This DCMS-funded project reinterprets Flamsteed House, a Scheduled Ancient Monument and once home to the Astronomers Royal, into a rich, domestic setting, telling the stories of the Astronomers’ families who lived successively there for nearly 300 years. Rooms are brought to life by furnishing them with barrier-free arrangements and touch objects, creating the atmosphere of a lived-in space that encourages visitors to inquire and explore. The interpretation is not merely visual, but tells the story of past inhabitants by appealing to all of the senses.
In such a prestigious setting, the insertion of new exhibition elements required delicate and deliberate thinking, to question and understand the appropriateness of each element, so that the overall design is neither pastiche nor ignorant. Due to the precious historic fabric of the rooms, the design required some ingenuity to create a display that is both respectful of the existing, but also has the appearance and quality of a permanent gallery.