National Maritime Museum - Royal Museums Greenwich

Sammy Ofer Wing at the National Maritime Museum
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The National Maritime Museum is the world’s largest maritime museum with 10 free galleries and a vast collection that spans artworks, maps and charts, memorabilia and thousands of other objects.

Venue Type:

Museum, Ship or maritime heritage site, Heritage site

Opening hours

Monday-Sunday, 10.00-17.00. Closed 24-26 December.

Admission charges

Free of charge

Getting there

See our website for full transport details to our site

Additional info

There is limited parking at weekends for cars and motorcycles.
Please call in advance for:
Disabled parking
Guided tours
Library visits

The National Maritime Museum's collections contain over two million items relating to seafaring, navigation, astronomy and time measurement. The collections include Nelson's Trafalgar uniform and the Harrison Chronometers.

The Museum is committed to improving access to its collections and over 10,000 objects are now available online: www.nmm.ac.uk/collections

Collection details

Archaeology, Architecture, Archives, Coins and Medals, Costume and Textiles, Decorative and Applied Art, Design, Fine Art, Maritime, Performing Arts, Personalities, Photography, Science and Technology, Social History, Trade and Commerce, Weapons and War, World Cultures

Key artists and exhibits

  • The Prime Meridian of the World
  • Peter Harrison Planetarium
  • The Queen's House Tulip Stairs and Great Hall
  • John Harrison's famous chronometers
  • Nelson's bullet-pierced coat
  • Relics from the tragic Franklin and Scott voyages
  • New Visions contemporary art programme
  • The Caird Library, including specialist collections for researching family history
Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
painting of Nelson

Nelson, Navy, Nation: The story of the Royal Navy and the British people, 1688–1815

  • 21 October 2013 — 21 October 2020 *on now

From bustling dockyards to ferocious sea battles, the gallery brings to life the tumultuous 18th century, exploring how the Royal Navy shaped everyday lives as it became a central part of society and turned sea-faring heroes into national celebrities.

Journeying from the Glorious Revolution of 1688 to the defeat of Napoleon in 1815, Nelson, Navy, Nation brings together over 250 star objects from the Museum’s collections, from the sailor’s shoes worn to impress on shore leave and love tokens sent to sweethearts, to a fiendish seven-barrelled volley gun and an amputation knife and bullet forceps. Discover what made men join up, how they lived and what kept them in line; and how the Navy loomed large in all areas of the popular imagination, from caricatures to keepsakes and collectables.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Where

National Maritime Museum

Website

http://www.rmg.co.uk/whats-on/exhibitions/nelson-navy-nation/about

view of exhibition The Atlantic: Slavery, Trade, Emire

The Atlantic: Slavery, Trade, Empire

  • 1 November 2013 — 1 November 2018 *on now

This gallery is about the movement of people, goods and ideas across and around the Atlantic Ocean from the 17th century to the 19th century.

The connections created by these movements changed the lives of people on three continents, profoundly affecting their cultures and societies and shaping the world we live in today.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

http://www.rmg.co.uk/whats-on/exhibitions/atlantic-worlds

photograph of medals

Forgotten Fighters: the First World War at Sea

  • 1 August 2014 — 1 November 2018 *on now

As part of the National Maritime Museum’s commemoration of World War One this new gallery explores the naval and maritime dimensions of that conflict.

The horrors of the Western Front have long dominated our understanding of those years, and yet the war at sea was fought on an epic scale and with terrible human loss.

Forgotten Fighters foregrounds the personal stories of those who participated through a wide range of objects including weaponry, photographs, medals and ship models; in a gallery which takes visitors from the heroism of merchant mariners to the shattering realities of naval battle, and from the Falkland Islands and the Mediterranean to the Atlantic and the North Sea.

Where

National Maritime Museum

Admission

Normal admission charges apply.

Website

http://www.rmg.co.uk/whats-on/events/forgotten-fighters

view of exhibition Voyagers: Britons and the Sea

Voyagers: Britons and the Sea

  • 1 November 2014 — 1 November 2018 *on now

Set in the heart of the new Sammy Ofer Wing, Voyagers tells the story of Britain and the sea, illustrating the contemporary significance of maritime histories and the personal stories of our island nation.

The gallery, designed by Real Studios, contains over 200 objects representing the extraordinary depth and range of the Museum’s collection. Voyagers also features a dynamic audio-visual installation created by The Light Surgeons, using bespoke software developed by Flightphase.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

http://www.rmg.co.uk/whats-on/exhibitions/voyagers

view of Traders exhibition at RMG

Traders: the East India Company and Asia

  • 1 November 2014 — 1 November 2018 *on now

Traders: the East India Company and Asia is a permanent gallery exploring Britain’s maritime trade with Asia, focusing on the role played by the East India Company.

For over 250 years, the East India Company uniquely shaped trade between Britain and Asia. The gallery explores the influence of Company trade and power, tracing the changing relationships between Britain and Asia that this brought about.

