Royal Museums Greenwich awarded grant to open four new galleries

A portrait of Captain Cook
A portrait of Captain Cook National Maritime Museum

The Endeavour Galleries project will take place over the next three years, creating four permanent galleries in the National Maritime Museum’s (NMM) West Central Wing, an area previously closed to visitors.

The new galleries will relate to exploration in its widest sense – an investigation, a discovery, a way of thinking. Each of the four new galleries will bring the themes alive for people of all ages: Pacific exploration; polar exploration; Tudor and Stuart seafarers; and a gallery showcasing the richness of the museum’s collections.

The Endeavour Galleries project is a response to the museum’s ever-increasing visitor numbers and the public’s growing fascination with the subjects of the NMM - 1.5million people from Britain and all over the world now visit the site annually.

The project will return 1000sqm of space to public use and provide an additional 40 per cent of gallery space in which to place another 1,000 artefacts on permanent display (an increase of 60 per cent on the current number of objects on display) affording museum visitors better access to its world-class maritime collections.

Before going on permanent display, key objects will travel around the country and be displayed at several partner museums to engage new audiences in this important history. 

The Endeavour Galleries project will be completed in mid-2018, to allow the museum to take a lead role in Cook 250 – the commemoration of Lieutenant James Cook’s departure from nearby Deptford in HM Bark Endeavour on the first of his three voyages of exploration to the Pacific.

Notes to editors

The National Maritime Museum holds the world’s largest maritime collection, housed in historic buildings forming part of the Maritime Greenwich World Heritage Site. The National Maritime Museum is part of Royal Museums Greenwich which also incorporates the Royal Observatory Greenwich, the 17th-century Queen’s House and Cutty Sark. Royal Museums Greenwich works to illustrate for everyone the importance of the sea, ships, time and the stars and their relationship with people. This unique collection of attractions welcomes over 2 million British and international visitors a year and is also a major centre of education and research. For more information visit the Royal Museums Greenwich website.

Royal Museums Greenwich incorporates the National Maritime Museum, the Royal Observatory Greenwich and the 17th-Century Queen’s House and Cutty Sark. Royal Museums Greenwich works to illustrate for everyone the importance of the sea, ships, time and the stars and their relationship with people. This unique collection of attractions, which form a key part of the Maritime Greenwich UNESCO World Heritage Site, welcomes over two million British and international visitors a year and is also a major centre of education and research

Further information

Royal Museums Greenwich press office: Sheryl Twigg on tel: 020 8312 6790 or email: press@rmg.co.uk.