, gloves and boots and began living his life as a fundraising superhero from Planet Beanus, raising thousands of pounds for good causes.

Then, in late January 2009 he opened his own home to the public, calling it Captain Beany’s Baked Bean Museum Of Excellence.

Almost a decade later, the museum is the fourth highest rated attraction in Port Talbot according to TripAdvisor, sitting proudly behind Margam Park and Aberavon Beach.