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Project information

Search & Rescue

Search & Rescue is our new major exhibition which will be on display in the Museum from March 2012. We will be working with the RAF, the Royal Navy, the Coastguards and the RNLI to put together an exhibition telling the stories of the rescuers working around our coast to save lives.

March 2012 - January 2014

Charity information: National Maritime Museum Cornwall Trust

National Maritime Museum Cornwall Trust logo
  • Need


    Project is trying to raise public awareness of the dangers of the sea. Cornwall is surrounded on three sides by the sea but many people underestimate the dangers involved in spending a day on the beach or out on the water.


    By working in partnership with the rescue services, the National Maritime Museum Cornwall will create an exhibition which is both inspiring and educational and will bring across the key messages of sea safety in a fun and accessible way. Attached to the exhibition will be a schools programme relating to sea safety and there will be a programme of talks and lectures throughout the life of the exhibition ensuring that the Museum can reach current and future generations of sea lovers.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To create an exhibition displaying the work of the rescue services around our coast


    » Research local and national rescue stories with the help of our partners in the rescue services
    » Access objects for the exhibition including 'wow factor' exhibits and personal ephemera telling individual stories from the various services displayed
    » Involve the local community in putting together the content of the exhibition by putting our an appeal for stories and objects
    » Conduct interviews with rescuers and their families to create an oral history archive some of which will be used in the exhibition and online

    What success will look like

    Success will be demonstrated through an increase in visitor numbers as a direct result of the exhibition as well as active public engagement in the public appeal.

    Aim 2

    To create an education programme to support the exhibition


    » Work with the Local Authority, the Sense of Place initiative and local schools to create a programme accessible to all 232 cornish primary schools
    » To develop a programme of gallery talks and lectures which will run throughout the course of the exhibition
    » To create a family activity programme which will be available to visitors throughout the life of the exhibition during all school holidays (112 days)

    What success will look like

    Success will be demonstrated through the effective creation of a workshop delivered to 1,000 Key Stage 2 children in cornish schools

  • Impact


    It is hoped that the project will result in visitors having an increased awareness of sea safety and that they will use this knowledge to act responsibly when on the beach or out on the water.

    Although it will be difficult to quantify this, the rescue services will be able to confirm whether the number of call outs has reduced as a result of the project.


    One of the main risks to the project would be the withdrawal of one of our key partners. To avoid this happening, we have been working with each of the partners already and engaging them in our plans to ensure they are happy with what is being proposed.

    The other risk would be a lack of sufficient funding to create the type of exhibition we we have planned for. To minimise this risk, we will be securing many of our objects through the in-kind support of our partners and the local community.


    Donors will receive a quarterly report outlining progress of the project. They will also be invited to any events which are planned enabling them to talk to project staff, partners and beneficiaries.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £85,000

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      Amount Heading Description
      £28,000 Exhibition design research & development, planning
      £25,000 Exhibition production graphic design, interactive displays, cases
      £10,000 Education programme design & delivery of workshop, family activities
      £12,000 Publicity & promotion advertising, posters & leaflets, mailouts and maildrops
      £10,000 Conservation & display essential conservation work to objects to prepare them for display

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    National Maritime Museum Cornwall £40,000 Guaranteed
  • Background


    The project is located at the National Maritime Museum Cornwall in Falmouth. Falmouth is a port on the south coast of the county and has a lifeboat station and one of the principal coastguard stations in the country. Thousands of holiday makers head for our beaches every year and we have a very large boating community with many annual festivals celebrating the sea. We are ideally placed to host a project of this kind because we are well placed to reach our target audiences.


    The primary beneficiaries of this project will be Museum visitors. We receive an average of 250,000 visitors over the life of one of our major exhibitions which is generally two years. Of this number, school visits total approximately 8,000 per annum. All of these visitors will have the opportunity to learn from the exhibition and to take the safety messages away with them to pass on to others and to use for themselves when on the beach and out at sea.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    The Museum is located in Falmouth on the south coast of Cornwall. It is a purpose-built museum which has a track record of extremely successful major partnership exhibitions. The Museum is embedded in the local community and is supported by 170 volunteers all of whom live locally to it.

    We are best placed to carry out this project because of our track record but also because of our location. Falmouth is a popular seaside town with a coastguard station and a lifeboat station.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Ben Lumby

    Ben is our Exhibitions Manager and is one of our longest serving members of staff. He has provided outstanding exhibitions with limited resources.

    Milly Newman

    Milly is our Exhibitions Development Manager. She is extremely creative and will be key to the development and delivery of the project.

    Sarah Riddle

    Sarah is our Curator and will be an essential member of team when it comes to identifying and conserving the objects which will be chosen for display.

    Stuart Slade

    Stuart is our Education Manager and brings with him many years of experience in the museums sector. He will be responsible for the education programme

Volunteer helps with make and take activities

Volunteer helps with make and take activities


Will pay for a year's family activities