Heritage

Jodrell Bank’s bold and pioneering story is widely regarded to be of national and international significance.

For over 70 years, Jodrell Bank Observatory has been a world-leading science research institute, continuously pushing back the boundaries of our knowledge and understanding of the universe, while the scientists at Jodrell Bank continue to work at the cutting edge of modern astrophysics, there is a new awareness of the importance of those early developments that took place here.

On 7th July 2019, in recognition of its internationally significant heritage, science and cultural impact, Jodrell Bank Observatory was awarded UNESCO World Heritage Site status and will now be inscribed on to the World Heritage List.

Jodrell Bank now joins a prestigious group of sites across the globe recognised by UNESCO’s international community as sites of Outstanding Universal Value. The World Heritage Site inscription acknowledges Jodrell Bank’s tremendous scientific endeavours and its role in achieving a transformational understanding of the Universe. To tell this story, our National Lottery Heritage Fund-supported project First Light at Jodrell Bank, will transform visitor facilities at the Discovery Centre to create a spectacular new gallery space and public engagement programme. The project will allow us to make archive materials and historic artefacts available for public view, to open up previously inaccessible parts of the site, and to celebrate Jodrell Bank as an important piece of our national heritage and a significant chapter in our shared history.

This increased interest in Jodrell Bank’s pioneering history, coupled with both a new approach to the custody of scientific heritage and the celebration of its significance, is having a revolutionary impact on the way we engage and inspire the visitors and communities of Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre.

I am delighted that Jodrell Bank has become the UK’s 32nd UNESCO World Heritage Site. The research completed here has transformed our understanding of the Universe and it is right that this is recognised.

Today’s announcement will make sure that this remarkable site will continues to inspire young scientists and astronomers all over the world.”
Rebecca Pow MP, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Arts, Tourism and Heritage

Image: The Mark II and Lovell Telescopes at Jodrell Bank. The University of Manchester