Hull museums and art gallery to welcome millionth visitor this year

Ferens Art Gallery, Hull Museums and Hull History Centre will welcome their one-millionth visitor on Wednesday 30 August, just eight months into UK City of Culture, making it the busiest year for the service since records began in 1960.

Since 1 January 2017 the attractions have delivered a strong and diverse cultural and visual arts programme and exceeded all expectations, attracting unprecedented visitor numbers during 2017.

The busiest day on record was 21 January 2017 with 12,805 visits to all the museums and art gallery, and coincides with the opening of the Francis Bacon and Open Exhibition on display at Ferens Art Gallery. The busiest day at a single site was Saturday 14 January 2017, the first day Ferens Art Gallery was open with 6,215 visits, following a £5.2m refurbishment. The gallery also attracted 175,793 visits between 22 April and 13 August whilst the SKIN exhibition, featuring works by world renowned artists Spencer Tunick, Ron Mueck and Lucian Freud, was on display.

Councillor Terry Geraghty, Hull City Council Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Tourism and Chair of Hull Culture & Leisure Limited, said: “We are delighted that such large numbers of people have visited our museums and art gallery during our year as UK City of Culture. It had been widely anticipated that the figure of one million would be achieved by the end of 2017 but delivering the result four months ahead of schedule is testament to the amount of interest in Hull during 2017.We look forward to giving a warm welcome to the visitors who will come to enjoy themselves for the remainder of 2017 and in years to come. There’s always something new to experience and of course admission is free providing a great value experience for visitors from near and far, making a significant economic impact in the city that supports jobs and businesses.

“Reaching 1,000,000 visitors in just eight months acknowledges the quality programme of exhibitions and events developed and delivered by our superb staff during 2017 and has been made possible by working with our partners including the National Gallery, Tate and The Royal Collection to name a few.

“It is also incredibly exciting to receive so many visitors ahead of one of the world’s most renowned art prizes – the Turner Prize, one of the major highlights in the 2017 calendar, when we anticipate more visitors to the Ferens Art Gallery.

“We are committed to offering residents and visitors alike the opportunity to experience our fantastic art gallery, Hull History Centre and the museums, with thousands of artefacts, collections and world renowned art, and with free admission, there is definitely something for everyone.

“Our teams are busy planning the future programme and have some exciting new developments in the pipeline, which we hope will attract even more visitors in the future.”

There is also so much more to come including:
• Bill Bailey Cabinet of Curiosities: on display at Hull Maritime Museum until 10 September
• Francis Bacon: an intimate portrait with Michael Peppiatt, a close friend of Francis Bacon will give a special unique talk on 7 September, 6pm at Ferens Art Gallery
• Big Bus Day, this popular family fun event on Saturday 9 September at Hull’s Streetlife Museum of Transport offers lots of bus-related fun celebrating Hull’s transport heritage, including a display of vintage and modern buses.
• The Turner Prize, the prestigious contemporary art award will be on display at Ferens Art Gallery between Tuesday 26 September and Sunday 7 January 2018
• Turner and the Whale, this exhibition at Hull Maritime Museum between 7 October – 7 January 2017 focuses on four paintings by J.M.W Turner, on loan from the Tate’s national collection with three rare whaling scenes and one maritime scene, displayed alongside Hull’s own whaling art, offering a unique insight into both Turner’s work and Hull’s finest artists
• Hull Maritime Museums goes to the movies – films with a nautical theme, including Finding Nemo, Little Mermaid and Mutiny on the Bounty, will be shown in the Court Room between 21 – 27 October
• October half-term events between Saturday 28 October and Sunday 5 November
• Christmas Extravaganza in the Museums Quarter – on 25 November