David Livingstone Centre

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Shuttle Row, Livingstone's birthplace and childhood home, is the Centre's museum. It opened in 1927.
Livingstone and the Lion bronze by Ray Harryhausen and Gareth Knowles in the gardens of the centre

The David Livingstone Centre is a biographical museum in Blantyre, South Lanarkshire, Scotland, dedicated to the life and work of the explorer and missionary David Livingstone. The centre is operated by the David Livingstone Trust and is housed in a category A listed building.[1]

It is located in the former mill buildings which once housed 24 families including Livingstone's, and where he was born on 19 March 1813. The centre depicts Livingstone's life from his early childhood working in the mill, to his African explorations. These are illustrated with the aid of various pieces of his navigational and medical equipment, interspersed with African artefacts.[2][3]


A committee to promote the creation of a Scottish National Memorial to David Livingstone was established in 1925 and the tenement in which Livingstone was born was acquired in 1927. In 1926, the architect and town planner Sir Frank Mears was engaged to oversee the development of the project. Pilkington Jackson was commissioned to sculpt the several bronze tableaux depicting the life of Livingstone and a World Fountain in the Memorial grounds.[4]

The Centre is now operated by the David Livingstone Trust, as of April 2017. The Trust have been successful in getting a £6.3 million grant for the refurbishment of the museum, collection and African Pavilion building. Further information on the transformative Birthplace Project is on their website. [5] It is expected to commence in 2018 and the project has been funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, Historic Environment Scotland and Scottish Government.


  1. ^ "Scottish National Memorial To David Livingstone: Listed Building Report". Historic Scotland.
  2. ^ "'Priceless' Spear Stolen from Museum". BBC News. 8 December 1999. Retrieved 26 March 2008.
  3. ^ "Dr Livingstone's Spear, I Presume". BBC News. 10 December 1999. Retrieved 26 March 2008.
  4. ^ MacNair, James I. (1951), The Story of the Scottish National Memorial to David Livingstone, The Scottish National Memorial to David Livingstone Trust, Blantyre
  5. ^ https://www.david-livingstone-trust.org/birthplace-project

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 55°48′08″N 4°05′02″W / 55.80223°N 4.08385°W / 55.80223; -4.08385