Science and Industry Museum, Liverpool Road, Manchester, M3 4FP – Visit Now
The Science and Industry Museum’s reopening has brought with it an exciting new programme of events and exhibitions to take us through 2021 and beyond. It also marks the launch of a brand new Special Exhibitions Gallery – part of a multi-million-pound restoration programme currently underway at the globally significant industrial heritage site, which will reveal new spaces and perspectives for all visitors to enjoy, play and learn in. Don’t worry though, a bit of scaffolding aside, the venue is very much open, and bursting at the seams with fascinating things to explore.
In the Temporary Exhibition Gallery currently you’ll find Use Hearing Protection: The Early Years of Factory Records – an exhibition that tells the story of Factory Records’ formative years from 1978-1982, when the label made waves with its innovative work in music, technology and design. It houses the first 50 artefacts from the official Factory catalogue, including creations from Joy Division, New Order and The Durutti Column, as well as graphic designs by Peter Saville. It also offers a glimpse of previously unseen items from the Factory archives, including objects loaned from the estates of both Tony Wilson and Rob Gretton, the former manager of Joy Division and New Order.
This follows a popular exhibition in the Special Exhibitions Gallery, Top Secret: From ciphers to cyber security, which came to a close at the end of August. From Alan Turing and his team of codebreakers at Bletchley Park, to one of the most successful Soviet spy rings in Cold War Britain, to modern-day cyber-crime, Top Secret explored over a century’s worth of communications intelligence through hand-written documents, declassified files and incredible artefacts from GCHQ’s and the Science Museum Group’s historic collections.
Don’t worry if you missed out on that; there’s a new temporary exhibition in the works, and it’s free to visit. From 22 October, Cancer Revolution: Science, innovation and hope will explore the revolution in science that is transforming cancer care. From busting myths about the causes of cancer and revealing how the disease isn’t unique to humans, to exploring how the latest cancer science, early detection technologies and immunotherapies are advancing cancer care today, the exhibition will illuminate how far we have come in prevention, detection and treatment, while highlighting the important challenges that are still to be solved.
All this in addition to the sprawling Revolution Manchester Gallery, where you can explore Manchester’s rich legacy of innovations, discoveries and ideas that changed the world, the Textiles Gallery, where you can find out how the city’s heritage is interwoven with the cotton industry, and the Experiment Gallery, where the whole family can get hands-on and see science brought to life. All housed within the Grade II listed New Warehouse, with the option of stepping out into the cobbled Upper Yard to enjoy a beautiful new garden and uncover stories of the historic site.
The Science and Industry Museum’s collection spans 250 years of discoveries and innovations that began in Manchester – and went on to change the world. The globally significant site comprises six listed buildings (two Grade I and four Grade II). The museum found its permanent home in the former Liverpool Road Station – the site of the original terminus of the world’s first inter-city railway – in 1983, having outgrown its temporary premises on Grosvenor Street in Chorlton-on-Medlock (the North Western Museum of Science and Industry first opened in 1969).
The Science and Industry Museum’s collection spans 250 years of discoveries and innovations that began in Manchester – and went on to change the world
Visits to this must-see destination are limited to advance bookings only for the time being, and opening times are pared back to Wednesday to Sunday, 10am to 5pm. These new times are expected to be in place until April 2022, although it will be open every day of the week during the school holidays. You can also expect a reassuring increase in safety measures to protect visitors, such as hand sanitiser available at regular locations through the venue, clear signage to aid people on their visit, recommended routes and greatly enhanced cleaning measures to ensure risks are kept to an absolute minimum. This also means there will be a maximum number of visitors allowed per day, so be sure to book well in advance.
The on-site shop and café are fully open again, with the latter now using sustainable disposable materials rather than crockery. And picnic areas will also be provided for those (alas increasingly rare) sunny days.
For more information about any of the above, visit the venue’s website at the link below.
The museum is currently open from Wednesday – Sunday, 10.00–17.00 during term time and Monday – Sunday, 10.00–17.00 during school holidays.
Services and FacilitiesExhibits, special events and exhibitions, archive, cafe, bistro and shop
AccessibilityWheelchair access to all public areas
Commercial and hire servicesAvailable for meetings, conferences, events, weddings