Happy April Fool’s Day from Jodrell Bank and the Clangers!

“Our mission is to inspire the scientists of the future”

The University of Manchester’s Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre welcomes over 150,000 visitors each year to the famous Cheshire scientific facility, 21,000 of whom are school pupils on educational visits.

“Our mission is to inspire the scientists of the future”, said Professor Teresa Anderson, Director of the Discovery Centre. “We are delighted to be working with the Clangers. They certainly inspired me as a child to be interested in space. “

Julia Riley, Head of Education at the Discovery Centre, added “I hope that the worksheets we have prepared as part of this project will help younger viewers to learn a little more, and have fun too!”

Jeremy Banks, Chief Executive, Coolabi Group, said: “We are delighted to be working alongside Jodrell Bank to help introduce very young children to the wonders of space.”

Download the worksheets below:

Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre – www.jodrellbank.net – @jodrellbank  / facebook.com/jodrellbankobservatory

The Clangers – www.clangers.com – @helloclangers  / facebook.com/officialclangers


We hope you enjoyed our little April Fool! Here’s the original post that went out, in case you missed it…

A signal has been received by the giant Lovell Telescope at Jodrell Bank Observatory that proves beyond doubt we are not alone in the Universe.

Following its initial detection with the Lovell Telescope, scientists at the observatory used their network of large telescopes across the UK to zoom in and identify the source of the signal as a little blue planet in the constellation of Iocus.

Tim O’Brien, Professor of Astrophysics at Jodrell Bank, explains: “In the last twenty years or so, more than a thousand planets have been found orbiting other stars like the Sun. But this new planet is very strange. It is small compared to most, much smaller than the Earth, and strangely blue.”

When turned into a sound, most signals the radio telescopes receive are just a hiss. But when this observation was processed, it was discovered that hidden within the noise there is a sequence of images and sounds, including a series of clangs and an unusual whistling.

Although the signal is extremely weak and so very fuzzy, the astronomers have been able to enhance it using techniques they normally apply to observations of distant galaxies and produce a video of the planet’s surface.

Astoundingly, the pictures show this little blue planet is inhabited by what appears to be a family of mouse-like creatures.

You can watch the video received from the planet below.

O’Brien is looking forward to more messages from the new planet: “For thousands of years, humans have looked to the skies and wondered whether life might exist on another planet in some far-flung region of the Galaxy. Well, now we know the answer, and it looks like we’ll be friends!”

More information will be released as it becomes available.