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The National Science and Media Museum is now open. Please book free museum admission or cinema tickets online in advance

There’s lots happening at the National Science and Media Museum as part of Bradford Science Festival. Find details of all the events, shows and activities on this page.

Don’t forget you’ll need to book a free admission ticket to visit the museum.

Special events

Visitors watching a family show at the National Science and Media Museum

Kids’ Club: Ice Age (U)

DATE AND TIME: 10.30, 23–24 October

Journey back to the Ice Age and join a group of sub-zero heroes for a thrilling adventure. See it for just £3 per ticket at this Kids’ Club cinema screening.

More information and tickets for Kids’ Club: Ice Age (U)

African Drumming

DATE AND TIME: 10.30, 11.30, 12.30, 13.30, 14.30, 23 and 27 October; 15.00 (27 October only); 15.30 (23 October only)

Come and be uplifted by wonderful drumming and discover traditional Igbo rhythms from local African drummer Moses Ekebuisi. Performances last 15 minutes and are suitable for all ages.

Superscientist Stories

DATE AND TIME: 11.00, 12.00, 13.00, 14.00, 15.00, Saturday 23 October

Learn about the work of an amazing female scientist through puppets, dance and experiments.

More information and tickets for Superscientist Stories

Global Grooves

DATE AND TIME: 15.30, Saturday 23 October and 10.30, 15.00, Saturday 30 October

Get ready to party with giant puppets, dancing robots and fantastic carnival music!

More information for Global Grooves

Science Explorers

DATE AND TIME: 10.15, 11.00, Sunday 24 October

Explore sound through your senses in this workshop designed especially for children with special educational needs and disabilities.

More information and tickets for Science Explorers

Music to Your Ears

DATE AND TIME: 12.30, 14.00, 15.30, Sunday 24 October

Join these live shows and learn all about how we hear sound and how audio players work, with some fun opportunities to make noise and music.

More information and tickets for Music to Your Ears

The XX Factor

DATE AND TIME: 11.00, 12.30, 14.00, Monday 25 October

Take a journey to meet six amazing women in STEM who are mostly unheard of despite their achievements—engineers, inventors, volcanologists and more!

More information and tickets for The XX Factor

The Funky Junk Orchestra

DATE AND TIME: 11.00, 13.00, 14.00, 15.00, Tuesday 26 October

Join the Funky Junk Orchestra to discover how you can make music out of everything from lampshades to bin bags and bottles!

More information and tickets for The Funky Junk Orchestra

Distant Drums

DATE AND TIME: 12.00, 14.30, Tuesday 26 October

Don’t miss this exhilarating, thought-provoking digital art installation and live show telling the story of reggae sound system culture.

More information for Distant Drums

Talking Pictures

DATE AND TIME: 11.00, 12.30, 14.00, 27–30 October

What do objects and places sound like? You get to decide in this hands-on family workshop.

More information and tickets for Talking Pictures

Café Scientifique

DATE AND TIME: 18.30, Thursday 28 October

Join us for an evening discussion event at the museum and online. Everyone’s welcome to help us explore the latest ideas in science and technology.

More information and tickets for Café Scientifique

Kids’ Club: WALL-E (U)

DATE AND TIME: 10.30, 30–31 October

In the distant future, a robot embarks on a journey that will decide the fate of mankind. See the family favourite on the big screen for just £3 per ticket at this Kids’ Club screening.

More information and tickets for Kids’ Club: WALL-E (U)

Pantasy Steel Pan Band

DATE AND TIME: 11.15, 12.15, 13.15, 14.15, Saturday 30 October

Enjoy a mix of traditional Caribbean music and well-known favourites. These fun and upbeat musical performances are sure to get you dancing! Performances last 15 minutes and are suitable for all ages.

Bring the Thunder family show

DATE AND TIME: 11.00, 12.30, 14.00, Sunday 31 October

Discover sound as you’ve never heard it before in an exciting, explosive free live show!

More information and tickets for Bring the Thunder family show

Follow Your Own Path: Careers in STEM

DATE AND TIME: 10.00–17.00, 23–31 October 2021

A display of colourful illustrations capturing inspiring stories of different routes to careers in STEM.

More information for Follow Your Own Path: Careers in STEM


Free drop-in activities

These activities will take place at the National Science and Media Museum between 10.00 and 16.00 on the specified dates. You’re welcome to drop in and get involved!

The Science of Sound

This year, we’re celebrating all things sound. Come along and make noise, hear music and experiment with the science of sound.

