Thursday 18 May, 2017

The National Museum of Scotland was triumphant at the Museums and Heritage Awards in London last night, taking the top accolade in the Permanent Exhibition category for ten new state-of-the-art galleries, dedicated to decorative art, design, fashion, science and technology which opened in July last year.

National Museums Scotland fought off tough competition from the Imperial War Museum, the Mary Rose Trust, the National Trust and National Museums Liverpool to take the prestigious award.

Now in its fifteenth year, the annual Museums and Heritage Awards recognise projects of excellence, celebrating best practice within the world of museums, galleries and visitor attractions across the UK and Europe.

The £14.1 million redevelopment which opened in the National Museum of Scotland’s  150th anniversary year was the latest phase in an £80 million Masterplan to transform the Museum and showcase the breadth of its world class collections.

Dr Gordon Rintoul, Director of National Museums Scotland commented,

“We are delighted to receive this prestigious award especially against such stiff competition. This award recognises an incredible amount of hard work and creativity from staff and contractors, ensuring the delivery of ten exceptional new galleries which are proving extraordinarily popular with our visitors.”

The National Museum of Scotland also won this award in 2012 for the previous stage in the redevelopment of the National Museum of Scotland – in 2011 the £48 million project returned the listed Victorian building to its original glory, creating spectacular new public spaces and creating 16 new galleries in which to display the wonderful national collections.

Further information and images from Alice Wyllie or Bruce Blacklaw, National Museums Scotland Press Office on 0131 247 4288 or

Notes to Editors

  1. National Museums Scotland is one of the leading museum groups in the UK and Europe and it looks after collections of national and international importance. The organisation provides loans, partnerships, research and training in Scotland and internationally. Our individual museums are the National Museum of Scotland, the National Museum of Flight, the National Museum of Rural Life and the National War Museum. The National Museums Collection Centre in Edinburgh houses conservation and research facilities as well as collections not currently on display. 

  2. The National Museum of Scotland is the most popular museum in the country outside of London (source: Association of Leading Visitor Attractions). The National Museum of Scotland was awarded ‘Gold’ Level Green Tourism Visitor Attraction status in 2016.

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