Worldwide icon-chevron-right Europe icon-chevron-right United Kingdom icon-chevron-right England icon-chevron-right Manchester icon-chevron-right Imperial War Museum North

Imperial War Museum North

Museums, Military and maritime
Imperial War Museum North, Manchester

Time Out says

Friendly warning! We're working hard to be accurate. But these are unusual times, so please check that venues remain open.

A century’s worth of history spread across two exhibition halls in a suitably sobering canalside building

Architect Daniel Libeskind's astonishing building, an aluminium-clad landmark on the banks of the Manchester ship canal, could easily have overshadowed the content within. Brilliantly, it does not. Sloping floors and obtuse angles inside are a deliberately disorientating attack on the senses. Like Libeskind's Jewish Museum in Berlin, the experience of the building itself establishes a state of mind that makes what you're seeing all the more effective.

There are two exhibition halls. The main space houses the permanent display where a fascinating timeline from 1914 to the present leads you around the walls to themed bunkers, while objects like a huge section of twisted girder from New York’s World Trade Center interrupt the flow to shock, highlight and emphasise points on your journey. At regular intervals, a projector show brings the walls alive. Temporary exhibitions occupy a second hall, and the giant air shaft, accessible via a deliberately slow and shaky lift, ascends awkwardly to a skewed viewing platform.

Somehow, it's an inspiring rather than depressing experience.

By: Rob Martin



Address: The Quays
Trafford Wharf Road
M17 1TZ
Transport: Rail: Manchester Piccadilly/Deansgate/Harbour City
You may also like
    Latest news