Award will contribute towards £9.9m development of East End gallery.

The Heritage Lottery Fund has awarded £3.36m towards the development of the Whitechapel Gallery.

The £9.9m development, due to open by 2008, will almost double gallery space and triple capacity. The plans also include a street level restaurant, an expanded bookshop and an improvement in disabled access.

The Heritage Lottery Fund director, Carole Souter, said, “Our support has set this wonderful gallery on the path towards expansion. It’s a great example of how lottery players’ money can transform the cultural landscape of the UK and help put heritage at the heart of regeneration.”

Meanwhile work will start next month at the Museum of Childhood in Bethnal Green, which received £3.5m from the lottery fund to pay for the second stage of its masterplan. The development comprises new entrance hall, learning centre, galleries and a glass lift. The scheme is due to completion by January 2007.

Those two projects are part of ambitious regeneration schemes for East London, which also feature the Rich Mix Cultural Foundation, an international art, education and heritage centre, designed by Penoyre & Prasad Architects, which will open this year.