Naval Heritage Centenary

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Telling the story of the Royal Navy in the 20th & 21st Centuries

The  Project

Throughout the 20th Century and now into the 21st, the Royal Navy has continued to shape the modern world.  It has directly touched the lives of the millions of Naval personnel who made great sacrifices and faced great challenges.  It has affected families and the wider communities who built, serviced and supplied its ships and influenced the lives of communities across the world – through conflict and war, but also in ways that many people in this country are unaware of. 

Yet despite this rich history, and the Navy's profound impact on national and international life, there is currently no single exhibition in this country that examines and shares this story.  Rectifying this omission is the aim of this project.

 Storehouse 10

Above: Storehouse 10

Project Summary

The project will

•     Repair, refurbish and restore to its original footprint and external appearance Storehouse 10, a Grade I listed 18th Century Dockyard storehouse.  The Museum shop, which occupied one-third of the building, has already been moved.  False internal walls, which created an artificial internal ‘colonnade’, will be taken down, enabling the whole footprint to be used for exhibition purposes

•     Increase the display space that the Museum can devote to the 20th and 21st Centuries from 200m² to 900m²

•  Use this increased space for the first comprehensive exhibitions in the country on the Royal Navy in this modern period.  The exhibitions will cover 5 themes:

                 *Navy Life   *In War and Peace  *Changing Technology

*The Navy in Popular Culture   *Navy Now and Future

 Artist's view of the new galleries

Throughout the exhibitions will be focussed on the personal experience of Naval Service, in war and peace, for those who served and those who were left at home.  The Museum has very strong collections of personal memorabilia, and in particular oral history recordings, meaning that stories can be told using the individual’s own voice.  Moreover, many artefacts currently in store will be put on public display for the first time.

•  Address the cultural, intellectual, organisational and social barriers that inhibit certain audience groups from visiting the Museum and engaging with the Navy’s story.  This is particularly important in Portsmouth, the economic and cultural history of which has been shaped by the Navy.  Focus groups representing families, Veterans, the Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic community and Over 55s, plus schools, have been and will continue to be involved throughout the planning process, so that the contributions of these groups to the Navy’s story is fully represented and a wide spectrum of learning needs and styles are accommodated.  An increase in visitor numbers of 20% is forecast.

•     Create a Special Exhibition Gallery.  At 200 m² and designed for maximum flexibility, this will, again for the first time, give the Museum the opportunity to mount its own exhibitions, including commemorating important anniversaries, and work with eg other National Museums on the one hand and local groups on the other to establish a rolling programme that will attract repeat visits to the Museum and to Portsmouth historic Dockyard in general

 Artist's view of the new galleries

•  Link the Storehouse to its neighbour (Storehouse No 11, which houses the Nelson and Sailing Navy Galleries) with a ground floor glass link which will significantly improve visitor flow throughout the Museum 

•     Maximise new opportunities for learning based on the exhibitions and an accompanying activity programme, which includes

For schools

•  new workshops at Key Stage 2 (ages 7-11) covering topics such as History and Science and Technology

•  the Story Exchange film project with veterans

•  the World at War multicultural event with members of the BAME community

 Within the community

•  ‘Roadshows’ at local community centres

•  ‘Community Curators’ – projects with different family groups, including families, veterans, the over 55s and BAME members

A Community Outreach Officer will be appointed for an initial period of 3-years (2012-14) to take forward this aspect of the project.

•     Provide new opportunities for volunteering through exhibition and research work and involvement in learning and outreach activities.  A part-time Volunteer Co-ordinator will be appointed for an initial period of 3 years.

 Artist's view of the new galleries


The outline timetable is as follows

November 2011              HLF Round 2 decision

Jan 11 – May 12             Detailed design work and preparation of production    information

May 12 – July 12             Tender period; appointment of contractors

August 12 – June 13       Building work

August 13 – Feb 14        Exhibition fitting out

March 2014                      Completion and opening 


Project Cost

It should be noted that the Development Design Phase has been completed at a cost of £217,000.  This was funded by a Heritage Lottery Fund development grant of £108,000, with the balance coming from the Museum’s own resources.

The cost for the Delivery Phase is £4,500,000, made up as follows:

Building works             




Professional fees

£    409,000


New posts

£    120,000


Expenses for volunteers and focus groups

£     32,000


£     62,000

Printed materials and marketing

£     60,000

Other costs, incl training, conservation, etc

£     47,000



£   288,000


Allowance for inflation

£   126,000




Running costs

The main areas of additional expenditure that the Museum will incur as a result of the project are

• Additional staff: 2 full time Customer Care Assistants will be employed when    the new galleries open, plus a third post, the cost of which will be shared with the Trading Company.