  • Creative Junk Sounds Like... (23 October): Join 50 Things to Do Before You’re Five to discover what creative junk sounds like. Quiet or loud, slow or fast, come make a noise with us! Suitable for all ages.
  • Maths in Music (23 October): Find out about the maths in music with Explore Learning. Discover how you can use fractions to understand musical notes, then write your own piece of music. Suitable for ages 5+.
  • Sound and Environment Show and Tell (23 October): Come and speak to Peak Tuition Academy students about their amazing child-led research projects. Learn about Deafness, climate issues and what we can do to help. Suitable for ages 5+.
  • How Big is Sound? (23–24 October): Join researchers from the University of Manchester to discover why size matters for noise reduction and how maths is helping to tackle noise pollution. Suitable for ages 7+.
  • Sound On! (23–26 October): Have a look at a Miniature Acoustic Space Demo Kit with University of Bradford researcher Neha Sharma, and find out about her research into sound and sustainable materials. Suitable for ages 5+.
  • Houdini’s Guide to Acoustics (23–26 October): Explore examples of sound technology including an ultrasound machine, a vibrating aeroplane and an interactive earthquake exhibit. See the magic of acoustics, Houdini style! Suitable for ages 7+.
  • DJ Sounds of Science (25–26 October): A chance to learn the basics of DJing, try your hand at music production, and jam along with friends and family! More about DJ Sounds of Science
  • Shapes with Sound: From the Animal Kingdom to Medicine (27 October): Join the ultrasound team from the Leeds Biomedical Research Centre to learn about how animals use echolocation—and how this links to human medicine. Suitable for ages 5+.
  • What Noise Do Ghosts Make? (27 October): Do ghosts actually make a noise? Try some inventions people have created to try and ‘hear’ them, and have a go at being ghosts and ghostbusters! (Please note: no actual spirits will be used!) Suitable for ages 7+.
  • Patterns in Sound (27–30 October): What patterns can sound make? Join this activity and see for yourself as soundwaves create beautiful shapes. More about Patterns in Sound
  • Seeing With Sound (27–30 October): Discover how scientists are using sound to detect microplastics in water. Suitable for ages 7+.
  • Thunder Station (27–30 October): Experience the power of thunder! Explore sound vibrations and have a go at creating an indoor thunderstorm. More about Thunder Station
  • Fun With Electronic Music (29 October): Have fun trying out electronic music equipment using Ableton Live, Push and Push 2 software and hardware. Record sounds, loop voices and create rhythms. Suitable for ages 7+.
  • Musical Physics (30–31 October): Join the Institute of Physics for musical physics fun, from making a bowl of water sing and dance to creating instruments from lollipop sticks! Suitable for ages 5+.

Science Saving the World

Find out more about the world around you and explore how science can help with the climate emergency.

  • Smart, Clean and Green (23 October): Making cement, ceramics, chemicals, glass, metals and paper creates a huge amount of CO₂ gas, but these industries support how we live. Find out how we can build a greener future. Suitable for ages 7+.
  • Museum of Plastics: Special Preview (23–24 October): A chance to view the new digital Museum of Plastics ahead of its world premiere at COP26 in Glasgow the following week. Suitable for ages 7+.
  • ReThink Food Futures (23–31 October): How can you grow food without soil? See the future of growing food and learn about how it will help tackle global food shortages. Suitable for ages 5+.
  • Planting for Healthy Lives (27 October): Lots of local organistaions help build communities, plant trees and promote healthy lifestyles. Find out about the science behind their work and how you can get involved. Suitable for ages 5+.
  • Make a Move for Change! (27–28 October): In Impact Gamers’ climate-themed game, you need to get moving to complete the puzzles. Get involved—you can even have a go at building your own level! More about Make a Move for Change!

Brad Lab

Find out about some of the amazing science happening locally and how scientists are working to make Bradford a more sustainable city.

  • Sound and Environment Show and Tell (23 October): Come and speak to Peak Tuition Academy students about their amazing child-led research projects. Learn about Deafness, climate issues and what we can do to help. Suitable for ages 5+.
  • Sound On! (23–26 October): Have a look at a Miniature Acoustic Space Demo Kit with University of Bradford researcher Neha Sharma, and find out about her research into sound and sustainable materials. Suitable for ages 5+.
  • Pumpkin Trail (28–31 October): Pick up a trail sheet from the museum and then head into town—can you find all the pumpkins hidden in the city centre? More about Pumpkin Trail

STEM City

People work in science, technology, engineering and maths doing many different things. Find out about some of the exciting jobs that are available and how to get into them.

  • The Future of Vision and Short-Sightedness (23–24, 28 and 30–31 October): Take part in a quiz to find out how vision works, why people become short-sighted, why it’s important and what we can do about it. Suitable for ages 7+.
  • Everyday Engineers (23–24 and 30–31 October): Join the West Yorkshire STEM Ambassador Hub to find out more about careers in science, technology, maths and engineering in the region. Suitable for ages 7+.
  • Let’s Move It! (23–31 October): Is it possible to move a full-size truck using LEGO® Technic™? Join us to find out! More about Let’s Move It!

Part of the Science Museum Group