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Create a city of the future at the Science and Industry Museum this October half term

This October half term, one of Manchester's most-loved family attractions is inviting young people to transform into the architects, engineers and inventors of tomorrow with a packed family programme exploring the future of our city through art, design and performance.

From 21 October to 5 November, the Science and Industry Museum is handing over its galleries and spaces to community groups and neighbours from across Manchester. From primary school children to artists and performers, the groups will be using their unique outlooks to help visitors explore all the ways the city is evolving. 

Visitors can become architects for the day and reimagine the city's high streets and iconic skyline, discover how to get their voices heard using arts and crafts and explore Manchester's industrial history through live performances.

The Science and Industry Museum explores ideas that change the world and aims to nurture the engineers and innovators of the future with inspiring science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) experiences. Live engineering is in action across the museum's seven-acre site, as it undergoes a multi-million-pound renovation project to open brand new spaces and make significant improvements to some of its best-loved galleries. Although this means some of its buildings are temporarily closed, visitors can take inspiration from the innovations happening before their eyes as they enjoy a range of creative pop-up activities this half term. 

Highlights from the programme include a giant interactive model of Openshaw high street, which will give families a unique chance to explore and create high streets of the future. Designed by architect Laura Sanderson, the hands-on activity will encourage place-makers of tomorrow to create their vision of future communities by designing their own town centres through giant drawing challenges and model making.

Local children from Armitage C of E and All Saints Primary Schools have created a series of special workshops where visitors to the museum can reimagine the city's skyline. Participants will transform into engineers, rebuilding Manchester from viewpoints around the museum's site. Inspiring stories from the city's community will also be shared during pop-up events, including Dukinfield Craft Café, who are using craft to explore the impact of the closure of their community swimming pool. Visitors can join them to explore the relationship between water and wellbeing through listening to and sharing stories about water and contributing to a collaborative string of bunting. 

Friends and neighbours from across the city will also be hosting activities in the museum. This includes Manchester Museum, whose rickshaw will be on display over the holidays for visitors to adorn with sustainable decorations celebrating Manchester's South Asian community. Visit the museum's website for a list of partners.  

This special holiday programme has been created in partnership with friends and partners across the city as part of the Science and Industry Museum's new City Sparks community programme

Ruth Murray Community Partnerships Manager said: 

'We're so excited to be bringing together partners, friends and neighbours from across Manchester this October half term. The Science and Industry Museum is home to ideas that change the world, from Manchester and beyond. It's our mission to inspire the next generation of creators, engineers and inventors, and we can't wait to see our visitors' ideas about the future of our amazing city. 

'There's something for everyone as we invite visitors to take part in hands-on activities and special installations to answer important questions about our futures. This is the first year of our new City Sparks programme and we're thrilled to see such varied ideas from across our city come together to make a fun-filled half term holiday.'

As well as the partnership activities taking place over half term, visitors can experience super-size science in world premiere exhibition Operation Ouch! Food, Poo and You. Bringing the hit BBC Children's TV show Operation Ouch! to life as an exhibition for the first time, visitors will go on a journey of digestion as they're shrunk, swallowed and squeezed through a giant digestive system. Investigate some of the body's funniest functions with super-sized science, fascinating facts and interactive experiences.  
Ultimate gaming experience,  Power Up, will be open every day of the holiday, with five decades of games to discover. Visitors can enjoy arcade favourites like Pac-Man or explore the future of gaming through virtual reality, with over a hundred consoles to try out.
The museum's free family favourite galleries and displays will also be available to explore. See science brought to life in interactive gallery Experiment; meet the machines, people and stories that made Manchester the first industrial city in the Textiles Gallery; and journey through Manchester's rich legacy of world changing ideas in Revolution Manchester. Visitors can also explore the life of Professor Stephen Hawking through incredible objects from the renowned scientist’s office.  

General admission to the museum is free, but tickets need to be booked in advance through the museum's website ( or by calling 033 0058 0058. Full details of all the activities taking place at the museum over October half term can also be found on the website. 

Tickets for Operation Ouch! Food, Poo and You are available to book and priced at £10 for adults, £9 children, senior and concessions, with children aged three and under going in free. Tickets for Power Up are £8 for adults/£6 for children (family discounts available).


For more information, please contact Communications Officer, Catherine Tindsley, on



The Science and Industry Museum tells the story of where science met industry and the modern world began. Manchester was one of the first global industrial cities, and its epic rise, decline and resurrection has been echoed in countless other cities around the world.   

The museum's mission is to inspire all its visitors, including future scientists and inventors, with the story of how ideas can change the world, from the industrial revolution to today and beyond.   

The Science and Industry Museum site is on the site of the Liverpool Road Station terminus of the Liverpool Manchester Railway, the world's first purpose-built passenger railway. Among its internationally significant buildings are the world's first passenger railway station and the oldest existing railway goods warehouse. In total there are two Grade I listed buildings and four Grade II listed buildings on the site.  

The museum is currently undergoing a multi-million-pound regeneration project that will see brand new spaces opened and significant improvements made to some of its best-loved galleries.  

The Science and Industry Museum is part of the Science Museum Group, a family of museums which also includes the Science Museum in London; the National Railway Museum in York and Shildon; and the Science and Media Museum in Bradford. The Science Museum Group is devoted to the history and contemporary practice of science, medicine, technology, industry and media. With five million visitors each year and an unrivalled collection, it is the most significant group of museums of science and innovation worldwide.