• 2 posts created as part of the project – the Community Outreach Officer and the Volunteer Co-ordinator – will continue on the permanent staff after the new exhibitions are completed

• Rent for the additional space

• Overheads for the new exhibitions  

These additional costs will be met by a combination of increased trading income, additional fundraising, including new events and developing the donor base following the capital appeal, and income from special exhibitions.

Funds received or pledged

To-date, the following has been raised and pledged

Heritage Lottery Fund                                          £1,407,000 (confirmed November 2011)

Partnership Funding


BAE Systems                                               £    40,000

Eranda Foundation                                       £     40,000

Carnival Corporation                                     £     10,000

29th May 1961 Charitable Trust                   £       5,000

Other donations                                           £     12,000

Sub-total                                                       £   107,000


Royal Navy capital bid                                 £   900,000

Veterans Challenge Fund                            £   225,000

J P Getty Jnr Charitable Trust                     £    50,000 

The Sir John Fisher Foundation                  £     25,000

Other pledges                                              £       3,000

Sub-total                                                      £1,203,000

Landlord’s contribution                               £   205,000

Total Partnership Funding to-date             £1,515,000

 Balance required                                         £1,581,000

The museum floodlit at night

For further information on the project, please contact

Julian Thomas

Head of Fundraising

National Museum of the Royal Navy (Portsmouth)

HM Naval Base (PP 66)

Portsmouth PO1 3NH

Tel: 023 9272 7567


The National Museum of the Royal Navy (Reg Charity No 1126283-1) is a subsidiary charity of the National Museum of the Royal Navy (Reg Charity No 1126283).

The Trustees of the National Museum of the Royal Navy reserve the right to alter this project in the light of changed circumstances.  In such instances, all donations received will be put towards new exhibitions on the Navy in the 20th and 21st Centuries and related work at the Museum.

Naming Opportunities

Listed below are examples of individual aspects of the project and their cost.  The Museum would be pleased to associate a donor’s name with the items listed below or to discuss any other aspect of the project.

Major Naming Opportunities

The 20th and 21st Century Gallery                                                     £1,750,000

The Special Exhibitions Gallery                                                          £ 350,000

The Link                                                                                              £ 200,000       


‘In War and Peace’                                                                                  £   750,000

‘Changing Technology’                                                                            £   400,000

‘Navy Life’                                                                                                £   250,000

‘The Navy Now and In the Future’                                                           £   250,000

Introduction                                                                                              £   100,000

The first Special Exhibition                                                                      £   200,000

Other Elements

Exhibitions cases                                                                                    £   340,000

The Activity Area                                                                                     £   175,000

Learning Activities                                                                                   £   150,000

The Experience of War Presentation                                                     £   100,000

Exhibition Graphics                                                                                 £   100,000

Naming opportunities below £100,000

Community Outreach Officer post @ £30,000 pa for 3 years          

Naming opportunities at £75,000

Interactive Timeline                                                                                        

Artefact Wall                                                                                                     

Naming opportunities at £50,000

The ‘Recruitment’ Section

The World Map interactive

Campaign Cases

• The Battle of Jutland

• The Battle of the Atlantic

• The Falklands War

• The Gulf War

Sub-sections of Changing Technology

‘Building and Moving’

‘Talking and Navigating’,

‘Attacking and Defending’

‘Hide and Seek’

Demountable cases in the Special Exhibitions Gallery

A section of the Activity Area

  • Family area aimed at younger children
  • Multi-sensory investigative area for schools/community groups
  • Veterans Area 

Naming opportunities at £30,000

Community Engagement Officer post per annum (3-years in total)

Volunteers Co-ordinator post for 3 years (part-time)

Naming opportunities at £25,000

Conservation of items for display                                                              

The Navy Now and In The Future Debate film

5 Community ‘Roadshows’ (one-day events at community centres around Portsmouth) at £5,000 each

Naming opportunities at £15,000

A video screen and player in the Special Exhibitions Gallery

Naming opportunities at £12,500

Glazing the ceremonial archway

World map in Navy Life section

The demountable wall system in the Special Exhibitions Gallery

‘World at War’: a week-long multicultural event for schools

Naming opportunities at £10,000

The 4-inch gun display in the Link

‘Recruitment’ audio-visual in Navy Life section

‘Portsmouth Families’ film in Navy Life section

Individual stories in Change and Continuity section

‘The Navy in Feature Films’ film

Glass floor creating undersea effect in Changing Technology section

Development of schools workshops and online resources

Volunteers Co-ordinator post (part-time) per annum (3 years in total)

Naming opportunities at £5,000

Portsmouth Harbour Plan for Navy Now and In the Future section

Production of learning resources and activity sheets

A Community ‘Roadshow’ (a one-day event at a community centre around Portsmouth)

A ‘Community Curator’ project: 4 individual projects with different community groups, leading to, for example, an art exhibition or film or museum trail.  Community groups to include Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic groups, Naval Families, the Disabled.

Naming opportunities at £2,500

Families communication interactive

Low-tech interactive ‘games’