Monday, 5 January 2009

full steam ahead

Full steam ahead for the Museum Of Scottish Industrial Life. Summerlee, now open to groups following a two year refurbishment.
After two years and an investment of £10 million, Summerlee - the Museum of Scottish Industrial Life - in Coatbridge, North Lanarkshire, reopened its gates to the public this autumn. Tour groups can once again experience life as it was during Scotland’s industrial revolution and into the early part of the 20th Century, especially as admission remains free.
Summerlee’s old favourites, such as the tram rides (small fee charged), trips down the mine, the miners’ cottages and the playpark have been improved and upgraded. However, it is the main exhibition hall that the main changes have taken place, with a whole new experience being created within.
On entering the hall the first thing visitors will see is the sheer scale of the new displays. Working machinery have always been an attraction at Summerlee – nicknamed ‘Scotland’s noisiest museum’. Now there is an enlarged display including the huge winding wheel from the former Cardowan Colliery at Stepps, one of the last railway engines to made in Airdrie and and even a ‘vitual reality’ blast furnace.
Summerlee has a large coach park just adjacent to the main entrance, plus all the facilities associated with a VisitScotland four-star graded attraction. These include a brand new café and shop. The size of Summerlee means tour groups can be accommodated without difficulty, but if planning a visit on local holiday Mondays, it is advisable to advise the office in advance on:
(01236) 638460 or e-mail

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