What to do at the Weekend:
Nerd out at Manchester Science and Industry Museum
The Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI)
We recently nominated this place as part of our top 20 free things to do at the weekend (number 2 if you fancy taking a look).
Ben’s been going to the museum here since he was very little – a school trip was his first interaction.
And, because he’s a nerd, it’s been a pretty regular place he visits ever since.
In a nutshell, the museum offers a walk through 250 years of innovation and ideas that contributed to the rich fabric of Manchester’s history.
The museum is an homage to the initiatives that started life in the great city and went on to change not only the UK, but the world.
Linking Science and Industry
Housed within the old Liverpool Street Station site within Greater Manchester, the theme of transport is noticeably prevalent throughout.
The museum really hits the mark when reinforcing the link between scientific discovery and industrial innovation in its exhibits.
There is a particular emphasis on the rise of the machine age in the UK.
The Textiles Gallery at MOSI
One of the areas where this link is most striking, can be found in the Textiles Gallery.
It is little wonder perhaps, since Manchester and the surrounding areas were world-famous for the volume and quality of textiles during the revolution.
Indeed Manchester became known as ‘’Cottonopolis’, as the global epicentre of the world’s cotton industry.
It is estimated that the factories in Manchester imported around a billion tonnes of raw cotton a year.
Huge iron monsters borne of the Platt Brothers & Co. factory in the 19th Century litter the gallery floor.
Both visually impressive and purposed into providing a glimpse into how a real factory floor might have looked at the time.
It is reminiscent of the exhibits at Quarry Bank MIll in nearby Styal, a place that we visited and wrote about earlier in the year.
You can’t fail to be impressed with the exhibits here and, if you catch the timing right, you’ll be treated to a demonstration by one of the volunteers here.
Revolution Manchester Show
At 10.30am, 11.30am, 1pm, and 2pm each day, meet in the central atrium / reception area of the museum for the Revolution Manchester Show.
This interactive talk is hosted by one of the volunteer explainers and is particularly great for kids.
Expect flying things and (sometimes) explosions as the explainer brings science out of the classroom and into real life in a fun and engaging way.
Ben enjoyed it – but he is a big kid after all.
Experiment Gallery at MOSI
Go up to the top level of the museum via the stairs (or lift) and the “Experiment” Gallery is Manchester Science and Industry museum’s fun-zone.
Ditching the dusty old science textbooks, this place is chocked full of the kind of exhibits that really bring science to life.
It’s a chance for kids (and big kids) to get hands-on with some cool science-y experiments.
You’ll know you’re in the right place by the Mini suspended from the ceiling.
(Anywhere that has a car hanging from the ceiling, is going to be a fun place).
It’s the kind of place Ben loved as a kid – among the highlights, you can see through walls, shake your own hand and find out if you can lift that car.
There’s definitely enough to keep everyone entertained for an hour or so and maybe it’ll help inspire the next generation of scientists.
‘Power Up’ at Manchester Science and Industry Museum
Staying on this floor, you’ll notice the Red / Orange area called “Power Up.”
This is MOSI’s incredibly popular (and pretty new) video gaming zone.
It’s a space where visitors of all ages can play their way through video games spanning fifty years of gaming.
From Pong to Pac-Man and Frogger to Fortnite, there’s over 160 consoles and thousands of games to play here.
It’s only open on weekends and school holidays and booking in advance is definitely recommended.
Better still, Power Up will be around until at least December 2023.
How much does Power Up Cost at MOSI?
There is a charge to enter the Power Up gaming experience.
Tickets cost £6 per child and concession, £8 per adult, £7 per senior.
But, this gets you unlimited access to everything inside – so in our view this isn’t a bad deal at all.
Turn It Up Temporary Exhibition at MOSI
As well as the permanent fixtures, the Science and Industry museum hosts special temporary exhibitions each year.
These exhibitions usually centre around a specific theme within science and are generally excellent.
There is an additional charge to enter these exhibitions, but are well worth the extra money to enter.
This time around is the “Turn it Up: The Power of Music” exhibition.
Located on the bottom floor, this was an immersive, highly enjoyable, and fascinating look at everything to do with music and sound.
There are some really cool interactive elements in every section of the exhibition.
You can make toe-tapping music, discover the science between sound, emotion, and memory, and take a look into the future of music technology.
To name just a few items on the menu.
One major advantage of these temporary exhibitions is that because these are paid for experiences, it’s usually less busy.
So, you should be able to see and read everything at your leisure.
Turn It Up will be around until May 2023, so go check it out if you’re planning to visit MOSI.
How much does Turn it Up Cost at Mosi?
Whilst the Museum entry is free, there is a charge to enter Turn It Up (and other temporary exhibitions).
Tickets are priced at £8 adults, £7 seniors, £6 child/concessions.
The Refurbishments to Manchester Science and Industry Museum
Whilst the trip to the museum was enjoyable, there are vast areas that are currently closed due to a multi million pound refurbishment project.
Closed off areas include the Power Hall,1830 Station and Warehouse, and the Air and Space Hal.
Unfortunately, this cut short Ben’s visit to the museum this time around.
He’ll definitely going back once the work is finished, so we’ll be updating this post in the future.
Special Event – Christmas Lecture Special Live Screening
The museum does hold special events from time-to-time, and this Christmas they will be hosting a live viewing of the Christmas Lectures.
In the annual anticipated event from the Royal Institution, Professor Dame Sue Black will be sharing a fascinating look at the scientific detective process.
Alongside this, she will be providing unprecedented insight into her role as a forensic anthropologist, anatomist and academic.
At the museum screening, there will also be a number of interactive activities to participate in. Encouraging visitors to delve into the world of forensic science.
How to get to the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester
Located on Liverpool Pool Road in Manchester (check the map above to see where we mean), the museum is relatively easy to get to.
However, it is located in the city centre, so if you are driving, make sure you have plenty of time. Particularly on weekends, it can get very busy on the roads around that area.
It is important to note that there’s no on-site parking at the museum. However, car parking can be found nearby at the NCP or look out for the metred parking bays in the surrounding area.
Take the Train if you Can
Personally, we would typically take the train to get up to Manchester for this kind of visit.
We would normally take the train into Manchester Piccadilly and then change for Manchester Oxford Road.
It’s a pretty straight forward 10 minute walk once you come out of Oxford Road station.