Ras Al Khaimah 2018 | TOURISM | COLUMN

TBY talks to Catherine Ayres Director of Museums, Department of Antiquities and Museums, National Museum of Ras Al Khaimah, on the sector.

Catherine Ayres

What is the history of the museum?

The National Museum of RAK is housed in an historic fort built between 1809 and 1820 to defend against the British army. Over the years, its function has changed dramatically. From the 1920s to the 1960s, it was home to the ruling Al Qasimi family and where the current Ruler, Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi, spent his childhood. When the family moved, it became a police station, and then, in 1987, it opened as a museum. Our challenge now is to turn a 19th century fort into a 21st century museum.

What is the next phase of the restoration process?

We are about to embark on the next stage, where we will weave all the magnificent artifacts into a story that tells the diverse history of the Emirate, for example, chronological galleries and thematic exhibitions. The plan is to accomplish the full Masterplan by National Day 2021, the UAE's 50th anniversary.