We also completed another harbour-side museum in Bristol in 2010, now known as M-Shed. Funded by the National Lottery, the pressure was on to transform the current Industrial Museum site into the Museum of Bristol. We had to preserve the building façade, working cranes and railway of Bristol’s dockside past. The design successfully integrated the current museum facility with state-of-the-art displays, dynamic audio-visual materials and important historic collections.
In nearby Exeter, we refurbished the Grade II listed Royal Albert Memorial Museum (RAMM), founded in 1904, which won the Art Fund’s Museum of the Year Award 2012, one of four BAM museums on the list. Working closely with English Heritage, we intricately restored the old and combined it with the new.
There are many more museums and galleries we could mention, from the restoration and expansion of the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford in 2010, where we increased floorspace by 90%, to the 65 metre-long, eight storey high Darwin Centre cocoon at the heart of the Natural History Museum in London, the largest sprayed concrete, curved structure in Europe. But they all have one thing in common – we carefully restore, refurbish and renew these cultural buildings for people. Using our technical expertise, we provide the backdrop for people to discover their local identity and heritage, make new discoveries about the past and preserve their culture in the future. One of the best legacies a building can leave.