Science and Industry Museum
Much like the once mighty industrial power of the North, Manchester’s Science and Industry Museum has shrunk noticeably over the years. But it’s still well worth a visit.
The Air and Space Hall closed permanently in 2021. And the Power Hall and the 1830 station are both temporarily closed while a multimillion-pound restoration project takes place. The Power Hall at least will be back, hissing steam engines and all, with an expected reopening of 2023.
In the meantime, the action is confined to the 1830 Warehouse. Its first gallery, Revolution Manchester, focuses on innovations developed in Manchester that have changed the world. Head here to see the 1905 Rolls-Royce motor car used by Henry Royce himself, and a working replica of ‘Baby’, the Manchester-developed machine known as the ancestor to the modern computer.
Wander through to the Textiles Gallery to watch the clicking looms and explore Manchester’s relationship with the cotton trade. Upstairs you’ll find the Experiment Gallery with hands-on science activities aimed at children and curious grown-ups.
The second space upstairs is the new special exhibitions gallery (an entrance fee applies here). Recent big shows include the Amazonia photography exhibition and the Power Up video games experience.
For refreshments choose between the downstairs cafe, the first floor bistro, or bring your own butties to have in the indoor picnic area. The gift shop is recommended if you’re looking for unusual, science-inspired gifts for kids.