Thackray Medical Museum Wins National Lottery Support

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The Thackray Medical Museum, in Leeds, has received a confirmed grant of £1.5 million from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) towards its £3.7 million development project, A Healthy Future. The museum has also been awarded £1 million from Wellcome, the global charitable foundation which has a mission to improve health.

Thanks to money raised by National Lottery players, the museum will undergo a refurbishment to enable it to excite and inspire visitors from all walks of life, with brand new exhibitions and updated visitor facilities, as well as making essential repairs and environmental improvements to its historic Grade 2 listed building.

New galleries will include a modern day operating theatre, which visitors will be able to explore, giving everyone the chance to really put themselves in the place of medical teams. The museum will involve community groups, medical professionals and the medical industry in planning the new galleries, which will reflect how thousands of people, in Leeds and beyond, contribute to the world of medicine. The museum has a particular focus on the medical technology industry, which thrives in Yorkshire.

Alongside HLF and Wellcome, the museum will also receive funding for the development from the Thackray Medical Research Trust, Garfield Weston Foundation and the Foyle Foundation. A further £300,000 of funding still needs to be raised.  To find out more about the project and how you can support it, please contact the museum on 0113 244 4343 or visit the website to donate.

Commenting on the award, Museum Chief Executive Joanne Bartholomew said: “We’re absolutely delighted that the Heritage Lottery Fund has confirmed its support for the museum. Thackray Medical Museum is a major asset to Leeds and the Yorkshire region, and with this money, raised by National Lottery players, we will be able to continue providing an inspirational and fascinating experience for thousands of visitors from all walks of life.”

David Renwick, Head of Heritage Lottery Fund Yorkshire and The Humber, said:

“This is a really exciting project that aims to bring to life the fascinating history of medicine, housed in the imposing Leeds Union Workhouse building. This grant, made possible thanks to National Lottery players, will enable the Thackray Medical Museum to involve people of all ages in shaping and sharing the stories of its fascinating past.”

The Lottery grant will be matched by a Wellcome Trust Capital Award of £1 million towards the museum’s development.

Tom Ziessen, Engaging Science Manager, Wellcome, said:

“Wellcome is proud to be supporting the Thackray Medical Museum with this major capital award. Following years of innovation in its programming, this funding will help transform the public’s experience of this museum and start new conversations around the history of medicine and how we, as a society, want to envisage future healthcare.”

The Thackray Medical Museum first opened in March 1997, supported by an HLF grant of £3 million. Twenty one years old this year, the museum has received over 1 million visitors, and is now home to over 70,000 medical objects and books.

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