Tycoon's 20m gift to navy museum (BBC News)

SN NewsCaster
27th March 2008, 12:40
A shipping magnate donates 20m to help create a new wing at the National Maritime Museum in London.

More from BBC News... (http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/rss/news/int/search/news%2Bsport/ship/-/2/hi/uk_news/england/london/7316212.stm)

27th March 2008, 20:28
This generous gift will hopefully make the Museums collection more accessible.

And hopefully it will not all be dumbed down like a lot of the current displays there.


Peter Fielding
28th March 2008, 17:28
An incredibly generous and very welcome donation, but why did it have to come from a foreign benefactor? I understand that the gentleman in question is an Israeli. The British taxpayers have just (probably without most of them knowing it) given in excess of 80,000 to London University to enable them to study "the experiences of Irish homosexuals in London".
I give up!!!!

28th March 2008, 17:43
OH MY GOD!!! 35 million pounds to spend on a trendy, new wave, state of the art, interactive (no doubt), kid friendly exhibition which will minimise your maritime heritage. When I first visited the NMM in 1967 as a teen interested in things Naval (and that has lasted all my life to date) it was a wonderful musty place full of guns and models. I fell in love with a 1/48 scale model of HMS Queen Mary and a commissionaire (remember them?) took me up to the drawing office or archive and a very patient staff member showed me ORIGINAL drawings and let me select which ones I might want copied. After my return to Canada, they arrived in the mail in a heavy cardboard tube with OHMS stamped all over it. Lines, GA's, everything you might want to build a model at 1/192 scale. I seem to remember, as well, the total cost was less than 2 pounds.

I would wager that doesn't happen any more.

My last visit was to a sanitised palce with no character, no models (few at any rate), certainly no commissionaires of the old style and nothing to draw me back.

Ah nostalgia!

Don K.

28th March 2008, 19:59

Sadly I agree with you. The only thing I like there is the Caird Library which is well stocked and you can read the originals of many rare books and documents - some hundreds of years old.

You can still get ships plans etc. in the NMM but you need to multiply your figure by between 50 and 100 times for prints. :(

There are still quite a lot of ships models at quite large scale in the Science Museum at South Kensington as mentioned in another thread.



29th March 2008, 01:35
Once upon a time museums and their like were regarded as repositories of history. folklore and knowledge in general. These days, certainly in countries where market oriented policies rule, they are regarded as earners of revenue, cost/profit centres, hence they charge high tolls for admission and their services and look a lot more like Disneyworld theme parks than what we of our generation regard as museums. The first attempt to introduce charging for museums, art galleries, etc, was under the Heath government - 1970 to 74 - and it met with extremely fierce resistance from the professionals and disapproval from the public at large, and was quietly dropped. It re-appeared under our beloved Mrs. Thatcher, by which time the professionals were fully aware that the government of the good lady did not give a toss what they thought and the public no longer seemed to care about such things as much as they once did. And the rest, as they say, is history.
However, it is still good news that some public spirited benefactor has stepped into the breach to fulfill a need left by lack of public funding; it is just a tragedy that such a need exists and will continue to exist elsewhere.