Thursday 5th of November 2015
1. Imperial War Museum North
The Imperial War Museum North is a little different form your average military museum, which usually has a focus on battle strategies and military hardware. Instead Manchester’s Imperial War Museum gives us the reality of war, and surprisingly, it’s not a nice experience. The museum is fascinating but it is a hard going affair which is a refreshing and honest approach to exploring and understanding war.
The museum looks at the main conflicts of the 20th century for the most part, with a huge range of displays including regular video screenings, both from early-20th century warfare and more recent, modern footage. The building which houses the museum is a feat of architectural prowess too and it is a fantastic experience for all who visit, and leaves you with plenty to think about.
2. Elizabeth Gaskell House
Three miles south of Manchester City Centre and under 10 miles’ drive in your Easirent hire car from the airport, Elizabeth Gaskell House is a place of huge literary importance. The Grade II listed Regency-style villa was home to Elizabeth Gaskell in the mid-19th century and it was frequently visited by other recognisable literary names, including Charlotte Bronte and Charles Dickens. More than this though, Elizabeth Gaskell House is almost unique in Manchester for its interior in which has been carefully maintained and restored to its original style, further enhancing the atmosphere the house possesses.
3. People’s History Museum
With a focus on the people of Britain, the People’s History Museum tells the story of Britain’s fight for democracy, spread across two centuries. It is housed in an Edwardian pumping station and it has the fun additional extra of requiring all visitors to ‘clock in’ via an old mill clock and then go back in time to a world where there was no universal suffrage, no worker’s rights and a very rare chance of fair pay. Exhibits include the very desk on which Thomas Paine wrote the Rights of Man and huge flags and banners, made unions for strike action. This is a museum which will continue to grow with the times and offers a fascinating picture of our most recent history too, with exhibits dedicated to the founding the NHS and the protests against the Poll Tax.
4. Museum of Science and Industry
Manchester’s Museum of Science and Industry (or MSI) offers a wealth of information about the industrial revolution and the role Manchester played. There are steam locomotives, factory machinery and the history of Manchester from its humble beginnings to enjoy. Whilst it suits visitors of all ages younger guests will love the chance to get hands-on and explore the wide range of machinery and gadgets, including electric-shock machines and even a printing press.
5. National Football Museum
Just minutes from Manchester’s central shopping district, the National Football Museum is housed in the eye-catching Urbis building and brings Britain’s favourite sport to the home of its most popular and successful club. It charts the evolution of British football from when the first ball was kicked to the huge money-making industry it is today. It has many interactive elements including Football Plus where visitors can test their football skills in specially designed simulators.