This trade involved key commodities, different locations and many people. It had consequences that changed Britain and the world and still affect us today.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

http://www.rmg.co.uk/whats-on/exhibitions/traders

photograph of intallation Nelson's Ship in a Bottle

Nelson's Ship in a Bottle

  • 1 November 2014 — 1 November 2018 *on now

We are delighted to announce that thanks to the generosity of many individuals, the fundraising appeal to buy Yinka Shonibare, MBE’s sculpture Nelson’s Ship in a Bottle for the National Maritime Museum and ensure it remains on permanent display has been a success.

The work, which is a scaled down replica of HMS Victory, now has a permanent new home outside the recently opened Sammy Ofer Wing.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

http://www.rmg.co.uk/whats-on/exhibitions/nelsons-ship-in-a-bottle

photograph of child on the Great Map

The Great Map

  • 1 November 2014 — 1 November 2018 *on now

The Great Map provides a space at the centre of the Museum where people can gather, delve deeper into our collections, and join in with events and celebrations. This multi-sensory experience is especially suitable for families.

Walk across the map’s surface, and use a touch-screen tablet to uncover stories of female pirates, Scott’s Antarctic expedition and many more. Understand from live data the currents and winds that drive vessels and people across the world’s oceans and seas.

Have fun on The Great Map playing games with your friends and family. With five games to choose from there is a game for everyone. Pick a card and explore the world as a submarine or build bridges across continents!

Suitable for

  • Family friendly

Website

http://www.rmg.co.uk/whats-on/exhibitions/the-great-map

a black pirate flag with a skull on it

Ahoy!

  • 1 March 2015 — 1 December 2020 *on now

Our new gallery dedicated to our younger visitors. Board a pirate ship, stoke the fire of a steamship, navigate an ice-breaker, and more, all under one roof.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly
Future Spacecraft ©Boeing

Above and Beyond

  • 27 May — 29 August 2016 *on now

Produced by Evergreen Exhibitions in association with Boeing, Above and Beyond is a ground-breaking new exhibition about the wonders of flight and mankind’s remarkable journey to space. Created in collaboration with NASA, this exhibition hopes to inspire the next wave of engineers, pilots and astronauts by taking visitors on an exciting journey through the past, present and future of aerospace in the most interactive exhibition on the subject ever to tour. Packed full with immersive simulations, interactive design challenges and visionary concepts for the future, you can learn how to fly like a bird with Spread Your Wings, take an Elevator to Space and enjoy the view of Earth from above, or go on a Marathon to Mars and see how your body would cope on the long-haul trip to the red planet.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

£9.00 adult | £6.00 child

Website

http://www.rmg.co.uk/see-do/exhibitions-events/above-and-beyond-exhibition

Battleship Warspite at Rosyth ni 1916, showing damage received at the Battle of Jutland

Jutland 1916 - WW1's Greatest Sea Battle

  • 27 May 2016 — 1 January 2021 *on now

Marking the centenary of the Battle of Jutland, this new display presents the compelling story of the ships, technology, strategy and impact of the battle on both the men who fought and their families. 'Jutland 1916' places the battle within the wider context of the First World War, and examines the action itself through audio-visual content created with the grandson of Admiral Sir John Jellicoe, Commander-in-Chief of the Grand Fleet. The gallery also includes material from the Deutsches Marinemuseum and the Bundesarchiv.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Website

http://www.rmg.co.uk/see-do/we-recommend/attractions/jutland-1916-ww1s-greatest-sea-battle

Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.

Festival of British Archaeology: Foreshore Walks and Talks

  • 7 — 9 July 2016

As part of the 2016 Festival of British Archaeology, we are working with Thames Discovery Programme to deliver a series of foreshore walking tours followed by a short talk at the National Maritime Museum.

Each of these events will require a valid travel pass for travel between the walk sites and the Museum. Times may change according to the tides. Please note that because the foreshore can very soft in places and very rocky in others, the foreshore walks are not suitable for wheelchair users.

Timbers in the tides: Rotherhithe to Bermondsey
In between taking in 18th-century warship timbers on this tour, visitors will encounter further nautical remains, World War II bomb damage, evidence of Medieval activity and, if lucky, prehistoric deposits. Afterwards, join us at the National Maritime Museum for a short talk looking at the construction of such ships from Assistant Curator, Nick Ball.
Dates: 7 July 2016
Times: 10.00-13.00
Venue: Location will be confirmed on booking
Admission: £15 adult

Customising London: Custom House and the Port of London
What do structures such as causeways, gridirons, wharves and the river wall itself reveal about how London has changed from the Roman period onwards? This foreshore walk takes in these sites as well as two vessels abandoned and damaged following World War II, before heading back to the Museum for a talk. Here you will find out what our collection of maps and charts can also reveal about the changing landscape of London’s river.
Dates: 8 July 2016
Times: 11.00-14.00
Venue: Location will be confirmed on booking
Admission: £15 adult

