New gallery at The Royal Engineers Museum in Chatham will recount early story of the Corps

By Richard Hook | 04 April 2011
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a photo of a large old map detailing fortifications
Plan of the defences at Chatham (1756)© Royal Engineers Museum
The Royal Engineers are to exhibit 800 years' worth of Corps history, some of which has never before seen, in a brand new gallery at the Gillingham venue.

Construction on the Early Engineers Gallery and interactive display Memories of Medway has already begun, and the exhibitions will be open to the public in October 2011.

Dominique Bignall, Deputy Curator of the Royal Engineers Museum, praised the Heritage Lottery Fund’s award of a £46,000 grant towards the cost of the project.

a photo of a steel domed helmet with side protectors and peaks on both sides
A 17th century siege helmet© Royal Engineers Museum
“The support of the Your Heritage scheme has enabled us to bring to life a previously unseen side of Royal Engineers history,” she said.

Displays will include a range of rare Napeoleonic-era objects and artefatcs including the oldest-remaining Royal Engineer Penisular War uniform and the map used at the Battle of Waterloo by the Duke of Wellington.

There will be items from the 17th century Siege of Gibraltar, in which Engineers helped mastermind defences that saw British forces keep French and Spanish armies at bay in one of the longest sieges in British miltary history.

The new galleries will highlight the impact of the military heritage on the Medway Town’s physical and social landscape. Local residents will also get to record their experiences of life in Medway and see it used in the new displays.
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