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Saturday, 18 February 2017

Mechanical Things and other exhibits at the Thinktank Science Museum

The kids and I have just been to the Thinktank, Birmingham's Science Museum, for a fun packed day out. We have been to the Thinktank many times before and for a couple of years were annual pass holders due to its great appeal as a rainy day place to visit. Today's trip was due to my desire for us to check out the temporary exhibition, Mechanical Things- Adventures and Inventions from the World of Rowland Emett. This exhibition runs until March 5th 2017 and includes some of his famous inventions such as the Chitty Chitty Bang Bang car. This was fun to see although it was one of six made for the film!

Mechanical Things. Think Tank Science Museum


There were lots of items on display and by far the most interesting things to myself and the kids were the many amazing mechanical exhibits loaned by places such as the Mad Museum in Stratford and the Cabaret Mechanical Theatre Collection. There was no getting away from the fact that these mechanical curiosities were a clear labour of love for there creators. Even the kids expressed how beautiful the exhibits were and they were truly amazing works of art in themselves.

Mechanical Things at Thinktank Science Museum

Mechanical Things at Thinktank Science MuseumMechanical Things at Thinktank Science Museum


About half of the exhibits were accessible to be controlled by the public via buttons or handles and those which were clearly too delicate to be constantly in use could be viewed in action via small screens placed next to the exhibit. The hands on nature of the exhibition kept the kids interested throughout and we spent about an hour in the room. These included the breakfast making machine and a large mechanical whale which particularly interested them!

Mechanical Things at Thinktank Science Museum
The breakfast making machine- anyone for a cup of tea, egg and toast? 

Mechanical Things at Thinktank Science Museum
Watching the inner workings of the whale!

Mechanical Things at Thinktank Science Museum
Lots of hands on exhibits

The exhibits appealed greatly to my love of vintage too as I feel that the technology used to create the models harks back to automated toys of the past. Rowland Emett's final piece, 'Cloud Cuckoo Land' which stands in the centre of the room was very enchanting and when all the pieces moved it created a magical dream-like world.

Mechanical Things at Thinktank Science Museum

As previously mentioned, the exhibition only runs now until 5th March but I think it is definitely worth a day out alongside the rest of the museum. It fits in perfectly with the family friendly hands on appeal of the museum with its Kids' City with its cafe and hospital plus working phones so that the kids can ring each other. I think this area is now looking a bit tired but the kids don't seem to notice!

Thinktank Science Museum Birmingham


The kids also love sorting rubbish in the recycling gallery- they could do it for hours!

Thinktank Science Museum Birmingham

Thinktank Science Museum Birmingham


The Science Garden is a particularly hands on areas which my two really enjoy. With a range of outdoor activities to explore energy and physics in a truly engaging and hands on way.

Thinktank Science Museum Birmingham
Thinktank Science Museum Birmingham
Thinktank Science Museum BirminghamThinktank Science Museum Birmingham


During the visit the kids also enjoyed completing a trail around the Wild Life Gallery which uses old fossils, bones and stuffed animals from the museum collection in interesting modern displays to teach the kids more about nature.

Thinktank Science Museum Birmingham

Thinktank Science Museum Birmingham

A variety of ticket prices apply and the Plantarium shows are extra. Visit the Thinktank website for more information.



Thinktank Science Museum Birmingham

RachelSwirl

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