Hampshire Now - your County Council magazine

New Mary Rose Museum welcomed by Hampshire County Council

Wednesday, 05 June 2013

The new Mary Rose Museum in Portsmouth will bring huge economic, heritage and educational benefits to Hampshire as a whole according to Hampshire County Council Leader, Councillor Roy Perry who has welcomed the opening of the landmark venue.

The £35million Museum received funding support from the County Council in 2009-10 with a contribution of £1million towards building and equipping the new venue. Now open to the public following its official launch last week, Councillor Perry believes the Museum will not only attract tourism from across the globe, but will also act as valuable educational resource for school children from across Hampshire who will be able to benefit from the world-class learning resource provided by the new centre of excellence for Tudor History, which houses 19,000 artefacts recovered from the site of the historic ship wreck.

The Mary Rose collection is historically unique and internationally significant, as recognised by renowned experts and academic institutions. She is the only recovered sixteenth century ship in the world and is in effect a 'time capsule' of a period of English history. The Mary Rose Museum is therefore a key attractor within Portsmouth Historic Dockyard, which in turn is of key strategic importance to both Portsmouth and Hampshire's overall £2.3 billion tourism economy.

Cllr Perry said: "The whole of Hampshire will benefit from the new Mary Rose Museum and the County Council's contribution towards it is a significant investment in Hampshire's cultural legacy and future economic prosperity. We are a naval county and very proud of that part of our heritage, and this new world-class venue will allow this extraordinary ship and all her treasures to be preserved for future generations to enjoy.

"As a major international cultural tourist attraction and educational venue, the Museum will also give children from Hampshire's schools and beyond, a unique opportunity to learn about this chapter of Hampshire's naval history, allowing them to immerse themselves in the environment of a Tudor warship, and handle and interact with various exhibits.

"The Museum will also help Portsmouth Harbour develop its importance as a cultural destination which will in turn improve the wellbeing and quality of life of Hampshire residents. It will contribute to the regeneration of Gosport and its proud seafaring heritage, as visitors to Portsmouth are encouraged to cross the harbour to visit other naval museums in Gosport, and in turn boost local trade.

"Meanwhile, as one of only two British warships to survive the First World War, enemy action in the Gallipoli campaign, and the ravages of time, we hope that HMS M33 may also one day become just as famous as the Mary Rose, now that it has been rescued from oblivion by the County Council. The vessel is set to become another popular public attraction at Portsmouth's Historic Dockyard, particularly as the nation remembers the 1914-18 War during next year's centenary commemorations."

The Trust's Learning and Outreach programme has been considerably strengthened over the last few years, especially in Hampshire. Work to date includes a major exhibition at the Willis Museum Sainsbury Gallery, and a programme of outreach taking the Mary Rose story to a variety of community groups across the county, with particular emphasis on engaging adult groups with special access needs. The new Museum will deliver a unique opportunity for Hampshire schools to participate in a history and science programme of national excellence. Hampshire County Council Arts and Museums works closely with the Mary Rose Trust to support delivery of this work.

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