2014 marks the 100th anniversary of the start of the First World War, and to commemorate the occasion London’s Imperial War Museum will be hosting a range of brand new displays that tell the story of what came to be known as the Great War.
The First World War Galleries will be open from January, and are set to feature a host of genuine artefacts including weapons, uniforms, photographs and even letter and diaries written by soldiers.
The display will be comprised of a total of 14 sections, with the Life at the Front gallery providing visitors with the chance to experience what conditions were like for soldiers on the battlefield. This will be achieved via a fantastic interactive display, which includes a recreated trench, complete with a soundscape that mirrors the constant noise of shelling, shouting and general action that would have been ringing in soldiers’ ears.
A genuine Mark V tank and Sopwith Camel plane will be on show as part of the Life on the Front exhibit, while a range of other World War I vehicles can be found dotted around the museum.
The overall aim of the project is to provide visitors with a greater insight as to how and why the First World War escalated into such a gruelling and tragic conflict, giving information about the many factors that led to its beginning and which prolonged it.
On top of this, organisers hope visitors will come away with a greater appreciation of the mental and emotional reality of life for soldiers in combat, which is why the First World War Galleries will also feature two atmospheric reflection areas, whereby a range of sounds and objects are used to encourage people to think about aspects such the act of killing and the fear of being killed.
The Imperial War Museum is located in Lambeth in south-east London, and entry to the First Word War Galleries is free.