About the National Army Museum

The National Army Museum is a leading authority on the British Army and its impact on society past and present. The Museum examines the Army’s role as protector, aggressor and peacekeeper from the British Civil Wars to the modern day.

The Museum, first housed at the military academy at Sandhurst, opened in 1971 next door to the Chelsea pensioners in London. Despite repeated efforts to extend and improve it, the building had dark confusing interiors and didn’t allow for a dynamic and engaging museum. The 2017 redevelopment, which was partly paid for by a Heritage Lottery Fund grant of £11.5m, has transformed the Museum, giving it a front door directly on to the road and new galleries around an airy atrium. Formally opened by Her Majesty The Queen in March 2017, the reinvention of the Museum was described by the Telegraph as a ‘thought-provoking triumph’.

What we did for them

We were appointed by the Museum in August 2015 to put a robust strategy in place to enable them to complete their capital appeal for their major £23.75 million redevelopment project. IFC identified the issues that were preventing the successful conclusion of the appeal and looked at where the opportunities lay to build strong relationships with potential donors.

We worked with the Museum staff and trustees to establish a strategic fundraising plan to enable the final £1 million to be raised over a twelve-month period.

IFC was then appointed to oversee the fundraising campaign during this twelve-month period and assigned a senior consultant to work as Appeal Director at the Museum. A target of £1 million had been set for the capital appeal, to be raised in the 12 months from September 2015. The target was exceeded and by September 2016 £1,503,729 had been raised in donations and pledges.

IFC was also appointed to assist with providing an innovative approach to individual giving when the Museum reopened in April 2017. We worked with the Museum to provide an interactive contactless donation system. The screen is able to recognise the donor walking towards it and engages with the visitor asking for a gift. With a simple tap of the donor’s bank card a person on a giant TV screen will interact with the donor, thanking them and explaining the impact of their donation.

“Sarah Gray worked as Appeal Director for the National Army Museum from September 2015 to October 2016. The target of the appeal was £1m and during that period the Museum successfully raised over £1.5m in donations and pledges.

Sarah hit the ground running; very quickly picked up all aspects of the Museum’s appeal, stakeholders, contacts and fundraising opportunities; developed a one-year programme and organised a number of high profile events as well as a number of grant applications in order to secure the funds required.

She worked extremely well with an appeal group drawn from the Museum’s governing committee and developed excellent working relations with all of the individuals with whom she had contact. She inspired great confidence in those she worked with and was entirely professional throughout in her approach to individuals and organisations. I would wholeheartedly recommend Sarah to any organisation that is looking to take her on in either a short term or long term capacity.”

Janice Murray, Director General, National Army Museum