Museum of Science & Industry

I would give the Museum of Science & Industry, Manchester, a miss at the moment.

We visited on Sunday January 5th 2020 – to be fair, it was the last day of the Christmas holidays. That might explain the poor museum, but I’m not sure.

The Museum is free and it has always been a nice day out. We were keen to take our little boy as this would be his first experience of the museum that he would actually remember. “There are trains, planes and lots of games to play,” we told him.

The main entrance is really impressive. The staff were really polite and friendly. We visited the Experiments part of the museum. This is really interactive and fun and was the most popular part of the museum. Our children loved it, but I couldn’t help but feel that it needed some TLC and investment. It needed a good clean. Many of the exhibits were not looking their best. For instance, there is a bike to ride which lights up a skeleton riding a bike. The skeleton’s leg had fallen off. There was an emphasis on sustainability on some of the activities, which was ironic as the picnic area didn’t offer many facilities in the way of recycling.

The cafes, as we walked past, were really impressive. They are clearly assets and the part of the museum that generates a lot of money. The shop looked great too, but we avoided this – it was January.

The textiles area was very quiet and there wasn’t much going on at all.

There was an exhibition about the sun, but this had a charge to go in, and the children weren’t particularly interested.

There was a science show – this was actually the last day of the show. This was great – our children really enjoyed it. The guy presenting was fun and interesting. It was interactive, funny and the children learned some good facts about the sun.

We went over to the Air and Space Hall. We noticed a sign that said the roof had leaked due to the heavy rain a few weeks ago. This might have explained why many of the planes and vehicles were covered up and why some of the paths were closed.

The 1830 Station and Warehouse were pretty much empty. There was a very old exhibit about connecting Manchester. A few years ago these buildings were thriving.

The Power Hall where the trains were was closed for refurbishment.

I am being harsh as it seems that the museum is undergoing lots of developments which will perhaps make it a better place to visit in the future. But sadly, at the moment, to be honest, it’s not a great day out.

Brereton Heath

So, the theme of our family days out in 2019 is to be fun but cheap.

We have pretty much hibernated this entire school holiday, the children not even getting dressed on some days whilst they snuggled up and watched movies. It was time to get out of the house!

So today we went out for a nice walk at Brereton Heath. On the outskirts of Holmes Chapel, Brereton Heath is a lake around which there is a lovely walk. Lily took her scooter and George took his balance bike. The walk is not at all strenuous but does include some gradients up and down which Lily didn’t always find easy on her scooter. George was fine on his balance bike!

We fed the ducks. Be warned – there are ducks, swans and geese and they all come out of the water and chase you for the food. George and Lily were a bit bewildered by this.

As we visited on a cold January afternoon there was no coffee shop open but we have been before when there is. There is a visitor centre but we didn’t go in. There are toilets but we didn’t use them.

The car park is 80p for an hour or £2 for up to three hours. We were there for an hour and a half.