External Evaluation Consultant: Victory Gallery Redevelopment

The National Museum of the Royal Navy (NMRN) is looking for an evaluation consultant (or team of consultants) to help us effectively evaluate the success of and the impacts of the project to redevelop the Victory Gallery in Portsmouth Historic Dockyard.

1. Overview of the project

HMS Victory is the world’s most famous ship and single most important artefact for understanding the history of the Royal Navy. The ship’s significance is clear from its inclusion in the National Historic Fleet (Certificate 499), for which the entry reads:

‘HMS VICTORY is the oldest commissioned warship in the world and the only surviving First Rate Ship of the Line of the period. . . . HMS VICTORY represents the embodiment of British Naval mastery at its absolute height, when Britain’s supremacy over all her actual or potential enemies was unchallenged and the Royal Navy enjoyed supreme command of the world’s oceans. . . .As a result she is a national and international icon with a special place in the affection of the British people.’

The next decade is a key period in the 260 year long story of HMS Victory and her survival; 1922 is the centenary of Victory’s entry in No. 2 Dock and the start of restoration work. Over the next 12 years the HMS Victory Preservation Company (HMSVPCo) are grant funding a £35 million programme of conservation work to ensure the long-term preservation of the ship. This work will become yet more visible as the detailed restoration work begins to the ship itself. Throughout the period the NMRN wishes to share this developing story with our visitors and connect it to a re-telling of the long story of Victory’s construction, service and conservation.

To do this the HMSVPCo have provided a substantial grant for transforming our visitors’ experience within the ‘Sir Donald Gosling Victory Gallery’. This will become a distinctive and engaging new offer to visitors to Portsmouth Historic Dockyard.

Our intention is to create a Gallery that engages our target audiences, which include family visitors with children, older people visiting off peak and local people. To achieve this we will use an interpretative approach which helps visitors develop an emotional connection to the wider story of the ship.

2. Outcomes, objectives and key performance indicators

Our objectives are:

• To increase the number of visitors using the Victory Gallery
• To increase the percentage of visitors that visit both HMS Victory and the Victory Gallery
• To increase visitor satisfaction so that it is not less than 90%
• To increase visitors’ awareness of the story of Victory from its construction in 1759 to its conservation today.
• To increase visitors’ awareness that Victory is a living artefact and that its conservation will continue into the future.

We are structuring learning through the interpretation and displays through the Generic Learning Outcomes and will be mapping these closely with the designers. At this point the overall framework for this is as follows:

Knowledge and Understanding

• To increase understanding of Victory’s history
• To understand the many challenges to Victory’s long term survival
• To gain knowledge of the £35million restoration project and the archaeological approaches applied to Victory since 2012
• To discover the people behind the ship’s story and their continuing role in conserving the ship.


• To promote critical thinking – questioning, analysing, forming own opinion
• To promote Investigative skills – interpreting and comparing different types of evidence: documents, maps, images, film
• To encourage communication, literacy and listening skills
• To encourage social skills – sharing information, debating, finding out about each other’s viewpoints and promoting intergenerational learning
• To promote learning in different ways.

Attitudes and Values

• To challenge beliefs and accepted attitude/understanding of Victory
• To reflect on the meaning of ‘original’, better understanding of ‘significance’
• To reflect on ongoing importance of HMS Victory to the Royal Navy.

Enjoyment, Inspiration and Creativity

• To promote interaction with others – discussion and exchanging viewpoints
• To inspiring and provoke participation and creative responses
• To allow space for creative thinking and for audience to draw own conclusions
• To stimulate and surprise.

Activity Behaviour and Progression

• To encourage reflection
• To inspire the visitor to want to find out more about Victory’s history and the conservation challenges faced by the ship.
• To encourage people to visit other NMRN museums, special exhibitions, lectures or activities.

We also have a number of key performance indicators around the following:

• Health and safety
• Client team satisfaction
• Number of defects
• Out-turn time vs. planned time – overall
• Out-turn time vs planned time – milestone delivery
• Out-turn cost vs planned cost
• Completion documentation
• Feedback from peer reviews.

The targets and measures for these KPIs are yet to be defined, but will form an important yardstick in measuring the success of the project.

3. Audiences

The audiences for the project have been drawn from audience segmentation for Portsmouth Historic Dockyard as a whole, but have been focussed on three specific audience segments.

