Annual reviews

The blue whale in Hintze Hall

Never has our vision of a future where people and the planet thrive been more relevant.

We have launched a new strategy to 2031, in which we set out a plan to create advocates for the planet. We're already making progress.

Read the Museum's 2020 review (PDF).

Highlights to April 2020 include:

  • Total attendance at our South Kensington and Tring sites reached 5.3 million.
  • We were successful in our Budget bid for £180 million to build a new science and digitisation centre on the science and innovation campus at Harwell.
  • Work continues on the Urban Nature Project, placing our response to the challenges faced by biodiversity in our towns and cities at the heart of our future plans.
  • Luke Jerram's Museum of the Moon art installation was seen by more than 2 million visitors during its run from 17 May 2019 to 5 January 2020. Our Ice Rink saw its highest visitor numbers in its 15-year history with 221,189 skaters, and Wildlife Photographer of the Year was seen by 129,778 people.
  • Over the course of 2019, scientists in the Museum described 412 new species.
  • Our Royal Patron, HRH The Duchess of Cambridge, visited the Angela Marmont Centre for UK Biodiversity in October 2019 to hear how staff are working to protect threatened UK wildlife.
  • A project to sequence the genome of every animal, plant, fungus and protozoan in the UK received £9.4 million from the Wellcome Sanger Institute for its first phase. The Darwin Tree of Life Project will sequence DNA of 66,000 species, bringing invaluable new insights into their evolution, their future, and their possible use for biomedicine.
  • As part of European Researchers' Night, we ran an evening of events celebrating the global network of scientists that work together to deepen our understanding of Earth. World Wild Webs: Our Interconnected Planet, was a free festival of science, where more than 150 experts explored networks in nature.
  • Touring exhibitions reached 3 million people across 13 countries.
  • We had 14 million website visits, up 6% from last year, with total page views reaching 34 million.
  • Dippy on Tour welcomed visitors in Rochdale, Cardiff and Newcastle.