Futureplan: The story so far

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Video Transcript

Over the past eight years the V&A has transformed itself into one of the world’s most exciting museums of art and design.

Since the millennium V&A visitor numbers have doubled to more than two million a year.

Major exhibitions such as Vivian Westwood and Cold War Modern have helped the V&A achieve record attendances and critical acclaim.

A new contemporary program including Fashion in Motion and the Friday Late Series has restored modern design and creativity to the heart of the museum.

The driving force behind this renewal is the Futureplan Initiative. An ambitious remodelling of the whole V&A building.

Futureplan has used the best designers to bring the V&A into the twenty-first century by revitalising visitor facilities and redisplaying collections such as the Hinsey Sculpture Gallery.

An elegant new entrance has given the Victorian façade a contemporary feel.

The John Madejski Garden is now a peaceful focal point at the heart of the museum where visitors can relax and plan their visit.

Futureplan got underway in 2001 when the thirty million pound British Galleries opened to the public.

Every year since new galleries have opened now more than eighteen in all. These include the new Porter Gallery dedicated to a changing program of contemporary exhibitions. And the Jameel Gallery of Islamic Art, which houses the V&A’s outstanding Middle Eastern Collections.

June 2008 saw the opening of the glittering William and Judith Bollinger Jewellery Gallery which houses more than three thousand jewels in a dramatic contemporary space.

The Sackler Centre also opened in 2008. The V&A’s new education centre is a beautiful, practical, and modern space enabling people of all ages to study art and design.

Over a century ago, the V&A opened the first ever museum restaurant, an ornate and spectacular space. Futureplan has restored the café to its original glory and added a bright and airy modern extension.

By the time the first phase of Futureplan is completed in 2009, 120 million pounds will have been spent.

Next year many more new galleries will open, including dedicated spaces for ceramics and for theatre and performance. And phase one will culminate with one of the most ambitious Futureplan projects to date.

In November 2009 a complete wing devoted to the Medieval and Renaissance period will open. The ten galleries displaying some of the V&A’s greatest treasures.

These dramatic developments will mark a fitting end to nine years of extraordinary change and renovation.

When Futureplan began, its ambition was to make the V&A a world-class twenty-first century museum that ambition is now a reality.


Since 2002, the V&A has transformed itself into a world-class modern museum with a series of developments that are part of the ambitious Futureplan scheme. So far this programme has included the creation of the British Galleries, new sculpture galleries, the restoration of the ceramic galleries, the creation of the Sackler Centre, the reinstatement of the original cafe and much more. This look at Futureplan shows how phase one of the scheme came to a conclusion with the 2009 completion of the Medieval and Renaissance Galleries.


This look at Futureplan shows how phase one of the scheme came to a conclusion with the 2009 completion of the Medieval and Renaissance Galleries...