National Media Museum

National Media Museum
baby changing facilities icon Food icon Shop icon Library icon Study area icon Visual disability facilities icon Wheelchair access icon

As part of the Science Museum Group, the decision to locate the Museum in Bradford was driven by the city's historic contribution to the development of cinema and film-making in the UK, and the desire to make the National Collections accessible to a wider audience.

From its outset the Museum has set new standards in display and interactivity. Visitors can obtain a hands-on experience of the media, learning how television cameras work or trying their hand at animation among other activities.

Special events bring you face-to-face with leading photographers, stars and programme makers, allowing you to ask the questions you want answered. Three film festivals bring you the very best in new and classic film. We have an excellent educational offer for schools and colleges. Look out for our special half term family events and the return of sleepovers.

Above all, the Museum invites you explore the media, the world it presents and to think again.

Venue Type:


Opening hours

Daily 1000-1800
Cinemas open till late.

Closed: Christmas Day

Admission charges

General Museum Admission Free.
Charges apply for IMAX, Shop, Cafe & Cinemas

The Museum's renowned collection includes more than three million items of historical, social and cultural value. These include three key 'firsts': the world's first negative, the earliest television footage and what is regarded as the world's first example of moving pictures – Louis Le Prince's 1888 film of Leeds Bridge. Alongside this you will find the Playschool toys, the longest-established IMAX cinema and the only publicly accessible Cinerama cinema in the world.

Collection details

Archives, Film and Media, Personalities, Photography, Science and Technology, Social History

Key artists and exhibits

  • The world's first negative
  • The earliest television footage
  • Louis Le Prince's 1888 film of Leeds Bridge (regarded as the world's first example of moving pictures)
  • The Playschool toys (Humpty, Jemima, Big Ted and Little Ted) and Dapple the rocking horse, as well as the three windows (round, square and arched) and the cuckoo clock from the BBC TV programme.
Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
Eggcam - Penguins Spy in the Huddle

Nature, Camera, Action! The Secrets of Making Incredible Wildlife Films

  • 12 October 2014 — 18 October 2019 *on now

Try to imagine the deepest oceans, the coldest continents, the most fearsome animals – wildlife filmmakers and photographers have faced it all in the pursuit of the perfect shot. This summer, let us take you and your family on an incredible journey as you discover how programmes like Frozen Planet and Deadly 60 are made.

Come and be amazed by pictures of insect wings taken in the 1840s and try to spot the cameras disguised as animals. You will see how photographers and filmmakers capture sounds and speeds beyond our human senses, and how ‘spy cams’ allow us get up close and personal with predators.

The whole family can their hands on exhibits that demonstrate the challenges wildlife filmmakers face and how they overcome them. You will be able to pick up an explorer's backpack full of tools to help discover this incredible world. You’ll also be able to pick up some simple tips and tricks to help you create amazing nature films on your own doorstep – upload them to the Nature Camera Action Flickr group and they could even feature in the exhibition!

With activities and events announced throughout the summer, there’s something for the whole family to enjoy together.

Suitable for

  • Any age


photograph of young boy looking through a viewfinder

Magic Factory

  • 1 November 2014 — 1 November 2018 *on now

The Magic Factory uses hands-on exhibits to demonstrate the scientific principles of light and colour, and help develop your understanding of the science behind photography, film and television.

There are over 30 activities with accompanying notes should you wish to explore these topics further.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly


photograph of children looking at Morph model in the animation gallery at the National Media Museum

Animation Gallery

  • 1 November 2014 — 1 November 2018 *on now

The Animation Gallery explores the history of animation and animated images, with an emphasis on animation produced in Britain.

See some of your favourite characters, look back at animation through the ages and discover how animators bring drawings and objects to life.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly


BFI Mediatheque

  • 1 November 2014 — 1 November 2018 *on now

Discover the best, the rarest and the most extraordinary films and TV programmes from the BFI National Archive with BFI Mediatheque.

Simply log on at your personal viewing station, choose from over 2,500 titles and watch for free.

Many titles are not available to watch anywhere else, and we have two very special collections - The TV Heaven Collection and God's Own County: Yorkshire on Screen.

Open from 10:00 - 17:00 every day.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly


photograph of child using a television camera to view a girl on a sofa

Experience TV

  • 1 November 2014 — 1 November 2018 *on now

Who invented television and when did it begin in Britain? What does a vision mixer do? What did television sets look like in the sixties? Why do we have adverts on television and how much are we influenced by what we see? Find the answers to all these questions and explore the exciting world of television in our interactive Experience TV gallery.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly


photograph of the Kodak Gallery at the National Media Museum

Kodak Gallery

  • 1 November 2014 — 1 November 2018 *on now

The Kodak Gallery takes you on a journey through the history of popular photography, from the world's first photographs to the digital snapshots of today.

Most of the items on display in the gallery are taken from our collection of 35,000 objects and images donated by Kodak Ltd.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly


photograph of two women inside the National Media Museum's Life Online gallery

Life Online

  • 1 November 2014 — 1 November 2018 *on now

Life Online is the world's first gallery dedicated to exploring the social, technological and cultural impact of the internet. Trace the history of the internet, uncover how it has changed people's lives and track the latest trends.

The gallery covers two spaces within the Museum. The first is a permanent exhibition in the foyer with the second being a changing temporary exhibition on Level 7. The first exhibition to feature is [open source]: Is the internet you know under threat? - an exploration of the open source nature of the internet and the current threats to net neutrality which could signify the end of this culture.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly


early photograph of insect wings

Revelations: Experiments in Photography

  • 19 November 2015 — 7 February 2016

Showcasing some of the first and rarest examples of scientific photography, Revelations explores how the incidental aesthetics of ground-breaking techniques pioneered by figures like William Henry Fox Talbot, Eadweard Muybridge and Harold Edgerton have inspired diverse artistic responses.

From the 1840s, scientists were using photography to record phenomena too large, too small or too fast for the human eye to see. William Henry Fox Talbot’s experiments with microphotography, some of the earliest scientific photographs ever made, will be on show alongside striking works by contemporary artists including Hiroshi Sugimoto.

Co-curated by Greg Hobson, Curator of Photographs at the National Media Museum, and Dr Benedict Burbridge of the University of Sussex, the exhibition will explore how art and science have been used to show phenomena which, thanks to the limits of human physiology, were previously invisible.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly
Resources listed here may include websites, bookable tours and workshops, books, loan boxes and more. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all.

Animation Toolkit

Animation is a fantastic tool to use when exploring almost any theme or subject – from French to fractions, Healthy Eating to History. This learning journey offers some easy-to use techniques for getting started with animation in the classroom.


  • This resource was produced as part of the MLA-funded My Learning project.

National Media Museum
Princes Way
West Yorkshire




Box Office

0844 856 3797


01274 203404

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.