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Tate Liverpool receives £1.25m towards gallery transformation from Wolfson Foundation.

Tate Liverpool today announced it will receive a £1.25m grant from the Wolfson Foundation towards the major reimagining of the landmark gallery on Royal Albert Dock. Designed by 6a architectsthe £29.75 million redevelopment will transform one of the UK’s most important spaces for modern and contemporary art.

Preliminary designs for Tate Liverpool EXT Hartley Bridge © 6a architects

The Wolfson Foundation has a long history with Tate and was an instrumental funder to the establishment of Tate Liverpool, and the ground floor exhibition space at the Royal Albert Dock venue had been named the Wolfson Gallery in acknowledgement of this early commitment. The Foundation has now pledged further funding to take the institution into the next phase of its life and reaffirm its earlier commitment to underpin the success of Tate as a pioneer for arts-led regeneration in the UK.

Paul Ramsbottom, Chief Executive of the Wolfson Foundation, said:

The Wolfson Foundation was happy to support the creation of Tate Liverpool in the 1980s. This latest transformation will significantly improve the gallery spaces, allowing improved access to remarkable art. It will help engage new audiences from Liverpool and beyond, and will form a crucial part of a reinvigorated Waterfront. We are delighted to continue our involvement with Tate.

Preliminary designs for Tate Liverpool Cutaway © 6a architects

Helen Legg, Director of Tate Liverpool, said:

We’re grateful to the Wolfson Foundation for this investment which brings us a step closer to realising our ambitions. Tate has a proud history with the Foundation and I’m delighted that this funding will help us to deliver a once-in-a-generation renewal of Tate Liverpool. The Wolfson Foundation’s support will enable us to become an art museum fit for the 21st century, serving the needs of artists and audiences, now and into the future.

The upcoming transformation of Tate Liverpool will reimagine the gallery to meet the scale and ambition of today’s most exciting artists and to welcome visitors into a brand-new museum environment. The designs include a new public ‘Art Hall’ on the ground floor, opened up to admit daylight and views across the historic dock. New gallery spaces over three floors will showcase the incredible diversity of Tate’s collection and are interspersed with public riverside foyers. Opening up the gallery’s façade will increase its visibility on the waterfront and within the Royal Albert Dock, creating an inviting destination with striking spaces for learning, play and relaxation.

Environmental standards and thermal performance will be significantly improved with new services replacing fossil fuel, with renewables and natural ventilation introduced to the building to ensure better energy performance.

Liverpool City Council granted planning permission and listed building consent for the project in October 2023 and construction will commence early this year.

Funding for the £29.7 million project has come from the UK Government, including £10m from the Levelling Up Fund, as part of a successful combined £20m bid with National Museums Liverpool, and £6.6m from the DCMS Public Bodies Infrastructure Fund. The Liverpool City Region Combined Authority also awarded funding for the developmental phase of the project via its Strategic Investment Fund.


Envisaged as a flagship for making the national collection of art accessible to more people, Tate Liverpool’s impact and ambition has continued to grow since its conception 35 years ago.

Since 2019, the gallery has shown work by ground-breaking US contemporary artists Theaster Gates and Arthur Jafa and staged the first major exhibition in the UK of artist and activist Keith Haring as well as of the first UK retrospective of Lucy McKenzie and the first UK solo display of Swiss-Argentine artist Vivian Suter. More recently, Tate Liverpool responded to COVID-19 with an exhibition of portraits, created by Aliza Nisenbaum, depicting NHS staff from Merseyside, and hosted the Turner Prize 2022. Alongside its inspiring exhibition programme, the gallery has an established reputation for delivering high-quality work within the city’s communities. Projects such as Tackling the Blues, Home from Home and ground-breaking work with prison education service Novus, see Tate Liverpool engaged in a range of initiatives to support skills and promote creativity, extending its influence beyond the walls of the gallery.

The Wolfson Foundation is an independent charity with a focus on research and education. Its aim is to support civil society by investing in excellent projects in science, health, heritage, humanities and the arts. Since it was established in 1955, some £1 billion (£2 billion in real terms) has been awarded to more than 12,000 projects throughout the UK, all on the basis of expert review. Twitter: @wolfsonfdn



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