Building work begins on the new visitor experience at Winchester Science Centre
This week (Monday 20 July) is a big week for Winchester Science Centre as contractors have arrived on site to start the exciting job of constructing the Centre’s brand new visitor experience. The complete transformation of the entire top floor of the venue includes installing an amazing new exhibition, nature-based experimentation zone and recombobulation room (a quiet room for people who need time away from the hustle and bustle of the centre), as well as refreshed welcome area, café and shop. To mark the occasion we are thrilled to release a new illustration showing the incredible sight visitors will be greeted with when the Centre reopens.
Themed around sound, hearing and vibration, the new exhibition will cover all aspects of STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths). Visitors will take a journey through six different zones covering things like the art, physics and biology of sound where many new and exciting interactive exhibits will bring it all to life. Visitors will be able to get hands-on with a mixture of giant installations, including a huge 10m long interactive guitar and distinctive sonic rocket, and smaller table top exhibits, such as tuning forks and pendulums.
The £1.1m million development, which has been designed by internationally renowned exhibition and narrative designers Houghton Kneale Design Ltd (HKD), secured full funding at the end of 2019 thanks to a grant from the Biffa Award, a multi-million pound fund that helps to build communities and transform lives through awarding grants to projects across the UK. Support for the project has also come from Enterprise M3 LEP, Garfield Weston Foundation, Winchester City Council and Hampshire County Council.
The start of work on site truly is a milestone moment as it may never have happened. In March, as the country responded to the pandemic, the Science Centre was closed, and businesses, including the contractor TMP, furloughed staff and shut up shop. Thankfully, the Winchester Science Centre and TMP teams have been doing everything they can to get the project back on track and ready to open in time for October half term. While the site is under construction, we have decided to remain closed and are working towards a provisional reopening date of Saturday 17 October.