Happy birthday Discovery Museum: Pictures from Newcastle's home of history past

By Culture24 Reporter | 19 July 2014

As the Discovery Museum throws a party to celebrate 80 years, see pictures of its former Co-op home and more

Click on the picture to launch the gallery

In a year when it has attracted more than 50,000 visitors to an exhibition about the city’s rarely-dull Premier League football club, Newcastle’s Discovery Museum has spent the day (July 19 2014) celebrating in style, with live animals and Transformers among the attractions on its 80th birthday.

The Museum of Science and Industry opened in July 1934 as a result of the hugely popular North East Coast exhibition, receiving more than 22,000 visitors during its first year in an imposing former Co-operative building at Exhibition Park.

Its burgeoning collections outgrew the building, and the museum moved to its current home, at Blandford Square, in 1978, relaunching as the Discovery Museum 15 years later.

A £13 million redevelopment in 2004 was rewarded when the landmark became the region’s most popular museum the following year, welcoming 450,000 fans.

“It’s hard to believe that it is 80 years since the Municipal Museum of Science and Industry, which went on to become Discovery Museum, opened in Exhibition Park,” said Carolyn Ball, the museum’s manager.

“This Saturday gives us a chance to celebrate everything in Discovery’s history with our visitors, who I’m sure will have a wonderful day out at our party.”

  • Big Thursdays take place at the museum throughout the summer. Highlights include Geordie Day: A Celebration of Tyneside (July 31) and the Discovery Summer Festival (August 7).

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More from Culture24's coverage of the Discovery Museum:

From Israel and Palestine to Derby and Newcastle: New exhibitions on football's soul

Curator's Choice: Ciara Phipps on colourful court shoes

Newcastle's Discovery Museum celebrates 75th anniversary
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