The Royal Marines were formed in 1664 and the museum charts their history and is housed in the Victorian (grade II listed building) formerly Eastney Barracks on the seafront in Eastney. The museum is in the original officers quarters of the barracks with the Marines quarters now being apartments.
The museum is near the eastern end of Portsmouth seafront and is well worth a visit. The museum includes a Falklands video display telling the marines story during the Falklands War. The museum is the guardian of all ten Victoria Crosses awarded to the Royal Marines. Along with these there is a display of many of the other medals awarded to the Royal Marines. There is a video show on the D-Day landings along with many new sections and other videos.
Not only do the displays tell the history of the Royal Marines but the buildings too have a story to tell. The displays include the story of Hannah Snell a women who ran off to sea in 1745 disguised as a male Marine and is brought to life by a 3D state-of-the-art display. If you would like to find out more about Hannah Snell's life why not look at http://www.users.bigpond.com/ShipStreetPress/Snell/index.htm , it is well worth a look. The full-dress uniform of Louis Mountbatten is on display along with many tableaus depicting Royal Marine events. There is also a section about the Royal Marine Band who are still based in Portsmouth. The Museum has a friendly and welcoming atmosphere and the curators are able to help with a wide range of enquiries.
The Museum has a shop containing a wide range of souvenirs from pens and pencils to DVDs and CDs of the Marines. There is also a restaurant which serves a variety of meals throughout the day. If travelling to the Royal Marine Museum by car there is a large car park in the grounds. The displays inside the museum include badges and insignia, uniforms, arctic snow-hole, 1664 to 1793 display, colours hall, 1793 to 1899, the Marines in the 20th century, a picture and silver gallery, RM Band display, Medals and D-Day Exhibition Hall. There is also a making of the Royal Marines Commando exhibition and the museum also features a special exhibitions areas which opened hosting Return to Helmand.
Throughout the museum there are many videos to watch and sound clips to listen to. There are also many interactive exhibits including computer terminals. The above picture is of the Royal Marine Museum taken from within its grounds. Why not pay them a visit there is plenty to keep you entertained.
Work started on the construction of the barracks to house the Royal Marine Artillery in 1862. In the move to Eastney, the musketry and gunnery training fields were retained while the large parade ground and eventually a gymnasium, theatre and drill shed, made the division self contained. It was not until 1867 that the whole division was in the Barracks and not until 1868 that the officers quarters were completed. When in 1923 the RMLI and RMA amalgamated Eastney became home of the Portsmouth Division. The barracks are now apartments with the officers quarters being the Royal Marines Museum, although the marines and School Of Music are still based in Portsmouth. There is a site about the Royal Marines in 1805 at www.hms.org.uk.
The Royal Marines have got a Bands Service which the museum also features displays on. The Royal Marines Museum has recently added many new displays and attractions. The museum now offers interactive computer terminals, life size models, many pictures and a vast number of video displays. This museum is located in some nice grounds and is well worth a visit if you are in Portsmouth.
The Royal Marines have got a web site at www.royal-marines.mod.uk which you could look at for information about the Royal Marines.
The Royal Marines Museum closed its galleries on 1st April 2017 in preparation for its move to Portsmouth Historic Dockyard.