Mar 26 2019
Basrah Museum Galleries open 19 March 2019



The FOBM Trustees are delighted that the three new galleries - Sumer, Babylon and Assyria opened at the Basrah Museum on 19 March. This was made possible through the efforts of Qahtan Al Abeed and the Basrah Museum and Iraq Museum staff members. Two thousand new objects were sent from Baghdad, including some of the pieces from the original Basrah Museum, now installed in a special case in the Basrah Gallery.  The opening ceremony was attended by close to 600 people.  Qahtan Al Abeed, HE Qais Al Rasheed, Maysoon Al Damluji, John Curtis, Victoria Lindsay, Michael Townshend and Alice Walpole all delivered remarks before Qahtan invited guests to attend the cutting of the ribbon to declare the museum galleries fully open. Many of the speakers paid special  tribute to the efforts of Dr Lamia Al Gailani and a moments silence was held to honour her memory and all her efforts on the Basrah Museum project and for Iraqi archaeology.

The Friends of Basrah Museum Chairman Dr John Curtis is cutting the Ribbon with Maysoon Damluji while Qahtan Al Abeed holds the ribbon. The museum was packed with many visitors.

The Museum opening celebration  was followed the next day by a Museum Library workshop conducted by John Dolan OBE and Ayub Khan MBE, who will be assisting the Basrah Museum and the FOBM in establishing a library at the museum and working together on the project funded by the Cultural Protection Fund.

The Trustees wish to thank the State Board of Antiquities and Heritage and the Basrah Provincial Council and the Governor's office for their support on the project.

HWH & Associates and Bur Alaman Company have been invaluable corporate project partners for the project and ensuring the galleries were ready in time.

Mar 15 2019
Further CPF grant funding awarded for Basrah Museum Library & Resource Centre

The FOBM Trustees are delighted to announce further funding of just over £240,000 from the Cultural Protection Fund as an extension to the project work to establish a library and resource centre at the Basrah Museum. The funding also includes  the refurbishment of the library space, training opportunities, a backup power generator, security door and work on a new museum café as part of the grant extension.

The British Institute for the Study of Iraq (BISI) is a partner on this aspect of the project and two international consultants Ayub Khan FCLIP MBE and John Dolan OBE will be assisting the Basrah Museum and the FOBM to implement this aspect of the project during 2019. A library workshop discussion group is planned in March bringing together Basrah Museum staff and volunteers and local stakeholders with the FOBM consultants.

Feb 15 2019
Dr John Curtis elected new Chairman of Friends of Basrah Museum

The Trustees of the Friends of Basrah Museum have elected Dr John Curtis OBE, FBA as their new Chairman. Sir Terence Clark KBE, CMG, CVO,  who served in that role for almost ten years has stepped down but will remain a Trustee of the Charity.

His fellow Trustees thank him for his dedication in helping to found and lead the Charity over the past decade.

Jan 28 2019
The Friends of Basrah Museum and the British Institute for the Study of Iraq to arrange a memorial gathering

The Trustees of the Friends of Basrah Museum and the Council members of the British Institute for the Study of Iraq will be arranging a Memorial Gathering to honour Dr Lamia Al Gailani Werr at the British Academy in London over the coming months. 

There have been many tributes and obituaries. The NYT obituary can be read here.  Dr John Curtis has written an additional tribute on the History page of our website.

Jan 22 2019
Iraqi TV coverage of Dr Lamia Al Gailani's funeral and commentary in Arabic

Please find the following link to the TV footage on Iraqi TV to the comments on Dr Lamia Al Gailani-Werr  and her important role in Iraqi archaeology and heritage. HE Dr Abdulamir Al Hamdani, the new Minister of Culture, and Mr Qahtan Al Abeed, Director Basrah Antiquities and Heritage, are amongst those commenting. They were both close friends of Lamia's and this is a sad time for them personally and professionally. Her dear friend Maysoon Damluji MP, who appears in the photos below, was instrumental with the Ministry in arranging this fitting tribute to Lamia. On behalf of us all, we thank them for this important mark of respect.