As a history fanatic, Tunde Folawiyo will probably be familiar with the NMM (National Maritime Museum); located in Greenwich, it is one of London’s most well-known museums, and the largest one of its kind in the entire world.
The NMM was established by the passing of the 1934 National Maritime Act, and was funded by Sir James Caird (today, the Government provides most of its funding, although some additional income is obtained via sponsorships and trading activity)). The museum was officially opened to the public by King George VI on April 27th, 1937, with Sir Geoffrey Callender being appointed as its first director.
Its collection is made up of approximately 2.48 million artefacts, all of which are arranged according to their theme, and displayed across three properties. These items provide visitors with insight into the long and complex history of Britain at sea, and include navigational and scientific instruments, ship plans and models, public records, manuscripts, maps and maritime artwork. Many of the nautical items are located in the Royal Observatory, whilst a selection of the paintings can be found inside the Queen’s House .The museum’s collection of British portraits is particularly large, as are its holdings related to Cook and Nelson. Its reference library is equally extensive, with over 100,000 volumes, many of which date back 600 years or more.
The ground floor of the main building contains a gallery called ‘Voyagers’; here, one can find one room dedicated solely to London’s maritime history from the 18th century onwards, another which shows how people lived and worked on ships during World War II, and yet another which honours the memory of British explorers, many of whom lost their lives during their expeditions.
The gallery on the first floor focuses mainly on the trade routes which connected Asia to the New World, with one of the highlights being the ornate stained glass windows, taken from the Baltic Exchange Building in the early nineties. The gallery on the second floor is decidedly more family-friendly, and has several displays designed for children, including a collection of large ship models, the ‘Seahorse’, and the ‘Ship Simulator’; the latter allows children to pretend to navigate a ship.
Folawiyo regularly makes trips to London, and enjoys learning about the history and contents of attractions like the NMM. However, he dedicates most of his time to his business endeavours; for further information about his enterprises, read the Tunde Folawiyo company details.