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Shine a light on science this winter at the Science and Industry Museum

Brighten up the winter holidays with an adventure though light and colour at one of the region's most popular museums and explore world-premiere experiences, gaming extravaganzas and festive science shows.  

From Saturday 16 December 2022 to Sunday 7 January 2023, the Science and Industry Museum is inviting everyone to come and discover the secrets of light and colour through a series of illuminating activities, special shows and immersive experiences. Visitors can also discover the inner workings of the digestive system in world-premiere exhibition, Operation Ouch! Food, Poo and You or be whisked away to new worlds with ultimate gaming experience, Power Up. On Tuesday 12 December, visitors can take a front row seat for the live recording of the CHRISTMAS LECTURES from the Royal Institution ahead of its broadcast on the BBC. 

A series of illuminating experiments will bring colour to grey winter days in the museum's interactive Light Lab. Visitors can make light perform tricks, create colours and spark creativity as they experiment with reflections. They can also journey from the Sun back to the Earth during special science shows led by the museum's team of expert Explainers, discover how light travels through our atmosphere, explore the science of solar flares and marvel at a mesmerising display of the Northern Lights with NASA footage of the Aurora Borealis. 

Visitors can slow things down in the Recharge Retreat to cosy up with a picture book or explore the relationship between colour and mood and why nature is so important to our health.  

The museum's wonderfully weird world-premiere exhibition, Operation Ouch! Food, Poo and You will also be available to explore. The rib-tickling adventure involves a journey through the digestive system, offering the unique opportunity to explore the science of the human body from the inside out. From tongue to bum, it investigates the job of each digestive organ in keeping us healthy, breaking the taboo around poo by through super-sized experiments, playful adventure and hands-on learning. 

It is the first time hit BBC Children's TV show, Operation Ouch!, has been brought to life as an exhibition. Just like the show, the exhibition embraces silliness in the name of science, encouraging audiences to leave their inhibitions at the door as they're shrunk, swallowed, squeezed through and spat out of a giant digestive system. It includes a number of world-first and weird experiences, such as The Big Flush—a once-in-a-lifetime experience of travelling like a poo and being flushed down a giant toilet—and the world's only interactive 'pooduction' line where visitors can 'make' a poo and discover how our bodies absorb nutrients and expel waste.

Anyone looking to be whisked away on new adventures this winter can also enjoy ultimate gaming experience, Power Up and immerse themselves in a host of different digital worlds. Players can work their way through five decades of video games and over one hundred consoles. Whether it's revelling in nostalgia with retro arcade classics Pong and Pac-Man, rocking out on Guitar Hero or tackling a virtual reality mission with Astro Bot, there's something for everyone. 

The museum is currently undergoing a multi-million-pound restoration programme. Spaces including the Power Hall and 1830 Station are currently closed to the public but there's still lots to enjoy. Visitors can see science in action in the museum's interactive gallery, Experiment, meet mighty machines in the Textiles Gallery and discover world changing ideas in Revolution Manchester. Incredible objects from Professor Stephen Hawking's office are also on display in its highlights display. 

Jamie Sloan, School and Families Manager at the Science and Industry Museum, said:

'We're delighted that our interactive Light Lab is returning for a second time to brighten up the winter holidays. There will be loads of playful, entertaining and interesting experiences to enjoy. Whether it's witnessing the beauty of the Northern Lights, unravelling the mystery behind colour, giggling your way through the digestive system or exploring hundreds of video games, there's something for everyone to explore.'

For something a little different this festive season, the museum is also offering front row seats to the first of the CHRISTMAS LECTURES from the Royal Institution as it's recorded ahead of its broadcast on the BBC. 

On Tuesday 12 December, families can watch celebrated academic and author, Professor Mike Wooldridge, live as he tackles the most important and rapidly evolving field of science today, Artificial Intelligence. 

As well as being Professor of AI at the University of Oxford, Mike is also Director for AI at The Alan Turing Institute in London and has received multiple awards for both research and education. He is currently Editor-in-Chief of Artificial Intelligence, the leading journal for AI, and has written multiple books focusing on the subject. Throughout three lectures, Mike will explore the big questions facing AI research and unravel the myths about how this ground-breaking technology really works. He’ll explore whether machines can really think like humans, reveal secrets behind the latest AI developments and unveil the mind-boggling scale of modern AI systems that can be used in everything from gaming to movie making and designing drugs.   

The audience at the Science and Industry Museum's screening can watch an exclusive sneak preview of the first of this year's three lectures, screened live from the Royal Institution. The recordings have been screened at the Science and Industry Museum since 2018 to offer audiences outside of London access to the live event and an exclusive glimpse of what goes on behind the scenes to create the prestigious programme. It will be streamed to an audience in the museum's Revolution Manchester gallery ahead of its broadcast on BBC Four and iPlayer between Christmas and New Year.

Doors will open at 17.30 with the event taking place from 18.00–20.00 on 12 December. It is recommended for audiences aged 11 and over. Tickets are on sale now, costing £5 for adults or £3 for children and concessions. With limited capacity, visitors are encouraged to book soon to avoid disappointment via the museum's website (www.scienceandindustrymuseum.org.uk). 

The museum will be closed on 24–26 December 2023 and 1 January 2024. 

Free museum tickets, plus tickets for Operation Ouch! Food, Poo and You and Power Up, which start at £8 for adults/£6 for children, can be booked now.

Full details of the winter holiday activities can be found on the museum's website (www.scienceandindustrymuseum.org.uk/whats-on/winter-holidays-2023).
 
For more information about what is on at the museum and to book tickets in advance, visit the museum's website (www.scienceandindustrymuseum.org.uk) or call 033 0058 0058.

The museum's multi-million-pound restoration project is revealing inspirational new spaces and perspectives for all to enjoy, play and learn in. This includes carrying out crucial work to restore and tell the stories of the historic listed Power Hall and the 1830 Station and Warehouse; building awe-inspiring new indoor and outdoor experiences for families; bringing to life the story of the revolutionary railway; and using its collections to create new galleries revealing the wonder of how Manchester's past and present continue to shape the modern world. 

-ENDS-

For more information, please contact communications manager, Alex Urmston, on 07741 103 790/ alex.urmston@scienceandindustrymuseum.org.uk.  
 

NOTES TO EDITORS    

ABOUT THE SCIENCE AND INDUSTRY MUSEUM  

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.