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The North West

The North West of England is a region blessed with a wealth of a diverse museums and galleries to visit. In particular, Liverpool and Merseyside with its fascinating maritime history offers a look into its heritage and culture and whilst the former is a popular draw for many, the wider region also has a lot more to offer than you would initially think.


In the Wirral is the Port Sunlight Museum and Garden Village, a beautiful 19th century village created by philanthropic soap baron William Lever solely for the workers at his Sunlight Soap factory.


The museum tells the story of Lever (later to be known as Lord Leverhulme) and his vision in creating this unique place and is packed with tales and nostalgia, from displays of vintage soap packaging to Ringo Starr's first performance with the Beatles in the village in 1962. Through film shows, interactives, models and an array of intriguing artefacts visitors can discover the tale of this inspirational village and explore how it developed over the years, from the working and living conditions to its charming architecture.


There is also opportunity to find out about story of soap at the brand new and interactive feature SoapWorks. For those wanting to explore the village, the museum offers a variety of tour options from a multimedia tour, a guided village tour led by a Port Sunlight guide or a self-guided walking trail taking you on a circular route starting and ending at the museum.


Port Sunlight is one of 21 museums and galleries under The Museums of Cheshire banner which present visitors with the opportunity to explore and experience everything from art and archaeology to chemistry and canals, mills and mansions to schools and salt. Cheshire has a wealth of history and heritage to uncover and boasts so many attractions which help chart that including Tatton Park and the National Waterways Museum at Ellesmere Port, home to the world's largest collection of inland waterways crafts. The area's textile industry can be explored at Macclesfield Silk Museum whilst there is a collection of vintage machinery on show at the Anson Engine Museum.


In keeping with the region's industrial past, a museum attraction equally embedded in its local history is The World of Glass in St Helens, a local museum and visitor centre dedicated to the history of the town and borough primarily through the glass industry and other local industries.


The museum has a great glass collection to explore with items from ancient Egypt right up to contemporary glass. It explores the history of glass with artefacts dating back to 3000 years BC demonstrating how glass has played such an important part in everyday life. Glassblowing demonstrations are also available (check days and times) in the large hot glass studio where you can watch artisans making glass the traditional way.


There is also an insight into what made St. Helens great, from its humble beginnings to the rise as a world leader in glassmaking. The Museum takes visitors back to what life was like in St Helens as thriving coal community by reliving life in a Victorian town in the last century.


Plus, there is chance to explore the Victorian furnace and underground tunnels, one of the world's first continuous regenerative tank glass making furnace. Built in 1887 by William Windle Pilkington, The Grade II listed building is the best surviving example in England according to English Heritage.


Tatton Park

Port Sunlight

The World of Glass

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