IWM North in Manchester will reopen on 1 August 2020, following three months of closure due to the coronavirus pandemic. A new exhibition, Aid Workers: Ethics Under Fire will open at IWM North on 2 October 2020.
Visitors to IWM North will be able to explore the permanent displays in the Main Exhibition Space, including refreshed Holocaust and Contemporary Conflict cases which had been only recently completed before IWM North closed to the public in March. Highlights from IWM’s collection at IWM North include: JRR Tolkien’s First World War revolver, which he carried with him at the Battle of the Somme; the Field Gun, which fired the first British shell of the First World War; a 7 metre-high piece of distorted steel recovered from the wreckage of the World Trade Center following the 9/11 attacks; and the compass of Oliver Philpot, who in 1943 made a famous ‘Wooden Horse’ escape from Stalag Luft III prisoner of war camp.
IWM North’s iconic Big Picture Show, a unique 360° audio-visual experience, showcasing IWM’s world-renowned collections of photography, art and sound, will also resume from 1 August. Films include Life on the Line: with footage from Peter Jackson’s They Shall Not Grow Old, which features clips from the critically acclaimed film alongside digitally transformed film, photographs and audio from IWM’s First World War collection.
Diane Lees, Director-General of IWM, said: “Not since the Second World War has IWM been forced to close its doors entirely to visitors, but we’re delighted to share the news that IWM North will be open once more from 1 August 2020. The past few months have not been easy, but IWM has navigated its way through the many challenges that this country has faced since we first opened our doors in 1917.
“To ensure that our visitors, staff and volunteers are safe, a number of changes have been made to allow for social distancing at IWM North. However, we have worked tirelessly to guarantee that you will still be able to explore the same displays, collections and stories, and have a fantastic day out. We are looking forward to getting back to what we do best, and we hope to welcome you back to IWM North soon.”
Although entry to IWM North remains free of charge, visitors will need to pre-book a timeslot online. This will allow IWM to control the number of people onsite at any one time in line with current Government advice on social distancing. IWM Members will receive access to priority booking from Friday 10 July with public bookings opening on Wednesday 15 July. Visitors are encouraged to check the IWM website for up to date visitor
information regarding tickets and facilities before booking.