Record visitor numbers to UK national museums

Press Release
Date of release: 30 September 2010

This summer saw a record number of visitors to the UK’s national museums.

Over 5.7 million people visited UK national museums in August 2010.  This represents an increase of 11% from August 2009.

Highlights include:

  • A total of 809,443 people visited the four branches of Tate in August, a 15% increase on last year.
  • The Victoria & Albert Museum and the Wallace Collection both saw a 24% increase in visitors compared to August 2009.
  • The Natural History Museum had 592,534 visitors, a 17% increase on August 2009, and the National Gallery had 568,375 visitors, an 18% increase.

In total the UK’s national museums welcomed over 42 million visitors in 2009/10.

The latest Taking Part National Survey of Participation in Culture and Sport results also show an increase in museum visits.  The survey showed that in 2009-10:

  • 46.7% of adults visited a museum, gallery or archive – an increase of 11% since the Taking Part survey began in 2005-06.
  • 68.8% of children aged 5-15 visited a museum, gallery or archive.

DCMS-funded national museums have seen a 41% rise in visitor numbers since the introduction of free admission in 2001, from 28.5 million visitors in 2000-01 to over 41 million in 2009-10.

Highlights include:

  • National Maritime Museum – 197% increase in visitors since 2001.
  • National Museums Liverpool – 178% increase.
  • Natural History Museum – 159% increase.
  • Victoria & Albert Museum – 105% increase.


Press Enquiries:
Erica Bolton, Bolton & Quinn
Email: erica@boltonquinn.com
Tel: 020 7221 5000
Mobile: 07711 698 186

 

Notes to Editors

Sources of Data:

1.    Visitor figures collated from NMDC member UK national museums – includes figures from:
Amgueddfa Cymru-National Museum Wales
British Museum
Imperial War Museum
National Army Museum
National Galleries Scotland
National Gallery
National Maritime Museum
National Museum of Science and Industry
National Museum of the Royal Navy
National Museums Liverpool
National Museums Northern Ireland
National Museums Scotland
National Portrait Gallery
Natural History Museum
RAF Museum
Royal Armouries
Sir John Soane's Museum
Tate
Victoria and Albert Museum
Wallace Collection

2.    DCMS Taking Part: The National Survey of Culture, Leisure and Sport Adult and Child Report 2009/10
http://www.culture.gov.uk/publications/7386.aspx

The Taking Part survey provides reliable national estimates of engagement with sport, libraries, the arts, heritage and museums & galleries. It is a continuous annual survey of adults and children living in private households in England, and carries the National Statistics badge, meaning that it meets the highest standards of statistical quality.

3.    DCMS museums and galleries visitor figure data – includes figures from:
British Museum
Geffrye Museum
Horniman Museum
Imperial War Museum
Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester
National Gallery
National Maritime Museum
National Museums Liverpool
National Museum of Science and Industry
National Portrait Gallery
Natural History Museum
Royal Armouries
Sir John Soane's Museum
Tate Gallery
Tyne and Wear Archives and Museums Service
Victoria and Albert Museum
Wallace Collection