Manchester Museum, part of the University of Manchester, has announced it will reopen its doors to the public in February 2023.
The museum closed in August 2021 to facilitate the final phase of a £15 million transformation project called ‘hello future’, and has been holding online and pop-up events while the project continues.
The transformation includes a two-storey extension, which will expand the museum’s footprint by 25%, alongside a reconfiguration of existing spaces. The museum will also gain a new shop and café, and inclusive facilities including Changing Places toilets, a prayer space, a quiet room, therapy space, and picnic area.
Accessibility and circulation are also being improved, with a new ramped entrance from Oxford Road leading to a Welcome Area.
New galleries will include an Exhibition Hall, which will host its‘ Golden Mummies of Egypt’, a new Belonging Gallery, the Lee Kai Hung Chinese Culture Gallery, and a South Asia Gallery in partnership with the British Museum.
Over 18,000 objects have either been moved or protected from building work and as much material as possible is being reused or recycled.
The project is supported using funding by Arts Council England, The National Lottery Heritage Fund, The University of Manchester, and the generosity of numerous philanthropic supporters.
Manchester Museum’s Director Esme Ward said: “Despite the challenges we have faced during the pandemic, our team and partners have never lost faith in our vision for a reimagined Manchester Museum that is more caring, inclusive and imaginative.”