THE opening date for a multi-million-pound science attraction on Wirral has been confirmed.
The eagerly awaited Eureka! Science + Discovery Centre in Seacombe will open its doors to the public from Friday November 11.
Featuring a range of “exciting and interactive exhibits” including a 12-foot-tall cat complete with swishing tail and a giant climbing tree, the attraction will include hands on learning experiences linked to key themes that run through our daily lives.
Co-created with more than 200 local children and young people from Wirral and the wider Liverpool City Region, regional industry experts and the team from Eureka!, the Science + Discovery centre will help kids up to the age of 14 to explore STEAM (Science, Technology, Education, Arts and Mathematics) subjects and uncover new and exciting career aspirations.
Located next to the world-famous Mersey Ferries’ Seacombe ferry terminal, Eureka! Science + Discovery is the first expansion of the brand anywhere else in the UK and has been earmarked as an important element of the Liverpool City Region’s inclusive growth and education ambitions.
Leigh-Anne Stradeski, who has been chief executive of Eureka! since 2000, said: “Eureka! has long held an ambition to open a second attraction to engage with a wider audience in the north west, and the opportunity in Wirral presented the perfect combination of a supportive regional combined authority and local council, a brilliant local community and a ready made iconic setting”
The new £11.4m visitor attraction has received funding from both public and private sector donations, including £6.4m from Mayor Steve Rotheram and the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority’s Strategic Investment Fund, and a £3m investment from the Wellcome Trust/UKRIs ‘Inspiring Science Fund’, and plays an important role in supporting the Liverpool City Region achieve its inclusive growth and education ambitions by engaging young people in STEAM subjects in new, more accessible ways.
“Establishing a high-calibre visitor attraction in Seacombe will not only positively impact the local economy but also help expand and influence the aspirations of the local children and young people, which is what Eureka! is all about”, continued Leigh-Anne.
The attraction is set to welcome more than 187,000 visitors, create approximately 160 full and part time roles and deliver a projected £12m to the local economy by 2032.
Wirral Council Leader, councillor Janette Williamson, said: “We couldn’t be more excited to have a world class attraction like Eureka opening in Wirral.
“Not only is it a big boost for our local economy and will create many jobs but it’s such an exciting, immersive way for children to learn.”
Mayor of Liverpool City Region, Steve Rotheram said: “Our area has established itself as an international tourist destination for a reason: because we offer our visitors an experience unlike anywhere else in the country. Eureka!’s arrival will bring another fascinating new addition to our offer.
“What was a tired and underused space will be replaced by a fresh, interesting, and interactive new attraction for all the family, thanks in part to £6.4m of funding from the Combined Authority.
“It is just a part of our wider plans to revitalise Birkenhead and the Left Bank area.
“As someone who is passionate about skills and technical subjects, I’m delighted to see that Eureka! Science + Discovery will be putting a special emphasis on STEAM subjects, introducing our region’s young people to topics like life sciences, digital innovation and green technology in a fun and refreshing way.
“We want to inspire our youngsters, especially young women, to explore the opportunities out there for them and help to address some of the gender imbalances that exist in these sectors, and I can think of no place better for them to start that journey than here in the Liverpool City Region.
“With some of the world’s leading clusters of innovation in science, technology and AI right on our doorstep, our area is a natural fit. Who knows how many engineers and scientists of the future might be inspired by their visits?”
Eureka! Science + Discovery features zones exploring the wonderful uniqueness of our Bodies, all the things that are part of the fabric and spaces of our Homes, and Nature where questions ranging from the smallest critters to the big questions around climate action are explored.
There is also Make Create, a space where imagination and innovation come together to allow visitors to tinker and create. A phase two opening of the Discovery Café and a dedicated exhibition area for the younger visitors, The Burrow will be launched after Christmas.
For more about Eureka! Science + Discovery visit https://www.eurekadiscovery.org.uk/