The Imperial War Museum has launched a new social-media drive ahead of the reopening of its five branches following a long period of lockdown closure.
The #MissingMuseums campaign invites fans of the institution to share on social media what they missed about its galleries and exhibitions during the past several months.
Along with other museums across the country, IWM’s sites will once again be accessible to the public from 19 May 2021, in line with government guidelines. This includes the IWM’s main site in London, as well as its branches at IWM North, IWM Duxford, and the Churchill Cabinet War Rooms in Whitehall.
Duxford’s outdoor areas, including its airfield, will be accessible to the public from 12 April, but the rest of the museum will remain closed until May. Meanwhile, HMS Belfast, a Second World War cruiser moored on the Thames and owned by the museum, will reopen in July 2021 following major redevelopments.
Several of the museums have extended their current exhibitions into the summer to allow visitors extra time to enjoy them, including Ai Weiwei’s ‘History of Bombs’ exhibit in London.
Commenting on the announcement, Pete Austin, Assistant Director of Marketing and Communications at IWM, said: ‘For museum-lovers everywhere, this year has certainly been one that we won’t forget. Doors have been closed on an unprecedented scale, but with May approaching, our favourite spaces are about to reopen again.
‘We can’t wait to welcome our visitors back to IWM from 19 May,’ he added, ‘but in the meantime, let’s get excited, show some love for all museums across the country, and share what you’ve missed the most.’
Normally, the museum’s five branches would attract over 2.5 million visitors each year, making IWM one of the most popular tourist sites in the UK.