Burrells Wharf & SS Great Eastern
This strenuous walk over rocky terrain will examine the launch site of Brunel’s great ship and look into the reasons why it took two months to get the leviathan into the water. Along the way we will see other slipways and possibly both eel traps and the remains of a ship, while the Old Royal Naval College and the Royal Dockyards at Deptford provide a backdrop on the opposite bank of the river.
Dates: 9 July 2016
Times: 11.00-14.00
Venue: Location will be confirmed on booking
Admission: £15 adult

Admission

£15 adult

Giant Nursery Rhymeathon

  • 15 July 2016 10:30am-12pm

Join the Rhymeathon team and spend a morning singing, rhyming and telling stories with us. For this anniversary year expect a visit from the big blue bear plus more surprises.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Website

http://www.rmg.co.uk

Polar Voyage!

  • 25 July — 5 August 2016

Hop aboard RMG Airlines for the journey of a lifetime as we celebrate our Above and Beyond exhibition. Follow in the snowy footsteps of arctic explorers as you head to the North Pole. Whilst you’re there, discover Inuit myths and legends and create your own Inuit launcher.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Website

http://www.rmg.co.uk

Pirate Takeover

  • 6 — 7 August 2016 11:30am-4pm

Oh no, pirates have taken over Greenwich! Join us for a day of fearsome pirate activities, jaunty songs and hair-raising stories.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Admission

£15.00 adult | £7.50 child

Website

http://www.rmg.co.uk

How did Stubbs paint the dingo?

  • 6 August 2016 2-3pm

Until now no one knew exactly how George Stubbs used wax to create his painting of a dingo. Based on exciting new research, this talk reveals the rare techniques he used to paint this famous work.

Website

http://www.rmg.co.uk

American Encounter!

  • 8 — 19 August 2016

Travel across the sea and back in time to when Europeans and Native Americans first met. Take part in performances and make gliding birds from Native American myth and legend.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Website

http://www.rmg.co.uk

Pacific Quest!

  • 22 August — 2 September 2016

Fly to the beautiful Pacific islands and hear about the stories and traditions of the people that live there. Learn about their death-defying journeys across the seas and build a flyable Māori kite.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Website

http://www.rmg.co.uk

International Slavery Remembrance Day

  • 23 August 2016 11am-5pm

The Haitian Revolution on 23 August 1791 was a major event in the abolition of the transatlantic slave trade. Join us for a day of reflection and commemoration with talks, music and family activities exploring the experiences and hidden histories surrounding the trade in human lives. We will observe these lost lives in a commemorative ceremony along the river Thames from 3pm.

Suitable for

  • Any age

Website

http://www.rmg.co.uk/see-do/exhibitions-events/international-slavery-remembrance-day-2016

Resources listed here may include websites, bookable tours and workshops, books, loan boxes and more. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all.

My First Visit

http://www.nmm.ac.uk/server/show/ConWebDoc.21055

A very special introduction to the Museum, tailor-made for our youngest visitors. In these hands-on, multi-sensory taught sessions, children explore treasures of the Museum's unique collection through role-play, games, puzzles, riddles, and handling real objects.

How to obtain

This session is only available to schools groups and must be booked in advance:
call +44 (0)20 8312 8575
fax +44 (0)20 8312 6522
e-mail bookings@nmm.ac.uk

Leading Lives – Leadership lessons from Elizabeth I and Ernest Shackleton

http://www.nmm.ac.uk/server/show/ConWebDoc.20278

Through their stories, students will examine some of the key themes within the leadership module of their Business Studies course, including: management styles; leading in a crisis; team-building; the promotion of a strong image and corporate 'brand'.

How to obtain

This session is only available to schools and college groups and must be booked in advance:
call +44 (0)20 8312 8575
fax +44 (0)20 8312 6522
e-mail bookings@nmm.ac.uk

PortCities London

http://www.portcities.org.uk/london/server/show/nav.001

Use this website to explore the history of maritime London from Roman settlements to today's Docklands. Find out about the individuals and events that have contributed to its wealth and importance, and discover the communities who have made this great port city their home.

The Adventures of Tintin at Sea

http://www.nmm.ac.uk/tintinfun/

Vikings Online

http://www.nmm.ac.uk/schools/resources/vikings-support-materials

This set of downloadable PDF documents has been specially written for teachers. They contain teachers' notes, classroom activiites and clear illustrations to support children studying the Vikings as raiders, traders and settlers.

How to obtain

Download from website.

Getting there

See our website for full transport details to our site

National Maritime Museum - Royal Museums Greenwich
Park Row
Greenwich
Greater London
SE10 9NF
England

Website

www.rmg.co.uk/national-maritime-museum

Telephone

Museum switchboard

020 8858 4422

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.
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