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The museum is currently housed in the fine building by the Victorian architect Charles Cockerell. The space planned for redevelopment is at the back of the museum, areas not designed by Cockerell which were erected at the end of the 19th century as temporary display galleries and offices.

The first plans for the project have been drawn up by Rick Mather Architects with – funds permitting – the possibility of work commencing in February 2005 and completion by the summer of 2008.