IWM North

Manchester, United Kingdom

IWM North

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Imperial War Museum North (sometimes referred to as IWM North) is a museum in the Metropolitan Borough of Trafford in Greater Manchester, England. One of five branches of the Imperial War Museum, it explores the impact of modern conflicts on people and society. It is the first branch of the Imperial War Museum to be located in the north of England. The museum occupies a site overlooking the Manchester Ship Canal on Trafford Wharf Road, Trafford Park, an area which during the Second World War was a key industrial centre and consequently heavily bombed during the Manchester Blitz in 1940. Just across the Trafford Wharf Road from the Museum is the bulk of the Rank Hovis Flour Mill, a survivor from a former industrial age and now rather out of keeping with the surrounding architecture. The area is now home to the Lowry cultural centre and the MediaCityUK development, which stand opposite the museum at Salford Quays.

The museum building was designed by architect Daniel Libeskind and opened in July 2002, receiving 470,000 visitors in its first year of opening. It was recognised with awards or prize nominations for its architecture and is a prime example of Deconstructivist architecture. The museum features a permanent exhibition of chronological and thematic displays, supported by hourly audiovisual presentations which are projected throughout the gallery space. The museum also hosts a programme of temporary exhibitions in a separate gallery. Since opening, the museum has operated a successful volunteer programme, which since January 2007 has been run in partnership with Manchester Museum. As part of a national museum, Imperial War Museum North is financed by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport and by self-generated income. Admission is free.

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