On August 12, 2016 Royal Museums Greenwich (RMG) received a grant of £4,677,100 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) towards a £12.6M project to develop four new permanent galleries, including Pacific Encounters which will “allow the Museum to take a lead role in Cook 250 – the commemoration of Lieutenant James Cook’s 1768 departure down the Thames in HM Bark Endeavour on the first of his three voyages of exploration to the Pacific.”

“The ‘Endeavour Galleries’ project will be completed in 2018, creating four permanent galleries in the National Maritime Museum’s (NMM) East Wing, an area previously closed to exhibition 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 Encounters; Polar Worlds; Tudor and Stuart Seafarers; and Sea Things, 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 – 1.5 million people from Britain and all over the world now visit NMM annually.

The project will convert 1000m2 of space to public use, providing an additional 40 per cent of gallery space in which to place 1,000 artefacts on display, thereby affording Museum visitors better access to its world-class maritime collections.  An extensive programme of activities is also being created to accompany the four new galleries, allowing people to further engage with the Museum’s collections.”

For more on the story, go to the Royal Museums Greenwich website and Heritage Lottery Fund website.