May Half Term at Science and Industry Museum

Part of our Families guide

Shekina Rose, Families Editor
May Half Term at the science and industry museum
Image courtesy of Science and Industry Museum

May Half Term at Science and Industry Museum, Castlefield, 28 May–5 June 2022, free entry - Visit now

Head to the Science and Industry during May half term (Saturday 28 May to Sunday 5 June), for a week of fun, discovery and play, exploring the many ways in which Manchester has and continues to contribute to the past, present and future of transport.

Explore Manchester’s history of transport, and all the ways in which Manchester has kept the world in motion through history to present day. You will have the opportunity to get involved in immersive, entertaining activities, including creating fascinating gadgets and experiencing live science shows at some of the interactive demonstrations. The exhibition will also allow visitors to celebrate the creative aspects of transport, how it looks, and how we can propel transport quickly and effectively towards a greener, more environmentally friendly future.

Taking inspiration from Stephenson’s Rocket, an early locomotive that famously journeyed along the Liverpool and Manchester Railway, young engineers will have the opportunity to design, create and race their own dynamic vehicles, and there will be other opportunities to create moving machines while considering how to make them eco-friendly.

Throughout the visit, Museum Explainers will be available to help ignite curiosity and help you learn even more, with their short, engaging demonstrations designed to unravel scientific secrets.

Rebecca Gazey-McGaughey, Schools and Families Manager, said: “We can’t wait to get the fun rolling this half term at the Science and Industry Museum. Ever wondered how something as big as a plane can fly, how an engine powers a car, or even what would happen if you didn’t wear a suit in space? Come and join us to find out and get stuck into science with our programme of interactive activities.

“Transport is key to so many of the exciting stories we tell here at the museum, as well as to Manchester’s history as an industrial powerhouse. This makes it the perfect theme for our fun half-term activities, which will inspire the next generation of creative minds to think big.”

Moving forwards with the theme of transport, head to the whimsical world of marvellous machinery, displayed in ‘A Quiet Afternoon in the Cloud Cuckoo Valley’, the charming final work of one of Britain’s best loved artists and sculptors, Rowland Emett. Rowland is the creator of the inventions of ‘Caractacus Potts’ in the classic film, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. The display presents two scenes that tell the story of a journey aboard the imaginary ‘Far Tottering and Oyster Creek Railway.’ Expect to be mesmerised by the turning of cogs, and characters toasting teacakes and diving, while also gaining an understanding about what this fantastical sculpture has in common with the museum’s tremendous textiles machinery.

For the youngest visitors, there are regular interactive ‘story time’ sessions with the museum’s team of Explainers who will be reading Cleveland-Peck’s family-favourite, ‘You Can’t Take an Elephant on A Bus’. Under 5s can also borrow a Construction Packs containing a high-vis jacket, hard hat and wooden tools, to measure, bang and hammer your way through the museum.

Amazônia, a powerful new photography exhibition, takes you on a journey through the Brazilian rainforest, celebrating the country’s indigenous peoples and stunning landscapes. Other photography exhibitions include ‘100 Years of the BBC’, which celebrates Manchester as a centre of innovation in broadcasting, from the 1920s to the present.

The museum’s family-favourite Experiment Gallery has been revamped, as well as some of the old favourites (lifting a mini, watching your own skeleton ride a bicycle and much more), it and now features new interactive exhibitions, a heat vision thermal camera, magnetic art and a shadow wall.

Another old favourite to explore is the Revolution Manchester Gallery, where the city’s rich legacy of world-changing innovations is on display. See one of the first Rolls-Royce motorcars, thought to have been driven by Henry Royce himself. In the Textiles Gallery, explore how cotton transformed Manchester into an industrial powerhouse.

If you’re looking for a fun, educational day out with the whole family, head to the Science and Industry this half-term.

May Half Term at Science and Industry Museum, Castlefield

28 May–5 June 2022
Free entry

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