The Shipping Gallery was one of the most popular galleries in the museum before the Blitz. The collection of models grew very quickly and as a result they were displayed in cases that were tightly packed together, so as many as possible could be put on display.
Although many of the models were evacuated before the bombing, some stayed on display. On 3 May 1941 the Shipping Gallery was saved from the fire. However the Shipp Gallery was in the Upper Horseshoe gallery. This suffered a great deal of damaged not only when the roof of the museum collapsed but also from the flooding caused by the hosepipes.
Ship models only recently collected by the curators for the museum’s popular displays were destroyed; including a model of a life boat used in New Brighton called the William and Kate Johnston, which had arrived into the collection in 1936.
In some cases replacement models were made in order to rebuild the collections. The makers of the original boats destroyed during the Blitz were approached to build those new models. This is the case with the model for the RNLI life boat Civil Service No 5, which was made by George B McGraw who had originally built the William and Kate Johnson model.