Manchester Museum and the Whitworth art gallery are reopening their doors to the public from today for the first time since the pandemic-enforced lockdown came into place six months ago.
Both venues will have new opening times of 11am to 4pm Wednesday to Sunday. Although only partially open, old favourites like Stan the T.rex at the Museum will again be accessible to patrons. At the Whitworth there are six exhibitions on display including the brand-new ‘White Psyche’ whilst the Cafe and meditative Alex Bernstein Garden are once again open to visitors.
Alistair Hudson, Director of the Whitworth, said: “All the team at the Whitworth are so excited to be able to open the gallery and park up again after six months of lockdown. During this time, it has been clear that there is a huge public need for the arts in people’s lives.
“The Whitworth provides the most wonderful environment for easing back into the world, with free access to world-class collections, acres of space to wander in galleries and gardens and plenty of stimulating content.”
Esme Ward, Director of Manchester Museum, added: “For the past few months we’ve continued to connect with the public through innovative and engaging ways online via our digital platforms, #mminquarantine and live streams, and this is something we intend to keep up. But we know nothing is better than welcoming our visitors to the museum in person. It’s beautiful to be back and we can’t wait for visitors to return.”
Both cultural venues will fully adhere to all the latest government advice and mandated protocols for Covid19, including hand sanitisers at entrance points, social distancing and the wearing of masks for those who aren’t exempt. At the Museum other measures include, a new one-way route where visitors can see all their favourite objects in the Natural History galleries, including Stan the T.rex and the Vivarium.
Other key dates for the Museum are the opening of its take-away coffee shop on Monday, 21 September, and the Museum Shop on Monday 5 October. These will both be open seven days a week. From 23 September, on Wednesdays and Fridays, the Museum will also have a dedicated time (11am-12noon) for vulnerable people with free priority tickets.
Entry remains free for both venues, but it is essential the patrons book a timed ticket in advance of their visits so the venues can adhere to social distances rules.