After travelling down to the Lake District last Wednesday, the plan was to head back on Sunday. However, it turns out for some unknown reasons we had a double Bank Holiday today and tomorrow. Hence the trip to Manchester tacked on.
This morning we headed into the city. Lachlan and Pikachu were in good spirits as we made our way to breakfast.
After a reasonably long bus ride we made our way through the city, the kids eyes were darting everywhere.
We bumped into John Rylands Research Institute and Library, a building that looked out of place, sadly it was closed.
The John Rylands Research Institute and Library is a late-Victorian neo-Gothic building on Deansgate in Manchester, England. It is part of the University of Manchester. The library, which opened to the public in 1900, was founded by Enriqueta Augustina Rylands in memory of her husband, John Rylands. It became part of the university in 1972, and now houses the majority of the Special Collections of The University of Manchester Library, the third largest academic library in the United Kingdom… The architectural style is primarily neo-Gothic with elements of the Arts and Crafts movement in the ornate and imposing gatehouse, facing Deansgate, which dominates the surrounding streetscape. The library, granted Grade I listed status in 1994, is maintained by the University of Manchester and open for library readers and visitors.
We seemed to gravitate to the Science and Industry Museum, Eloise straight away knew what this meant, “butttooooons?!”. An easy way to spend the morning.
The Manchester Baby, also called the Small-Scale Experimental Machine (SSEM), was the first electronic stored-program computer. It was built at the University of Manchester by Frederic C. Williams, Tom Kilburn, and Geoff Tootill, and ran its first program on 21 June 1948… As soon as the Baby had demonstrated the feasibility of its design, a project was initiated at the university to develop it into a full scale operational machine, the Manchester Mark 1. The Mark 1 in turn quickly became the prototype for the Ferranti Mark 1, the world’s first commercially available general-purpose computer. The Baby had a 32-bit word length and a memory of 32 words (1 kilobit, 1,024 bits).
Predictably the kids were having a ball. Now that Lachlan is up and about and grabbing things, it was great to see him exploring his curiosity.
After pressing every button in the museum we headed back out to the sun to continue our exploring. We had a rest at the Alan Turing memorial, the kids knew all about Alan from our Bletchley Park day out.
By this stage we were all starting to feel it. To be honest, I think we were all a bit overwhelemed being in another big city after the peaceful days in the Lake District. We swiftly headed past Sinclairs Oyster Bar, Sophie had not changed her mind on seafood so it was back to the hotel.
The UK Bank Holidays are a bit tricky to keep track of, Scotland get some, England get some, some are shared but often not, it seems to be at the businesses discretion. Hence, why we all had the day off, but Manchester was still open for business. There was one spot Dad wanted to return to, Eloise was a strong supportive yes, “120 balls please”. The small clubs were cute.
You can always trust the kids for some honest feedback. Eloise was always quick to tell Dad “I don’t think that is right”, “that was a bad one”, “try again”. Also providing similar levels of encouragment for Super Mum. Just like the Dino golf, the kids were loving the action.