Brian Moseley, Plymouth
Webpage created: May 14, 2020
Webpage updated: May 14, 2020




Thanks to Plymouth's long association with the Marine Biological Association, whose laboratory and aquarium on Plymouth Hoe were opened in 1888, the City now hosts the National Marine Aquarium on the Sutton Harbour Fish Quay at Coxside.

In 1988 the Marine Biological Association started a thorough investigation of the existing aquarium facilities as a result of which the Curator, Doctor Geoffrey Potts, recommended  that they construct a completely new aquarium on a different site, built to world-class standards and using the most modern technology and materials.

Luckily, this coincided with the British Government's desire to regenerate the Coxside and Cattedown areas so once the design and funding were in place, partly supported by the British Government and the European Community, work started on the site at alongside Sutton Harbour in November 1996.  It was designed by Messrs Lacey Hickie Caley Architects.

The National Marine Aquarium was opened to the public in May 1998.  The displays were themed to run from "Moorland Stream" at the top of the building down the river to the sea and the "Shark Theatre".

An extension was opened in 2002.