The World Museum in Liverpool will temporarily close down its Ancient Egypt galleries on Sunday night as it gears up for an extensive, 12-month refurbishment.
The renovation—estimated to cost 800,000 pounds—will triple the number of artifacts on display.
The museum houses one of the most substantial assortments of Ancient Egyptian and Nubian antiquities in the UK, displaying more than 16,000 artifacts dating back to between 5000 BC and 642AD.
The redevelopment will not only be limited to repairing old artifacts, but also to unveiling new valuable monuments to the public for the first time.
A new "Mummy Room" will put twice the number of the museum’s current collection of mummies on display; 12 mummies are set to be added.
“We’ve been doing a lot of work with the mummies collection over the last few years, and we have a lot more data now,” Ashley Cooke, the head of Antiquities and curator of Egyptology, told the Liverpool Echo during a recent interview.
“We want the public to interact with the artifacts, but also people’s lives. You can look on the faces of people who lived 2-3,000 years ago. We want to humanize the collection more,” said Cooke.
Both the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and the Wolfson Foundation put up a total of 300,000 pounds to improve the museum’s galleries.
Cooke also pointed out that the expansion will provide visitors with an unrivalled experience.
“We’re planning to double the space, or even increase that – we’re still in the design phase…the plans will also give more space around the objects, with better viewing opportunities and LED lighting, and improved environmental conditions.”
With the support of cutting edge technology, the new galleries will recount the intriguing story of how the Liverpool museum collected its treasures while aiming to revive the glory of the display that dimmed long ago, when the museum was victim to an incendiary bomb during World War II.
The decades-old musem will bring to life, employing animation techniques, a ‘Book of the Dead’; a 4-meter long papyrus roll that was found in the tomb of Djed-Hor, an ancient Egyptian pharaoh from the 30th Dynasty.
Some ancient Egyptian pieces will remain on display for visitors in one section of the museum while the Ancient Egypt galleries are being restored.
All photos are captured by James Maloney.