SJ8097 : Imperial War Museum North, Trafford Wharf, Manchester

taken 12 years ago, near to Trafford Park, Trafford, Great Britain

Imperial War Museum North, Trafford Wharf, Manchester
Imperial War Museum North, Trafford Wharf, Manchester
Seen here from the quayside outside the Lowry Centre, the Imperial War Museum North (sometimes referred to as IWM North) at Trafford Wharf, opened in July 2002. It is one of the five branches of the Imperial War Museum, the first to be located in the north of England. The museum explores the impact of modern conflicts on people and society. The museum site overlooks the Manchester Ship Canal and the former Manchester Docks in Trafford Park, an area which was a key industrial centre during the Second World War and consequently was heavily bombed during the Manchester Blitz in 1940.

The museum building was designed by architect Daniel Libeskind. Its striking design provokes mixed reactions; it has been recognised with awards or prize nominations for its architecture, but has also been criticised for poor energy efficiency. The concept for the design, not to everyone’s taste is “that of a globe shattered into fragments and then reassembled on that site as an iconic emblem of conflict. The building is the interlocking of three shards representing earth, air, and water”.

The museum features a permanent exhibition of chronological and thematic displays, supported by hourly audiovisual presentations which are projected throughout the gallery space. The museum also hosts a programme of temporary exhibitions.

Both the exterior and interior of the building provide a stimulating experience for visitors. As part of a national museum, Imperial War Museum North is financed by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and by self-generated income and, currently, admission is free.

LinkExternal link - IWM North official web site.

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The Manchester Ship Canal
The Manchester Ship Canal, which took six years to build and was opened in 1894, is a 36-mile-long inland waterway linking Manchester to the Irish Sea at Liverpool. It generally follows the original routes of the rivers Mersey and Irwell through the historic counties of Cheshire and Lancashire. Several sets of locks lift vessels about 60 feet up to the Manchester Docks (now Salford Quays), where the canal's terminus was built.

When the ship canal opened in January 1894 it was the largest river navigation canal in the world, and enabled the newly created Port of Manchester to become Britain's third busiest port despite the city being about 40 miles inland. Since its opening, the canal handled a wide range of ships and cargoes, from coastal vessels to intra-European shipping and inter-continental cargo liners; Manchester Liners established regular sailings by large ocean-going vessels.

The amount of freight carried by the canal peaked in 1958 at 18 million long tons but changes to shipping methods and the growth of containerisation during the 1970s and 1980s caused traffic to decline, resulting in the closure of the docks at Salford in 1984. Although able to accommodate a range of vessels from coastal ships to inter-continental cargo liners, the canal is no longer large enough for most modern vessels.
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SJ8097, 889 images   (more nearby )
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Date Taken
Wednesday, 18 July, 2007   (more nearby)
Tuesday, 12 January, 2010
Geographical Context
Suburb, Urban fringe  Educational sites  Historic sites and artefacts 
Place (from Tags)
Salford Quays  Trafford Park 
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SJ 803 970 [100m precision]
WGS84: 53:28.1781N 2:17.8670W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SJ 803 971
View Direction
South-southwest (about 202 degrees)
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Other Tags
Museum  Imperial War Museum  21st Century  Architecture  Twenty First Century  IWM 

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