National Army Museum Reopens After Nearly Four Months

The National Army Museum has reopened its doors after being shut for nearly four months over the coronavirus crisis.

The museum in Chelsea, west London, closed on 17 March because of the pandemic. 

It has now put in place a number of changes to help protect visitors and staff. 

New measures include shortened opening hours, so staff and visitors can avoid rush hour travel, and staggered entry times to help ensure social distancing is followed. 

A new route around the museum has also been introduced, as well as hand sanitisation stands. 

Helen Kibblewhite, head of facilities at the museum, told Forces News: “We want people to know that when they’re coming we are still here to help them.

"If they’ve got questions about the route we’re here to help them with that, if they’ve got questions about the exhibits we’re here to still help them with that.

“So a bit more structured as they go round, but we’re hoping that level of visitor engagement is still there." 

While entry to the museum remains free, a strict ticketing system is in place

The gift shop, toilets and lifts will remain open but the cafe, children's play area and some exhibits will be closed.

The museum remains free and is capping the number of visitors allowed per timeslot.
The museum remains free and is capping the number of visitors allowed per timeslot.

Dawn Watkins, the museum's assistant director, said she was confident visitors would still have an enjoyable experience despite the new restrictions. 

“So normally as we ramp up to the school holidays we’d expect anything between 800 to 1000 people a day so very different, we’re looking at about 70 people per timeslot," she said

"So yeah, much reduced but it means that everyone will get a great experience when they’re here.”

On Monday, the Royal Air Force museums at London and Cosford reopened to the public.

It comes as the UK slowly starts to lift more restrictions put in place over the pandemic. 

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