Presenting the powerful story of a formidable British invention
PLB was commissioned to develop an engaging and accessible scheme for the Tank Museum. We were tasked with achieving the museum’s vision of becoming a world-class, standalone destination for people to explore the development of armoured fighting vehicles.
As well as taking on creative, strategic and organisational roles, we were brought in to work with the project team to secure a successful National Lottery Heritage Fund bid, and a £15.4 million redevelopment budget.
It was time for us to step in and create something special for this prestigious venue.
Bringing the story to life
We headed up the redevelopment and reinterpretation of the museum and its designated collections, significantly expanding the museum’s offering to visitors, as well as increasing access to the collections.
We also coordinated the team of specialist suppliers during the delivery phase. This included the installation of a specialist turntable for the first ever tank, ‘Little Willie’, as well as numerous bespoke AV displays, digital and physical interactive points, and thematic backdrops.
Our work with the Tank Museum included:
- Interpretive planning and design, to develop all the themes, messages and stories that the museum wanted to convey to visitors
- Audience consultation and focus groups, to ensure a connection with the wide array of audiences that the Tank Museum wants to attract
- Liaison with project managers and project architects, working closely with all personnel to ensure every aspect of the project was delivered on time, to spec and within budget
- Exhibition and graphic design, to bring together all the visual elements of the museum using references from modern and historic archives
- Exhibition specification, showcase production and specialist displays, to present items clearly, securely and appropriately, conveying the story of armoured fighting vehicles in meaningful ways and sparking the imagination of visitors, including the installation of a WW1 tank turntable
- Research and scriptwriting, to create human connections, inspire action and build narratives around the vehicles, collections and surroundings
- Illustration and picture acquisition, to build substance and flesh out the diverse stories of the tank corps
- Audio visual briefs and hardware specification, to immerse visitors in the ambience of the museum, spark imaginations and build connections
Delivering a strong performance
The stunning new 4,000m2 building now showcases 35 key vehicles from the museum’s collection, along with 148 tanks, displayed in the discovery centre. It has outperformed all predicted visitor figures, and PLB is proud to have played a key role in delivering this next phase of innovation for the museum.
Visitors can discover:
The Tank Story, a chronological exploration of the technological development of tanks and armoured manoeuvre warfare, set within social and historical context. The stories of the people involved, including soldiers, civilians, politicians and designers, are all revealed in audiovisual and archive imagery.
The Discovery Centre, an interactive experience showcasing the finest collection of tanks in the world.
The Trench Experience, an immersive explanation of the first use of tanks in France in 1916. Museum visitors can follow journey taken by soldiers, from the recruiting office to the frontline.
Take a closer look at what we achieved by visiting the Tank Museum website.