Jodrell Bank is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and home to the world-famous grade 1 listed Lovell Radio Telescope.
In 1945 Bernard Lovell was a physicist at the University of Manchester and he was looking for cosmic ray showers – high-energy particles entering the earth’s atmosphere. Whilst developing wartime radar systems Lovell had speculated about this new technology; if radar could be used to detect aircraft at night, could it be used to detect other invisible things, like the cosmic rays he had been studying before the war?
When the war ended Lovell acquired some surplus equipment from the army and drove it out to the University of Manchester’s experimental botany grounds at Jodrell Bank in Cheshire. It was isolated with no electricity, but this was perfect for his purposes. No electricity meant no interference to confuse his readings.
And so began Jodrell Banks’ life as a world-renowned scientific establishment that has played it’s part in tracking Sputnik, the Apollo moon landings and vitally important research into the universe and the ‘Big Bang’.
There is so much to see and do at Jodrell Bank. With an arboretum, fascinating educational space exhibitions, multiple telescopes and children’s play areas there really is something for everyone in the family. Check the website for details of the latest developments.