Orford Ness National Nature Reserve was a top-secret, military site for much of the 20th Century.
National Trust commissioned Ugly Studios to
design an exhibition about the Ness’ hidden past.
To add to the challenge, the site is only
accessible by boat, and the displays have to be able to survive the occasional flood!
This exhibition is both a celebration of British inventiveness and a reflection on the horrors of war. Wherever possible it uses the words of former staff and archive photographs to tell the story. These recollections are set alongside a timeline of world events from World War One through to the Cold War.
The graphic displays were designed to look practical and pragmatic, made from scaffolding and wood. They are augmented by low-tech models and interactives and a range of objects that even includes an inert nuclear bomb. Supporting video content can be watched on smart phones or tablets.
The National Trust use the exhibiton as an introduction to the site. The exhibition has been really well received by the public. Visitors have commented on the 'sympathetic, sophisticated and atmospheric' treatment of the story.