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Victoria & Albert Museum

V&A British Galleries delay

£12 million required to complete refurbishment project.

The Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A) now faces the challenge of raising partnership funds for its new British Galleries. On 22 July the Heritage Lottery Fund announced an award of £15 million towards the £31 million project. The V&A had applied for £22.5 million, but increasing pressure on Lottery money meant that the offer had to be reduced. In July 1997 the Heritage Lottery Fund had provided an initial £1 million towards development costs and a further £3 million has already been given by private donors. This means that the V&A now needs to find another £12 million. Despite the sum required, a museum spokesman said she was “fully confident” that the money would be raised. The old British Galleries closed on 31 July and the 3,000 objects on show were removed. On 31 October a small temporary display will be opened, showing highlights from the collection. Due to open in 2001, the new galleries are being described as “the most important project undertaken at the V&A during the last hundred years”.