Fun experiences:

• They place greatest emphasis on having fun and tend to stick to places which they know or have this reputation, often being frequent visitors to zoos/safari parks and theme parks
• Working people, often from cities and large towns, with children, especially aged under 11.

Navy Pride:

• Core audience but limited growth. These are people interested in or with a personal connection to the Royal Navy.
Gentle Experiences
• Their attraction visits are about getting out and about, with visiting peaceful, relaxing environments important – often incorporating a visit to the café and shop. They are also immensely proud to be British
• Well represented within the local market. Often older with a large segment aged 65+, therefore likely to be retired and have grandchildren.

4. Approaches to evaluation

Evaluation will enable NMRN to reflect and learn lessons for the project.

The external evaluator will:

• Provide objectivity and independence
• Provide expert skills to the project during summative evaluation
• Create a framework for the evaluation including agreement on who will gather data
• Manage the summative evaluation including data analysis and interpretation which will synthesize data from all outcome areas of the project
• Analyse data from across the project and produce an independent report with clear practical recommendations and lessons learnt
• Assist with evidence-based advocacy using the evaluation results.

5. Key considerations for the project

A number of key considerations must be taken into account when conducting project monitoring and evaluation.

Providing capacity and skills - Identifying where the gaps concerning evaluation are and assisting the project team in filling these gaps.

Demonstration of long-term benefits – The evaluation needs to demonstrate clearly what has been achieved throughout the project, and what lasting benefits have resulted from the project. The project should have long term related to the successful delivery of the mission and vision for NMRN. It is therefore instrumental that the long-term benefits and impacts are recorded well in the evaluation. Qualitative evaluation will be especially useful in demonstrating these long-term benefits, and the evaluation tools and methods will reflect this.

Evaluating the decision making process and lessons learned – This is a very fast paced project and therefore, it is key that we effectively implement lessons learned from previous projects and work efficiently. 

Balancing breadth, depth and quality - If the full story of the project is to be told and the full extent of its impacts understood, evaluation techniques must be planned that will provide both quantitative and qualitative data as appropriate.

6. What we’re looking for:

We are looking for a consultant (or team of consultants) to collaborate with our internal team to ensure a robust and effective evaluation for the project. We’re looking for a consultant or a team of consultants with skills and experience in the areas of:

• Desk based research including synthesis of data from a range of data sources
• Effective measurement of the success of a project using a range of evaluation techniques
• An ability to grasp the key issues quickly and work effectively short time frames
• Report writing to a high standard
• A pragmatic approach that can prioritise and assist with data capture in a short time frame
• Experience of evaluating capital projects.

Outlined below is a summary of work expected from the Evaluation Consultant/s for the evaluation process.

Start up

•Production of an evaluation schedule and framework.

Data collection

• Practical assistance with data collection and analysis where necessary.

Summative evaluation:

• Produce a written report interpreting monitoring and evaluation data from across the project.

7. Evaluation timescale

22 August 2019 Evaluation brief issued
13 September 2019 Deadline for return
20 September 2019 Consultants appointed
October 2019 Project start-up
October 2019 Evaluation schedule and framework produced and desk based appraisal
October 2019-September 2020 Data gathering
September 2020 Summative report completed,

8. Budgets

The evaluation budget for this project is up to £7,000 exclusive of VAT but including all materials and expenses.

9. Submission process

Submissions should include:

• A proposal outlining how the consultant(s) would approach the project, engagement with the internal project team and key milestones
• A budget breakdown
• Confirmation of ability to work within the project timescale
• Examples of past evaluations you have carried out
• Two client referees
• CVs for all consultants and associated who would be involved in the project evaluation
• Details of how risks to the project caused by inability to work of the lead consultants could be managed.

10. Scoring

We will score submissions using the following criteria and weighting:
• An exciting project proposal that includes all elements of the brief and meets our aspirations for the evaluation and legacy planning processes. 35%
• Value for Money 25%
• Relevant experience 25%
• Feasibility of proposal in relation to timescale 10%
• Risk management 5%.

The consultant/s should send their submission by the deadline of 13 September to:

Trudie Cole
C/O NMRN Museum
HM Naval Base (PP66)

Or emailed to: trudie.cole@nmrn.org.uk

A decision on the awarding of the contract will be made based on the written submissions. Where difficulty is found in selecting the contractor, short-listed consultants may be invited to interview. If so, they will be given 48 hours’ notice.

HMS Hermes returning from the Falklands