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"National Army Museum - Reopening Date Announced " Topic

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Trajanus28 Jan 2017 9:28 a.m. PST

I think this has been mentioned elsewhere in another thread but in case anyone living or visiting the UK and London in particular,missed it

The newly refurbished and internally redesigned NAM is reopening on 31st March 2017.


martin goddard Sponsoring Member of TMP28 Jan 2017 9:41 a.m. PST

That will be very interesting. Is the Sebourne (sp) waterloo diorama back on show??

Doug MSC Sponsoring Member of TMP28 Jan 2017 9:57 a.m. PST

Great! I'm going to England this summer and last time I was in London it was closed down.

John Treadaway28 Jan 2017 10:07 a.m. PST

It looks to be ghastly, PC nonsense. I'll probably not bother…

John T

Chokidar Inactive Member28 Jan 2017 10:53 a.m. PST

Agreed John, – it looks like total crap! I used to love the old museum.. and long before that the collection when it was in the Old Riding School… this is just…. rubbish! (Ok we should see it first and expectations are not high but this!!!! Bleeped text!)

Vigilant28 Jan 2017 11:08 a.m. PST

Don't understand your comments John & Chokidar. What is it that you object to? All we can see from the picture is an artist's impression. The list of special exhibitions looks interesting. I fail to see what you mean by "PC nonsense" and "looks like total crap". Last time I went to the museum I thought that it was dark and pokey and in dire need of an upgrade.

Arteis0228 Jan 2017 6:41 p.m. PST

Rats – the day after I return to New Zealand after a our holiday in the UK!

Andoreth29 Jan 2017 3:35 a.m. PST


From one of the press releases,

"The Battle of Waterloo will be brought to life with a new multimedia interpretation of the Siborne Model that enables visitors to investigate both the model and the famous battle."

I wonder how the new museum can be an improvement on the older one which was itself too small to give adequate coverage to lesser conflicts, when space is being given over to child friendly interactive experiences.

The Museum also seems to have rewritten its remit to cover the army up to the present day. It was always my understanding that, barring particular temporary exhibitions which overlapped, the NAM was to cover the army and wars up 1914-18 and that the Imperial War Museum was to deal with later conflicts. Limiting its coverage would mean that it could focus its resources better.

Reactionary Inactive Member29 Jan 2017 9:50 a.m. PST

It doesnt look very good for traditionalists.

Cambria562229 Jan 2017 11:41 a.m. PST

I really hope the new-look NAM will be nothing like most of what I saw of the Imperial War Museum. I was hugely disappointed by a recent visit there after I discovered several of the galleries were laid out 'artistically' with interesting items that lacked adequate explanation or context. (The FWW & Secret War galleries, however, were both interesting and informative.)

It doesn't bode well that one of the NAM Director General's favourite pieces is a child's dressing gown with some military (not just British Army) badges sewn onto it. And as for the 'Society Gallery'; it sounds like a complete load of tosh and a waste of precious museum space. I guess I'm a traditionalist!

Trajanus29 Jan 2017 1:40 p.m. PST

Bloody Hell and I thought a couple of the comments on the NAM Website were from miserable curmudgeon's!

Must be crap! Haven't seen it, won't bother going, wasn't remade to my exact specifications etc etc etc

Never mind if the place had hardly changed in forty years and was so dark and gloomy it looked like Mining museum.

Of course you may agree with the twit who posted in the NAM comments that it had to be rubbish because it isn't the Musée de l'Armee. Well it's not the Spanish Army Museum in Toledo either but as no one saw fit to give over a monumental sized existing building to the purpose, in 1971, successive Director Generals were rather stuffed to begin with, weren't they!

Having been to both of those mentioned (I prefer Toledo) and the old NAM the problems with the site are manifold. As they were with the Imperial War Museum and God what a dump that was prior to its make over.

All I can say is I never noticed the public outcry to make a bigger better wargamer/historical enthusiast friendly, version of the old ones that would be the envy of the world.

It's no different to TV documentaries or mainstream movies they are not made for TMPites. Slagging Museum's off before anyone has seen the real thing achieves nothing.

foxweasel29 Jan 2017 4:57 p.m. PST

It looks good to me. The whole idea is to get people to go and see it, people who may not normally go in. If that means a modern trendy revamp, so what. That's why most local Regiment museums have closed, kids with no ex military family members don't really want to see a stuffed leopard from the 2nd Malakand field force and some tarnished silver.

Trajanus30 Jan 2017 6:52 a.m. PST

My point exactly!

John Treadaway31 Jan 2017 1:08 p.m. PST

Alright, I'll add this. Speaking as a moderate fan of Jimmy Hendrix, the concept of using one of his (not British) 'army' jackets as an exhibition is what I meant by 'PC'. It is, in my opinion, a "very bad idea".

Sure museums have to change and evolve: Bovington is a great example of this. It doesn't make one a Luddite for not wanting to turn the NAM into the V&A…

John T

Trajanus01 Feb 2017 12:26 p.m. PST


Don't know about "PC". Weird maybe but I can't for the life of me think what's "PC" about it.

Maybe it's because I'm old enough to have seen him wearing it! :o)

foxweasel01 Feb 2017 1:10 p.m. PST

I should imagine it's probably something to do with the military having an influence on civilian fashion, Guards tunics were quite common on young men as were great coats, Hendrixs jacket might not be British but it is military.

John Treadaway02 Feb 2017 12:55 a.m. PST

Trajanus: me too!

Foxweasel – agreed.

My point is that by 'PC' I'm suggesting that it really does drag the museum too much into the V&A's territory, IMHO.

As a graphic designer, I enjoy the way that graphic and fashion items are appropriated by other elements within our culture. When I went to Tate Britain a few years ago and saw a Harrier and a Jaguar polished up and presented as 'art' it's what I expect within the context of that museum. Ditto my appreciation of the V&A: clothing fashion is something it specialises in.

I just don't see the requirement to make those 'connections' at the NAM and I think that desire to do so smacks of the sort of thinking (along, incidentally, with everything being an 'activity' to engage preschoolers) that I would dub 'overtly PC'.

Just my tuppence worth.

John T

Trajanus02 Feb 2017 4:15 a.m. PST


OK, understand your point better now but I'll still be going to give it a spin when it reopens, to see what they have done for myself. A lot of good can come from a revamp.

The Green Jackets Museum in Winchester had a bundle of Lottery money thrown at it a little while back and it transformed the place. Fantastic job of making the best of a small space and that has something for kids as well as adults. It's all about balance.

I was really only reacting to blank unacceptance. Which I find the same when people fire off against new rule sets they have never played, or even purchased, because they "just know" they are rubbish!

John Treadaway03 Feb 2017 4:50 p.m. PST


I don't disagree, especially about rules!

"Blank unnaceptance": good phrase.

John T

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