A family-friendly exhibition celebrating the 50th anniversary of the moon landings has
launched at the Brampton Museum.
“Out of this World” looks at the production of toys, games, TV programmes and other items from the 1960s and 1970s exploring the fantasies of space travel and living on other planets – influenced by the space race – which particularly rocketed following the landing of the United States’ Apollo 11 spacecraft, the first crewed mission to reach the moon, on 20 July 1969.
The touring exhibition by Emma Warren Exhibitions showcases 30 original childhood favourites including a Thunderbirds toy projector, astronaut playing cards, walkie talkies, moon shoes, Morse code signalling set, flying saucer, space ship and various annuals including Dr Who and Star Trek. Thunderbird figures, still in their original packaging, are being kindly loaned by borough residents Paul Buckley and Darren Wilshaw.
Visitors can go back in time and learn about the intense competition between the USA and the former Soviet Union as they vied to master space, the first moon landing and the story of Dan Dare, a futuristic space pilot originally portrayed in the Eagle comic in the 1950s who became one of the first characters in the space toy boom.
Prints are on display of original advertisements from breakfast cereal manufacturers for
promotional space-themed toys and collectables. Children can read books, play with jigsaw puzzles, board/card games and a space rocket toy or take part in themed craft activities and trails which are available every day.
Home Start, a charitable company working with families, is running free fun sessions every Wednesday, between 2pm and 3pm, involving stories, rhymes and crafts.
Adults and children alike are invited to play the iconic “Space Invaders” video game on an Atari console. Further space-related attractions include an art exhibition by Gill Stokes, featuring abstract paintings with a glass-like surface, and handmade jewellery which is available to buy.
Cllr. Mark Holland, Cabinet member for leisure, culture and heritage, said: “There is always something interesting to see, hear and do at the Brampton Museum and the summer holidays is no exception. This brilliant exhibition focuses on how a preoccupation with space exploration, and the progress made in this area, unleashed a whole new level of freedom and imagination for toy manufacturers and television programme makers. It’s not only educational, but a lot of fun too, and appeals to visitors of all ages. Keeping children entertained and occupied during the school holidays – especially without breaking the bank – can be challenging. Families can enjoy a trip to the museum, and enjoy the beautiful surroundings at the award winning Brampton Park, for next to nothing.”
Brampton Park is home to a sandpit, children’s play area, sensory garden, bird aviary and a miniature railway offering free train rides on certain days. There’s plenty of space to have a picnic. The Brampton Museum is open from Monday to Saturday from 10am to 5.30pm and Sunday, including bank holidays, between 2pm and 5.30pm. Admission is free and free parking is available. There are baby changing and disabled facilities as well as a small shop selling Snugburys ice cream.